My husband Naweshad and his cousins grew up with fishing as one of the activities that brought them together. Their adventurous and fruitful deep sea trip to Port Dickson was a story that I heard of most. Naturally, when a deep sea fishing topic came up during a family gathering not too long ago, Port Dickson was the destination of choice.
We adjourned to a nearby coffee shop to plan for the trip and search for a reliable boatman. Most of the recommended ones were booked, whilst the others were not willing to head out as sea conditions were not recommended for fishing. We googled with perseverance, for the love of fishing, and it wasn’t long before we found ourselves a boatman with a decent boat that could accommodate all of us for a decent price.
We were cautioned that sea conditions were rough and chances of catching fish was low but in our boatman Kassim we trust!
Though I have been on boat rides before, I have never tried going fishing out at sea. The combination of fear and excitement was accompanied with my need to reward my curiosity of “fishing in the deep sea”. With no knowledge of what lies beneath and out there, possibilities were endless and I was ready to hook, line and sinker, dragging my worries and fears along with me if I had to.
After an hour out to sea with choppy waters, grey skies and the battle with sea-sickness, we arrived and dropped our lines into the deep, waiting patiently for a bite.
It wasn’t long before my husband’s line was pulled from his reel, gently, yet heavy enough to bend the rod. He sets the hook and began reeling in against the current, waves and nausea. The difficulty in reeling it in was evident.
After 15 minutes of continuous reeling, we wondered if there truly was a fish at the end of the line, Naweshad however was convinced that he was reeling in a Stringray, we laughed at his confidence whilst Kasim checks on his line to confirm that there was a fish and he needs to continue fighting it. Finally, we saw colour… not JUST colour, we saw a long tail smacking the surface and instantly we all knew, that it indeed was a Stingray! A very big one at that too! We were all excited as Kasim confidently lifts the ray out of the water and into the ice box.
By then, water conditions were worsening and we needed to move closer to shore. The spot we arrived in however was rather depressing, we somehow knew that the species available will not satisfy our hunt for fishes with a vicious fight. We were right. Tiny Soldier Croakers and Silver Whiting took our bait. The sun was shining and we were getting agitated- soon the guys made a request to go trolling around a small island which landed them Barracudas, King Threadfin and a Garfish the last they went. Kasim was kind enough to oblige.
The boys were right. Our lures were set out, we were trolling and cousin Riz’s Penn reel started screaming- music to our ears! He started reeling in with the look of determination and might, at the end of his line was a Barracuda, we all celebrated!
This was the sign that more were out there. Once more, Riz’s reel started screaming, this time, the fish surfaced but managed to free itself from the hook, seconds before we took it into the boat. He lost a beautiful Spanish Mackerel. That broke all our hearts…
We continued trolling however nothing was taking our lure as the tide started to change.
We ended our trip with grilled Stingray for dinner, weighing in at an estimated 8kg’s, maybe more, unfortunately, the weight of the fish sent the regular weighing scale spinning like crazy and the weight had to be an estimate.