Thursday, January 31, 2008

Pulau Jarak 26 Jan 08 - 28 Jan 08 : Catch Report

Pulau Jarak, which is situated in the Straits of Melaka is a popular fishing destination in Malaysia. The fishing method usually done in Pulau Jarak are jigging, popping and bottom bashing. This trip to Pulau Jarak was organized by Damien. Initially, the number of participants for this trip was 9, but due to some last minute cancellation, only 6 people were on board the boat at departure time. The participants for this trip are Damien, Tang, Jimmy, Wan Izhan, Mahadzhir and myself. All of us, except for Wan left on Friday night and put up the night in Teluk Intan.
The next day, we met up with Wan at the jetty in Bagan Dato. This would be our departure point to Pulau Jarak. After introducing ourselves, we then proceeded to load our stuff on the boat. Below are some pictures of the boat and the facilities on the boat.

:::... The Kitchen ...:::

:::... Spacious sidewalk with railing to hold on while walking ...:::

:::... Live bait well ...:::

:::... Our friendly deck hand. Excellent food prepared by him ....:::

:::... Ah Ho, the famous skipper of GT Chaser ...:::

:::... Toilet cum bathroom on the boat ...:::

:::... Rod holder at the back of the boat ...:::

:::... Rod holder on the sides of the boat ...:::

:::... Spacious cabin ...:::

:::... Very spacious cabin ...:::

:::.. Spacious sidewalk ...:::

:::... More rod holders ...:::

Our first spot would be at Hutan Melintang sea mount. The journey to our first spot would take us about 3 hour from Bagan Dato jetty. We took this opportunity to prepare our tackle for the battle ahead.

:::... Damien and Wan checking out their Sevenseas Jig..:::

:::... Jimmy in front of the boat ...:::

:::... Sharma and Damien in the cabin preparing their tackle ...:::

:::... Tang busy with his Ang Cho killer setup ...:::

:::... Damien the Organizer ...:::

:::... Mahadzhir preparing his tackle ...:::

:::... Commercial Fisherman Trawler Boat ...:::

:::... Ready for battle ...:::

:::... Ready for battle ...:::

:::... Pulau Sembilan from the distance ...:::

:::... Mantin Prawn as live bait for golden snapper (ang cho) ...:::

Upon reaching our first stop which was Hutan Melintang, we wasted no time an proceeded to drop our jig into the water. Wan and Mahadzhir were the first to be rewarded with a strike. They had a double hookup and after a brief fight, they both landed Giant Trevally (GT) weighing about 5kg each. Mahadzhir then got another hookup after that. It was a shark but unfortunately, he lost the fish at boat side. He did manage to get grouper after that as a consolation.

:::... Moments before landing the fish ...:::

:::... Double hookup by Wan and Mahadzhir...:::

:::... Mahadzhir fishing with a shark. Unfortunately it was lost at boat side...:::

:::... Mahadzhir with a grouper ...:::

Tang would then proceed to show all of us on board why he is called the Ang Cho King for the trip. We we all jigging at that time and Tang had said before that that he was going to hook up an ang cho and true to his word, he was rewarded with an ang cho (golden snapper).

:::... Tang fighting with his ang cho...:::

:::.. A lovely 2kg plus ang cho ...:::

The action had died down and less hits were registered after that. It was during this time that I had a solid hook up on my rod. Prior to this, I had 3 strikes but all of them didn't register any solid hook up. This time, I had a solid hookup. My tackle setup was an Abu Garcia Conolon PE 3-5 jigging rod, Daiwa Freams 4500 J with a 150g Ofmer jig. The fight laster about 10 minutes. It was a see saw battle. I would gain some line and then proceed to lose more line as the fish makes its run. At one stage I almost gave up the fight. The fight gave my back a massive strain. Sweat was pouring from my forehead and my right arm was aching. In the end, after what felt like a lifetime for me, the fish was successfully landed and Captain Ah Ho confirmed that the GT weighted approximately 10kg. I had a the Rapala Scale with me, and when I tried to weigh the fish, the scale reached its limit. My scale was a 9kg scale and the fish weight more than what the scale was intended to take.

:::.. 10kg GT from Pulau Jarak ...:::

:::... Caught with Abu Conolon PE 3-5 Rod, Daiwa Freams 4500J Reel and 150g Ofmer jig ...:::

After that, the action didn't die down. Jimmy and Wan got another double hook up. Looks like the both of them would be the star for this trip. Tnag also managed to get a hit during this time. He was rewarded with a GT for his effort.

:::... Jimmy fighting with his fish ...:::

:::... Handsome looking GT ...:::

:::... Wan fighting his fish ...:::

:::... Handsome guy with him handsome fish ...:::

:::... Ang cho king with his GT ...:::

We moved spots a few times and the biggest fish for this trip was caught during that time. It was around 5.30 when Jimmy got a hit on his jig. It was a massive hit. Jimmy was at the front of the boat at that time. As he was fighting the fish, we all made way for him. All of us were more focused on his catch. From the looks of it, the fish that was on the other end of his line was a biggie. The fight lasted for more that 15 minutes. We were all making fun of him and at the same time we were shouting encouragement at him. At the end of the day, a massive 12 kg GT was subdued and landed.

:::... Initial hookup of the GT by Jimmy ...:::

:::... Smiling Jimmy ...:::

Moments before landing the fish ...:::

:::... 12 kg GT by Jimmy ...:::

:::... Reviving the fish before release ...:::

That night, the Ah Ho parked the boat near Pulau Jarak and Wan, Tang and Jimmy took this opportunity to do some bottom fishing. Damien, Mahadzhir and myself did some popping for Big Eye Trevally. Mahadzhir and Damien managed to land one Big Eye Trevally each. There was not much action from the bottom bashing guys.

:::... Damien with his Big Eye Trevally ...:::

:::... Mahadzhir with his Big Eye Trevally ...:::

The next day, the day started quite gloomy. The day began with some popping activity by Damien, Wan and Mahadzhir. However there was no takers . We then decided to move away from Pulau Jarak to do some jigging. The action that day was quite slow. Maybe is was due to the overcast sky and gloomy weather. In spite all this, Damien did manage to get a strike on his Poseidon Spin Jerker rod paired with a Shimano Stella 5000. He had been jigging from the back of the boat when he got the strike.

:::... Pulau Jarak ...:::

:::... Damien in action ...:::

:::... Poseidon Spin Jerker ...:::

:::... Shimano Stella 5000 ...:::

:::... Proud angler with his catch ...:::

Soon after that, we were hit by rain. We had no choice but to take refuge at Pulau Jarak until the rain cleared.

:::... Rain ...:::

Once the rain had stopped, we proceeded to continue jigging at another spot. Here the bites were much better than the morning session. I had 2 strong take but both were lost during the fight. I had one uncontrollable fish. It just took the jig and dived down. In the end, I broke my mainline when it was cut off by the corals. Such a was. The others did quite good. Jimmy had 2 solid hookups and Wan had one GT landed. Ang Cho King Tang proved without a shadow of a doubt why he was give the name. He had managed to land another golden snapper (ang cho) while jigging.

:::... Jimmy with his first GT during the afternoon session ...:::

:::... Wan with his GT ...:::

:::... Jimmy again with his second catch ...:::

:::... Ang Cho King with his fish ...:::

:::... Samy Veloo on Ima jig by Damien ...:::

That night, we went to a ship wreck to fish for golden snapper. Tang, Jimmy, Wan and myself had our bottom rods out and ready for some action. However, only 2 strikes were registered and successfully landed.

:::... Jimmy with his golden snapper ...:::

:::... Ang Cho King again with his Golden Snapper ...:::

:::... Me waiting for a strike ...:::

We didn't fish for long that night as we were hit by a thunderstorm. The captain decided to take refuge at Pulau Sembilan.

The next morning, we all tried to fish around the waters of Pulau Sembilan but we didn't register any catch. Soon it was time to leave and head back to the Bagan Dato Jetty. We arrived at the jetty at approximately 12 noon.

As a whole, I would think that this trip was a good trip. I would like to personally thank Damien for taking the effort and time to organize this trip. Although I only manage to land one fish (GT 10 kg), I am satisfied as I had the pleasure to fish with a great bunch of guys.

Before I end this report, I would like to apologize if I may have knowingly or unknowing uttered words that may have offended some of you on board. It was great fishing with you guys and hope to see you all again in Pekan...........