Sunday, July 19, 2009

Kapitan Larry's Pond Part 2 (July 19, 2009)

Remembering the disappointing trip last week, I decided to go to Coloong for a quick fish and hopefully to settle a score with the Apahap that got away. Left the house at 3:30pm and reached Kapitan Larry's pond at around 4:15. The flood was still high and the dikes were very soft. No choice, I cannot go to Lawak so I settled with the main pond near the videoke. It's a good thing nobody's singing.

At first, i tried a heavy vibrating lure and a couple of swim baits. No takers. I switched to a spinner bait by Bong. After the second cast on the corner of the pond, a solid strike. I thought it was a dalag because it does not jump and it runs really fast and really long. It swam from the corner of the pond near the kubo of Kap's crew up to the opposite corner near the entrance to the fishing huts. When it reached the huts, it surged up to the water's surface. It was a barramundi and a nice size too.

I remembered the mishap last weekend so I loosened the drag a bit to something like a kilo or less. It was a good thing I did because the hook was lodged outside of the mouth and could have torn the flesh.

It was an awesome fight and after 10 minutes or so, I landed the fish with my trusted lip grip.

It was not the 10+ kilos that got away last week but it was good enough (specially with the lure used).

5 kilos and it fell for Bong's amazing spinner bait.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Kapitan Larry's Pond (July 12, 2009)

We went to Kap's Lawak yesterday. My cousin JB was there to settle a score with a 3+kg Apahap that broke his leader and ran off with his swimbait. I was there to try out my new Abu BC rod that Purefishing sent me. A few months ago I got a lemon Berkley lightning rod that broke from an unlikely spot. Since I was not able to claim warranty from the local shop where I got it, I wrote to Purefishing Malaysia. Purefishing immediately agreed to replace the broken section. But upon checking their inventory, they no longer have the Berkley rod on stock. Instead, they decided to send me a new rod -- An Abu Garcia MH rod free of charge. Many thanks to Ho and his team from Purefishing Malaysia.

Anyway, the bangus and tilapia were not biting so I shifted to dalag using one of Bong's spinner bait. I was casting parallel to the banks and after half an hour of casting. I got a really hard strike. I thought it was a record-breaker dalag as it ran really hard and pulled my line even when my reel has a drag of 5lbs. The fish ran towards the middle of the pond and when i tried to re-gain line, the fish jumped ---- IT was not a dalag but a huge Apahap! It struck the tiny spinner bait. My estimate would be 8 to 9 kilos as it was definitely bigger than the one I caught from Aling Nene's pond.

I tried to gain line by pumping the rod. All my braid was out on its first run and my 12lb Mono backing is already showing. (I'm only using 125 yards of braid on my BC reel for dalag. The rest is mono backing). On my second attempt to gain line, the fish ran another 30 yards or so and then jumped again. After two runs and a couple of jumps, the fish may have tired (or so I thought) as I was able to gain a lot of line. When it was just about 3 yards away, and my cousin was about to net it, the fish again ran and made a third jump. On the last jump, the spinner's tiny hook did not hold. :envy: Sayang! It could have been another record for Bong's spinner bait.

I called up Mikko and he went to Bong's place before heading to the pond. Bong sent some heavy duty spinners and a gaff! When Mikko and RC arrived at Kap's past 2pm, the wind started to pick up and casting against the wind was extremely difficult so we decided to transfer to the main pond near Kap's entrance.

We casted for the rest of the day using swimbaits, spinners and soft plastics. JB got a strike later in the afternoon. The fish broke his large swimbait in two just missing the hook section. Now its 2 for the apahap and 0 for JB :) .

I shifted to 5-inch Kalin's Swimbait using the Abu rod. After an hour casting, something struck and I quickly set the hook. Somehow something is hooked but it is not fighting. To my surprice, it was a crate (water snake). It tried to taste the 5-inch Kalin:

RC unhooked and released the crate.

Just after 6pm, we went home with egos busted. Next time, we will get even ]:)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Zambales (July 5, 2009)

Last saturday, I tried casting for jacks using poppers, spoons, and skip bunny in the mouth of a river in the northern part of Zambales. There were small jacks and torsilyo (Cudas) that struck my trailer but no hookups. The fishes were just too small for my lure.

I also tried casting along the banks of a salt water lagoon in Masinloc town using the skip bunny and squid jigs. No takers on the bunnies and jigs. But I got confirmation that the area was full of really big squids. One of the fisherfolks showed me their catch in the morning. It was a big more-than-a-kilo squid. According to him, the big ones are in deeper water during daytime. At night, they come to the banks to feed. "If you want to catch them big ones, cast the jigs during a full moon on the banks."

Not wanting to waste the weekend without a catch, I went back yesterday to my favorite freshwater spot. Unfortunately, the dalags were ultra cautious. A lot of local fishermen are wading the area and laying down nets intended for tilapia and gurame. After they lay the net on an area, they start hitting the water with paddles to scare the fishes into their nets. Because of the commotion, dalags do not dare feed on the surface. Unfortunately for me, no strikes in the morning.

I went back at around lunch, when the fishermen are out on their break. Luckily, the dalags are hungry and I was rewarded with three nice fishes.

According to locals, you can easily determine the sex of dalags when they mature --- a long and slender dalag with big head is a male while the stout and fat dalag is a female.

This one is a she.

The one on the bottom is a more-than-a-kilo male and it gave me a really hard time. I was casting on top of a reed island when it struck on the opposite end of the bank. It peeled my line and dove under the lotus roots. No matter how I pulled, it just didn't move. I was forced to go down into the water to retrieve it. When I went down from the reed island, i sank into the water up to my neck. I didn't realize that the water was that deep. I had to crawl back into the island and wade around the deeper area to get to it.