It was the long the weekend, and it seemed like a good time to revisit Ubin for another try. I checked with Jess and Shawn and they were equally keen to try out. Therefore, come 5pm, we all met at Changi for quick bite and purchases of bite and fishign barungs and off we went. Jess came with a friend Stella, her tenant Ah Mao, her brother and Shawn.
Some sort of religious festival going on
Nice chinesey lanterns
Unfortunately, other people also had the same idea. Upon reaching the jetty, we were shocked to find it already occupied by some "camping" overnite folks with rods lining the whole of the Jetty. I am not very keen to be fighting for space for fishing, and I proposed to the rest how about trying an overniter at Mamam beach?
Our mini bus ride
From the Jetty, it will cost $10 for a mini bus to bring us here. Considering that there wer 8 of us, $10 was fair. So all of us bundled together and went cross country to the other end of Ubin. It was beginning to feel like quite an adventure, and frankly, I was quite excited about trying Mamam Beach overnight. It should be something to write about.
Imagine to my horrors upon reaching there, we found the entire beach lined up with campers. It felt like Bedok Jetty on Mainland Singapore. Singapore must indeed be running out of space to fish for folks to take the trouble to come all the way here.
The other end was packed. (Forgot to take a picture)
This is what fishing should be. An adventure :)
This guy is a good angler
The best place that we could park ourselves was quite away from the main spot facing the river opening. Nevertheless, we placed our mats, and gingerly setup all our equipment before the sky started to get dark soon. From the looks of it, it would indeed be very dark, with hardly any light source nearby.
A slimy Eel
There were fishes indeed, but we were catching stuff like puffers, eels, and catfishes on our live prawns. After about half an hour or so and with the sky getting dark, we felt that it was such a waste and decide to head back to the Jetty for better prospects.
That's a calcutta, a chio looking rod and a rod holder
Therefore, a quick call and soon we were on the mini bus headed back for the Jetty. Reaching there, immediately the Jetty felt windy and cool and it was a much better spot. The other group was there. We eventually found out that they were just 3 persons, but had a total of about 10 rods and many more handlines. These people meant serious business indeed. I spied high ended equipment like calcuttas, ultegras, rapala, shimano axis, G4 etc etc that I couldn't quite ID. The rods were all held on with rod holders clamping on the jetty railings, each with a light stick. They also had this long fishing net to scoop up catches. For bait, they had a big styrofoam box with neverending supply of live prawns. When the day broke, they still had prawns to be fishing. :O
Our group starting out in good spirts
So, we huddled to the opposite corner, and started our fishing. Again we were catching catfishes and eels on our live prawns. Just as were were getting dismay at this Ubin, when our neighbour caught a very big grouper. It was a 2 pounder catch. That certainly proved to us "right in the face" that there were good catches here. They went on catch a few more groupers when the tide was coming up. On our end, we were all faring very badly and our live prawns ran out. We had spent about half of our supply at Mamam and quite a number died on the way. Our neighbour had a never ending supply of live prawns. For each rods and handlines that they had, it was baited with live prawns all over. Fishing for us with dead prawn meat was getting catfishes one after the other. Ah Mao had some interesting small catches, one of which was an angel fish that I promptly asked to bring home to stock in my aquarium :).
The first grouper. 2 lbs
Only 1 word to describe this. POWER
The final blow to our egos was when our neighbour caught a dastardly big Baramundi!. I was at one corner doing my luring and missed all the action. When I caught on the commotion, I was looking with my jaws wide open at a whopping 8 pounder of a KBL thrashing on the floor. Holy toledo! At this time, my assessment of the trio had shot up to "bloodly experts", and they were to top it off with a very nice catch of a ACK around 1am. I was standing beside the rod and saw the line spooling out beautifully, something that had not happen to mine for a long time already.
Ah Mao with his many varied catches
Very nice ACK
Jess with the Angel fish that I was trying to keep
Ah Mao with his crab
The biggest eel that shawn caught
Throughout the night, even though I tried and tried with hardly enough sleep, I was getting zilch with my luring. I tried big squid jig, small squid jig, surface lures, diver lures, big lures, small lures, dark color, plastic grub - All nothing. Luring was certainly very tough here.
The biggest grouper did a prison break
3 of the biggest catch
On the way back
The tide became so low that fishing started to be meaningless. We waited till the daybreak and caught the first ferry back. Today, we were all shamed (especially me) by a threesome. From what I could see, they had lots of things. But once they were packed, it was all compressed into a haversack, a trolly with 2 boxes and a rod bag. These chaps were the pros indeed.