Pekan, Pahang, 10 SEP 2016
James and Andrew first visit over Pahang region was back in August 2016. The fishing hasn’t been that great but it does stir them up to give it atleast another go. Sailfish will still be the main target and we have been discussing to select either Rompin or Pekan as their main location. Since they have tried Rompin earlier, this time we will start in Pekan, Pahang.
Pekan has been one of the best location to land trophy size Diamond Trevally aka Ebek and Golden Trevally as well as Long Fin Trevally. The kickoff season however is very short from the month of March up until May. Most of the fishing had slowed down after June but we suggest that Anglers could give a go to try out Sailfish fishing over this region.
Basically we have 2 days to do our best and this time James and Andrew brought their respective brothers to join in the fun. Expectation is high and to skunked again is not on our option. We started our morning early and head off 1 hour from the Pekan Fishing jetty. It was an easy ride from start to finish, with the wave has been kind to us and the wind condition was ok. To start the day, we begin our live bait fishing. Collecting Tamban, Selar, Lolong and Kembung as many as we can. We need enough bait for the day plus we will be drifting 4 bait at one time. 5 cycle alone, at-least 20 live bait is in use.
After we have enough live bait, we head out to start our Sailfish Fishing. It is unexpectedly quite close to the shore, and as we were about to begin our fishing. A 1m plus Sailfish jumps out of the water 4-5 times, greeting us or even taunting us with the acrobatic show. Its good to know sailfish is definitely around and its time to get the ball rolling. The first thing to do is to get all the 5/0 circle hook tied properly and only on a Rapala Knot. It gives the hook free space to avoid any lose hookup thanks to the Sailfish acrobatic maneuver to free itself from the hook. After a quick demo, its time to hook the bait and drift the bait. We will form a 2-3 layer of strike zone ranging from 40-60m range from the boat.
The first Sailfish was a tough fighter, 3 times it encircle the boat. We need to get the rod circling around and we passed on the rod to all anglers to pull this one mighty fish. 30 minutes later finally we had it close to the boat and I manage to grab the leader. It was still trying to make another run but it run out of energy. I knew it from the dramatic changes to its color, from silver to blackish copper. A sign that this fish fought very hard, I literally had to talk him out to surrender itself. If it continues to fight, it might not survive after we release it. I think to them its pretty strange to see me talking to the fish haha, and finally I had the bill in my hand and lift this incredible fish for the anglers to see. What a great team effort, a quick photo with it and soon we release it back to the sea after the fish shows good sign of recovery.
We continue on to drift out livebait. After the first fish, we are all very focused but the fish weren’t baiting any more. I look at the well, the baitfish were running low. Plus its mid day, there is no way the fish will be baiting. Thus we decided to head back to look for more bait or even do other type of fishing. As we reach our first Unjam, we started to look for more baitfish, but Aloy already gear up to catch some squid. Just after one dropped he was on to it already.
After stock up some baitfish, I to switch to the Squid Jig and starting to catch some. We get some live bait drifting at the back and we take turn squid jigging at the front of the boat. It was funny to be honest lol. The idea is to quickly lift the squid from the sea and hold it without pointing the head of the squid towards the boat and friends. Even we have a chance to lift it up, the squid will squirt ink and trust me you do not want to get your self on their squid ink crosshair. The ink shot goes more than 1m from their head and if it gets to your clothes, it will never come out. Haha. James has moment that will be remembered forever with Squid Ink Squirt right to his face and hair hahaha. It was a moment of fun actually 🙂
I head back to the cabin, giving way for the guys to catch more squid. All the sudden,BOOM!! One of the reel sets off, and from the degree of the fish smashed the bait, it could be a Tenggiri or Narrow Barred Mackerel. Mr Lim, I find him a steady guy, reel the line and landed a massive Tenggiri. There are moments that he would just stopped because he thought the fish free itself from the hook. Kept on telling him to reel the line as quick as possible because the Mackerel would swims back towards the boat in order to cut the line. He was on a sail setup and luckily the circle hook were properly caught the corner of the mouth. Hoorah! One more fish landed!
After the squid no longer bites the lure, we switched to a different spot, hoping to catch one more sail. The new place somehow runs out of squid and the boys kept on fishing with fresh squid and live bait. Another grouper just cant resist the freshness and tasty looking squid tentacle. This time a bigger table size grouper that will fit nicely for our dinner.
It doesn’t took long before one of the clicker sets off! James was up next as his bait were taken by another Sailfish. It was very strong, and has taken a lot of line, probably close to 150m. The game is on yet again. Like the one last time, It is hard to get them to surrender and they switch anglers to make sure they win this battle. This one came in a bit easy, but still peels more line when it get closer to the boat. I grab the bill, release the hook and pull it up the boat! It was a good day indeed.
Day 2 were a bit choppy and the wind wasn’t been kind to us. It took a lot of time just to reach the first spot. The sea was just so rough, the boat was swaying left and right, up and down. Its not looking to good at the moment. We started off with live bait fishing and even some squid fishing before we head down to the sailfish spot. After we fill in the live bait tank, we travel down to the Sailfish spot. The birds were every where and we know the Sailfish is definitely around.
Andrew were the first man to get his bait on the water. As drifted more than 20m from the boat, A massive Mackerel jumps out of the water, quite close to his balloon. It will definitely turned back and hammered the live bait. It did happened and the 70lb Fluorocarbon leader did not stand a chance.
3-4 times the Narrow Barred Mackerel were on the rampage, hitting our bait and cutting our lines. From the total 5 strikes, at-least 1 of it is a sailfish, Andrew who has been getting bite from a Mackerel hooked it too early without giving the Sailfish chance to really take the bait. While most of the action happens at the back of the boat. I was in front have fun with a school of Bonito. They are fun to catch, when I wanted to pass over the fun, the school of Bonito swims away. Aloy pointed out on the sea surface, a huge shark fin sticks out of the water and swims pass through the Bonito School. I caught my attention for a while but that was just awesome!
The fish were definitly around but still there were finicky when they take the bait. We waited a long 2 hours without any bait, and the sea still weren’t cooling down. We decided to head back to the Unjam and try our luck in Squid Jigging plus we can drift live bait for more Tenggiri or even Sailfish. We did manage to get a full bucket of squid and it was light tackle fun. James aka King of Squid finally manage to land one haha.
We also came across a school of baby Barracuda and it was light tackle fun too. We caught a bunch of those but still no sign of Sailfish or even Tenggiri. Over the horizon, we can see dark clouds forming at the shores. Storm is coming and we need to get back to the shores as soon as possible. Our work were cut short and we leave the spot around 3.00pm. Luckily it was raining all the way without any serious strong wind and high waves. we reach the jetty around 4.30pm and grateful to be back alive haha!
Overall is was a fun outing. James and his buddies were awesome, and they kept on trying to maximize their two days fishing. Back at the jetty, we get all the fish sorted out. Cleaned and portioned the fish. Pack them in Ice packs hoping that it will last for their long way back to Singapore. It was great fun, and hopefully more adventures awaits us next time in the future. Thank You!!