Wednesday, December 29, 2010

25 - 27 December Sibu Kelong: Monsoon? What Monsoon?!

Another trip to the Sibu Kelongs was on the cards. We were planning to catch the long Christmas weekend. 6 of us were joining Cheong’s kakis which numbered some 50 pax. Some arrangements were made and some old friends were reunited.

I made some last minute designs on a sinker with a rubber squid. These will be used as sinkers on my Sabiki rig. I saw Roger got a Chermin on his last trip to Sibu with rubber worms so I thought why not? Since I have some time, I tied a few pcs that might hopefully get me some trevally species. I prepared the usual Yamashita Squid Jigs too.

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6 of us had ample space on a mini van meant for 10. There was no squeezing and bustling. We left early and hit the causeway at 6am!

Everything went smoothly this time. No engine oil breakdown and no lost drivers. We even had time to eat at the famous Kiang Kee bakuteh stall! We spent easily close to 1 hour there having a good time talking about our past catches and how everyone has been this few months. It’s always great to meet up with old friends. The Bakuteh(pork tea) was delicious and was very herbal. It’s definitely better than what you have in beach road.

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When we reached the jetty, we saw it was not that crowded for a long weekend so we were an optimistic bunch. To add to the smooth transition for our journey, the call for Ah Ngan Kelong was on the moment we arrived! We boarded the boat right after we got our tickets. As usual, the boat was packed to the brim but this was standard and we had faith in Jaffar, Ah Ngan’s boat captain. No one was asked to wear the life jackets but hey with such calm seas, no one bothered. The boss of the kelong waved us good bye as we embarked on our quest for the big fishes!

KFC!
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I was rather disappointed with the water clarity. I expected it to be murky but when I reached the kelong, I got a shock. It was like as blue as a non monsoon day!

Monsoon? What monsoon?
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This will mean a poor catch as fishes are more wary in clear water. We went off the jig for the Selar and it was an okay catch for some time. Some big selars were landed on sabiki rigs but the Todaks were crazy. If you didn’t bring them in fast, they will come in and there goes your whole rig. It was a sign that baitfish was scarce! Can you imagine that every baitfish I threw back into the water, a Todak would come in and grab it?

All of us didn’t care for lunch as we had too much bakuteh so we carried on fishing. Towards the mid day, I was having some luck with squids. As usual, people gathered around me and tried to get the squids too.

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Tian got a big bite and we were quite excited as line was going out fast… A false Cobia turned up! I had one on my noodle rod which almost burst me off belong the kelong stilts. Only after evenings was productive for squid. I slept most of the nights away. It was swa chiam(whiting) frenzy all day for the 2 days. Everyone got some… I think the whole kelong easily upped at least a 100 swa chiam.

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On Sunday afternoon, we heard from some locals that a boat carrying some Singaporeans from ah yew Kelong had capsized and there were 3 dead, 2 missing. We were a little worried here but we carried on fishing. However, we were told to leave the kelong the next morning at 10am as all kelongs will be closed for investingation.

Food was delicious
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Hard work was not my friend during this trip! I got up early for the last morning at around 6am and worked some jigs though. I was well rewarded and AG came to join me. She did well too! She broke her record for this trip!

Well, here’s the total catch. 42 Squids of which 9 came from AG and the rest from me. I had some fun with big eye and selar on Sim’s pole rod on the last night. I’m going to get a pole rod too!

Btw i dropped a huge baktao estimated around 2kg at a very snaggy spot. Just when i was about to shout to AG to get the squid gaff, the fella got off the hooks! I spent the next 30 mins at the same spot trying and lost 3 yamashitas there in the process! This only shows baktaos love snaggy areas

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The ferry journey back was made extra safe with 12 passengers and life jackets issued. We reached the jetty and they were still trying to find missing people. A heart wrenching sight was upon was. 2 crying woman with a little kid was looking out onto the waters. Their family member was still missing. We left the jetty with a heavy heart and were fortunate we were not the ones that capsized.

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Scene at jetty
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Sibu Kelongs will be closed for the time being pending some safety tweaks and investigation. Until further updates!

We had ample time so we went for some R n R.

3 comments:

Paddy Pike said...

Well done Nigel and friends, I am liking the pictures of the warm places as its still below freezing in most parts of the UK, The jigs are good for the squid, Look very good,
All the best guys,
,,,Paddy,,,

Nigel said...

Thanks Paddy. It is indeed a blessing to fish all year round. Saw your posts... till next season!

Maygumi said...

Nice cr:) Luv the pics. Someday I am going to join u guys for some squid fishing!

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