You can read part 1 of this series here
It may seem strange that you’d even consider the type of personal gear that you’d take to PNG to chase Black Bass but on arrival to Sydney International Airport, when checking in, we were at risk of a hefty “overweight” charge ($22/kg) on our luggage. Loaded up with our rods, reels, lures, hooks and camera gear, we were pushing the upper limits of the weight limit and the patience of the check in staff.
The amount of mosquitoes buzzing around the mangroves could potentially end in a very uncomfortable trip. Loaded up with a couple of tubes of 80% DEET Bushman insect repellent meant that we were able to fish in relative comfort. Don’t forget a can of spray repellent too, this can be used to spray on your clothes as the mozzies WILL bite through around your knees and shoulders of your pants and shirt, especially the shoulder on the side that holds your rod.
Take a couple of Buffs, these proved invaluable as protection against the sun, improving visibility (less light entering behind our sunnies) and helping with the mozzies. More than one buff means that rotating between days results in a less smelly experience.
Long pants/shirts are a must for sun protection and again help with the mozzies. Take light fishing jerseys like the Daiwa, Hobie and Lureandfly.com versions that we use, they are great in the heat and humidity of PNG.
Don’t take too many clothes, Kori from Sport fishing PNG will organise for any clothes to be washed as part of the service. Take a couple of travel laundry bags to put your washing in and take less clothes and more fishing gear!
You’ll generally fish around locals, who are the traditional owners of the river systems. Take some shirts, hats, stickers, lollies or something similar that you can give away, as they’ll really appreciate your deeds and will sometimes source live bait (if you would rather live bait, than cast or troll), coconuts, prawns, crabs or other seafood in return. Giving to the locals was definitely a highlight of my trip as they are very friendly people and are more than accommodating and grateful for any gifts.
You’ll be fishing long days, getting up at 5am and getting back to the lodge around 6 of an evening, you won’t need much entertainment as you’ll be begging for more fishing time or more sleep.