Kuala Rompin, Pahang – 4 OCT 2016
First of all, apologize to all our readers because we hadn’t been updating new outing report over the past 2 months!! Hands tied up as our tours demand had increased exponentially. We have more exciting post about to be shared across several weeks from now and hopefully we can satisfy your craving for more of our Fishyology adventure.
India has always been one of the world’s key fishing countries and industry. We are honored to host a group of fishing enthusiast from India who will be fishing for the Pacific Sailfish over Kuala Rompin, Malaysia. Mr Nelson and I have been emailing back and forth since Apr 2016 to set up a 3 day outing in Kuala Rompin. Preparation to set the whole expedition takes a longer time than the actual fishing itself. After getting all the visa and travel arrangement sorted out, finally D-Day has arrived. This time, Fooz will be helping me out on deck for the next three days of our Sailfish Adventure.
The usual pickup routine, they all landed in KLIA and apparently only 4 made it and the the other guy Eddie missed his flight… Nelson, Hermanth, Prakash and Deepak Asrani have reached safely and we head straight to Rompin after our dinner. We reach Rompin about 2am and we all went straight to bed as we need to start early the next day. Some stayed out for a drink or two haha but tomorrow will be big day for us.
Day 1, A Slow Start
Travelling over a long flight and drive can be tiring at times. We detour for a quick visit to the city center for breakfast. They all manage to savor some of the local delicacy, Nasi Lemak, Nasi Dagang and Roti Canai… Since Malaysia is truly Asia, some of the local food are actually influenced by Indian culture, especially Roti Canai. Which was believed to have been originated for Chennai, India. Chennai-Canai.. Get it? We finally reach the jetty by 9.30 am and quickly sets off for our Sailfish expedition. Fishing are expected to be good in Berhala and Karang Luas, We should be able to get a decent tally over the next 3 days.
We made our first stop for bait fish and it seems we couldn’t get our hands on good quality bait. They always love Kembung or Mackerel and I think we only have one at the moment. The guys were very good in putting effort to experience the overall process of catching live bait and start the Sailfish fishing. We are more than happy to assist them to get involved with the experience, instead of laying back and drinking all day. It is far more fun when we have a solid team work. Fooz also manage to hookup some squids for dinner and sure it is something to look forward to tonight 🙂
Instead of heading to Karang Luas, we moved on to Berhala Island to do our Sailfish fishing in the area. A yellow scad will be use as bait this time, because of its resistance to injury and fast swimming action. A perfect bait to attract predator in the area. I had the first take, seconds when the bait were released into the water. The line striped from my hand at a blistering speed, and all the sudden 30-40m behind the line a solid silvery body jumps out of the water. It was out of the water for at least 2 seconds and my line stopped spilling like crazy. It was a healthy Black Marlin, as I reel in, the bait has the distinctive bill bite marked on its body….. DANG!
Kembung or Spotted Mackerel is definitely one of the best bait for the Pacific Sailfish. It doesn’t take long when finally we got a solid hookup and Nelson got the first chance. When battling Sailfish, The initial part were probably the toughest round. The fish is still strong, swims fast and easily striped line from a fishing reel with a drag rating of 10kg. It tend to jump out of the water, shaking its head, hoping to get the hook off from its mouth. Anglers can really feel the weight of its force on your arms that are clinging dearly to the rod. 10 mintues-20 mintues, those are the average figure when you want to pull it into the boat from start to finish. Even with a fighting belt, over time, the pain from straining muscle will start to kick in, boy.. it can be painful at times. Nelson did just fine, I believe he is a seasoned angler and he bring the first fish home.
After spending the whole day at sea, it time for us to head back. Usually cut off time is 4.30pm and we should reach the jetty by 5.30pm. Due to safety reason, the boat must reach the jetty before lights goes down as this will help our captain to maneuver along the shallow Rompin River and store the boat properly. It was a tiring first day. Fooz brought his Squid catch for dinner at James Restaurant.
We head back, quick shower and head back to Rompin River Restaurant for our Dinner. We had deep fried squid, Squid Sambal, Black Pepper Venison and some other delicious food for our guest. On other development, Eddie who misses his flight yesterday finally made it to Kuala Rompin! He had to travel to Thailand and back to KL before taking a cab to Rompin. It is just amazing, how wacky can your travel be at times lol.
Day 2 – Karang Luas
We manage to leave the house early and we were an hour quicker than last night. Karang Luas is our next battle field and that is where all the boats were going. We can see massive group of birds flocking the area, scouring for bait fish from above while Sailfish would encircle it below. One basic rule for sailfish fishing is that we can actually target the Sailfish easily when there is birds around. Birds would take advantage of the cornered bait fish, thanks to their underwater counterpart. Hermanth and Parakash got their chance to start our day 2 expedition.
Both of them did well, without actually turning berserk forcing the reel to reel back the fish too quickly. Both of them take their time and add more Sailfish to our total tally. It was a perfect hot day, had several opportunity but failed half way. One thing for sure is that the Sailfish finally moved on to a different location. Other boatman were telling that the numbers of sails a day earlier were in the hundreds, but today the numbers shrinks and fishing died off before we finish our day.
It was a productive day. The journey back to the jetty was straight forward with no bad weather or rough sea along the way. Hermanth, Deepak and Parakash decided to head back to KL after the fishing trip as they wanted to spend some time in KL for sight seeing. Being a photographer, he really look forward to take some good photos of Kuala Lumpur. I head back with them and Fooz stayed on for another day with Nelson and Eddie.
It was a great outing with all of them. Hopefully we have shared all the knowledge and experience, to prepare yourself for next year Royal Pahang Billfish International Challenge 2017. Fishing for Sailfish can be very exciting, very challenging but to us, meeting new people and get them to relive our journey was far sweeter. Thank you Nelson, Deepak, Hermanth and Parakash. I have developed great memories with you guys and hopefully we will see you guys soon.