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FiR3 TiG3R

my lure & the lunker

18 posts in this topic

my 1st ever Toman/Malaysian Giant Snakehead(Channa micropeltes)

DATE: 08/12/05:

1730hrs:

i had just awaken from my slumber; rudely awakened actually by my pal who just called to cancel our daily(almost) evening fishing. my exams will begin on saturday, time is running out. i need to fully utilize the precious time left, for fishing. i promised myself i'd only fish for an hour, no more no less. it's a promise that i have yet to keep, period.

1745hrs:

armed and prepared, i set out to Ayer Keroh Lake once again. it was to be my 2nd only visit there since monday. my last catch on monday was a nice Sebarau aka Malaysian Jungle Perch/Hampala Barb(Hampala macrolepidota), caught almost at dusk, just before the sun said goodbye and welcomed the moon. the timing must be right, or so i thought.

1800hrs:

the sky was generally clear, with clumps of overhanging clouds. welcoming my arrival were 4 clumps of 'red clouds' in the water. these are schools of toman fries. at 2-3cm in size, there has to be about thousands of them! yes, spawning season has set in about 1 month ago. putting on my polarized sunnies, i caught a glimpse of a pair of tomans patrolling around their fries. and then another pair about 20 meters away with their offspring. speaking of overcrowding huh?

1805hrs: equipment set-up:

-rod: Shakespeare Intrepid Titanium IM7, 7'0", 8-17lb, medium light action

-reel: Daiwa CV-X 103

-line: Berkley Trilene Big Game 10lb, electric blue

-leader: 10 feet of 'caplang' brand 30lb clear mono

-lure: FiR3 TiG3R LuR3s' 'Tommy', 8cm topwater walk-the-dog pencil

tommy.jpg

sitting on the cement wall, the 1st cast was made, it landed right atop the surfacing red clouds. no takers. hmmm... the red cloud immediately dispersed. the water became calm if not for the zigzagging ripple left behind by my lure. so was the 2nd, 3rd & 4th. on the 5th, the water boiled from below, and greeted Tommy with a bang. FISH-ON! the medium-light rod bent like no tomorrow, and the drag which was set at 1/2 strength could not hold on; the line went out like banana-skin slippers on tiles. i held on for what felt like eternity (actually 5 minutes only...hehehe) and soon i was able to see the drillings of my wiffle spool. whatever's on the other end of the line has removed almost 75% of my line. i will be de-spooled if this goes on for another minute. short stroking did not help either, therefore the drag was incresed and then maxed. finally, it stopped moving. as i regained my line meter by meter, there it was, a beauty; greenish gold back with tiger striped pattern, definitely longer than my tibia and fatter than my calves. about 5 meters from my reach, it then made a fantastic dash for life, and my lure sprung back towards me, missing my hair,too close for comfort. upon closer inspection, the rear treble gave up on me. i SWORE & CURSED for like 10 seconds, for my inexperience, and dissapointment, for i have lost my 1st ever momma toman. down but not out, i affixed a stronger treble and vowed to regain what i have lost. it took me a total of 15 mins to subdue this fella, the 2nd best 15 mins of my life. the small crowd that gathered behind me gave the 'AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW..." sound. i just smiled, although i find it hard, with an 'L' over my forehead.

opened treble of my lure:

mamatomana.jpg

1630hrs:

like a stalker, i followed the path of the red cloud to the other end of the lake, frantically searching for the surfacing guardians. at last, the target was within the reach of this set-up. i retied the leader to my mainline, rechecked the trebles & connections, drag settings and reconfirmed my determination. this time, Tommy landed on the bullseye & was greeted as it touched the water, on the very 1st cast. the small crowd that gathered(yes they followed me to the other end of the lake!!!) broke into a frenzy! i just didn't know what to do as it was too sudden! again, the 10lb blue line shot out like lightning. but this time i was able to control the drag properly, and change it's pathway with gentle movements of my rod. after 10 long minutes, it was subdued, to the claps of the crowd. i could see the beautiful motifs of it's back, like a well made batik fit for royalty.

"YESSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!" oh the feeling, especially after losing the previous battle! if i am not mistaken, i'll rate this fella's fight ~75% of the 1st one. but as u all know, The-One-That-Got-Away will always be the one that got away.

towards the bank:

mamatoman001a.jpg

hefty, isn't it?

mamatoman002a.jpg

poor Tommy needs cosmetic surgery now:

mamatoman003a.jpg

a self-taken portrait of the angler & his prize:

mamatoman004a.jpg

pic with help from the crowd. i was apprehensive to hold the fish at the sight of it's surgical-grade scalpel-sharp dentitions! afterall, this is my 1st toman, pardon the inexperience!

mamatoman005a.jpg

sayonara for making my day, now go back to ur kiddies, and protect them from the wandering Sebaraus who are after them. thanx for the memory, my 1st toman!

mamatoman006a.jpg

1845hrs:

for the 1st time in my life, i actually sticked to the 1hr self-imposed time limit. many first's for me today. 1st toman, and 1st fish on my new rod. hope they won't be the last!

thanx for reading.

LOGOUT FiR3 TiG3R

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Thanks a ton for posting this. It was a great read for me this morning as I prepare for the daily work schedule. I definately like the story-telling aspect and that's a beautiful fish! Congratulations!

-Danny

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Nice story and killer fish (love the markings on it, would make a sweet pattern on that lure design of yours)

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Great fish story and those Toman are attractive animals! That feeling of affirmation you get when a big fish tries to kill a crankbait you handcrafted is huge, isn't it?

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guys,

thanx for the kind words, friends of the same interest. if not for u guys at TU, my lures would've remained as blueprints. once again thanx! :)

this lure of mine 'Tommy' was intended to resemble a juvenile Toman. big tomans are very caring parents for their young, and will fend off any intruders trying to take a bite at their fries, including the neighbor's adolescent son/daughter who comes uninvited hehehehe...so i thought why not make an intruding punk?

here's another pic showing a fellow juvenile at just 8 inches attacking my lure. no brotherly love at all in this dog-eat-dog world:

tommy056.jpg

if u guys ever drop by SouthEastAsia, do fish for the giant snakehead, i'm sure it will be a fight to remember!

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Very nice post, Awsome pictures, Nice fish, Great lure !

Are these fresh water species ? never herd of or seen them before, but they have a nice look. I'm sure it would be very interesting for a Canadian like myself to visit Asia for some fishing, not having a clue what you might reel in.

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Nice bait and great fish keep up the nice work I like the shape how does it run I love the story no matter where you go in the world fisherman are fisherman

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awesome lure and fish.congratulations.

that is a nice looking fish.i have never seen one.thanks for sharing your pictures.

the shape and Finn's remind me of a fish we call a mud or dog fish.but its real name is bowfinn.but the coloring is completely different.

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read ur storry. Nice one, we all know the feeling of one getting away. :(. I even know the feeling of those trebles giving up on you.

I didn't find good trebles last year for about 5-6 lures, so i bought what i found(big mistake). I had a first good strike, the drag started running like crazy, and puf, the fish was gone. When i got the lure out 2 hoocks on the belly treble wee straightened out like needles, i didi the same thing u did, but for more than 10 seconds..... :oops:

And the day went on, and had some other misfortunes with these trebles, and i didn't have any lures on me that had the same treble size, so i couldn't do nothing, but adjust the drag somehow, but no good. Caught 1 fish and lost 2 or 3. 2 of them an like crazy(and i can't even tell how big they were).

So i promissed i would never do that mistake again.

But it happened again with some hollow mustad hoocks, The hook on that eventually straightened, and finally broke.... THE END

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For all you fresh water guys hunting big fish, use VMX 3x or 4x trebles. That is the prescription for we Saltwater advocates.

FiR3 TiG3R, "this is my 1st toman, pardon the inexperience!" 1st Toman, I thought you meant 1st Woman..... :grin:

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The Internet is a beautiful thing. A fish tale, complete with pics, from halfway around the world. Congrats.

So, did you weigh it? Looks like around 6 lbs (2 1/2-3 kilos?) to me.

My dad lives in Thailand. Guess if I ever get there, I should bring a rod or two.

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husky,

thanx for the pointers. hehehhe...woman...i thought the same thing when i re-read what i typed!

scoop

thanx. yes you should try it. best if u can visit BungSamLan lake...have u heard of Jean Francois-Helias? the french with tonnes of IGFA records, specializing in asian fishes. if u can book him as your guide...i bet he'll show u wonders.

for more info about asian fishes, have a peek here for starters:

http://www.carpecarpio.com/igfasiamesegiantcarprecord.html

http://www.carpecarpio.com/exoticfishpictures.html

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That was surely a great evening for you and especially a great story for the rest of us. I will guarantee you had a captive audience from more than just me. Thanks for sharing that so beautifully with us.The feeling of catching a fish on one of our own baits is hard to describe but you presented it greatly.Maybe you should take up sportswriting :D I wish for you many more memories just like that one.

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hoodaddy,

thanx for the kind words. since i am from halfway around the world, just thought i's share something different from ur regular bass & muskies!

sportswriter? nah, don't think i can make the cut! i write for the fun of it, that one went well coz i was too happy catching my 1st snakehead on my lure hehehehe...

hope to hear more from u guys.

p/s; i just found out there's a PROPER SECTIOn to post these catch report things...oops, my bad.

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Nice Fish! It's so rewarding to hunt down and stalk fish that you know the location of.

I would like to pass on a tip given to me years ago by a senior angler on a salmon stream. He said, " Son, you want to remove that plastic from the grip of your new rod 'cause mold will form on the cork if water gets inside." Besides, you might as well enjoy the classic feel of a nice cork grip.

Fish hard!

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