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Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Angling at the Kuala Koh National Park, Gua Musang

Teddy on a boat at the Kuala Koh National Park, Kelantan
Last Saturday (9th February 2013), I took up the opportunity to went back to Gua Musang, Kelantan and planned a trip for an angling activity with my Kelantanese cousins at the Kuala Koh National Park. Our trip from the Gua Musang town took us almost an hour (around 60 KM) to Kuala Koh National Park by driving. The road we took was via Felda Ciku 3 and Felda Sg. Aring, Gua Musang. The journey was pretty rugged as we have to use the Felda road and I was having a hard time to maneuver my Perdana V6 when we had no option but to go through the winding road. The road was paved but was damaged from being used by the heavy lorry transporting palm oil fruit.

For the trip I brought my close cousins Faiz, Taufik and Miyu who are from the town of Gua Musang. This was my second trip to the Kuala Koh National Park after my first encounter with it when I attended one course in 2011. Ever since, I've been meaning to come back to this place as this is also the first place where my good friend Abang Farid introduce me to the angling activity (during the course). I didn't managed to get anything back then. It was my first try out okay! :p

Lovely view
We arrived at the Kuala Koh National Park Wildlife office around 7.00 pm which was quite late considering that the Renjer office closed at 7.00 pm. However there is still one Renjer that was on duty and he is more than happy to receive and process our application to enter the park and also completes in registering our angling license which last for a month (RM10 for each fishing rod and fishing net is prohibited). Later we spoke with one young boatman to bring us to a strategic spot for angling. It was a high season and taking into account of the long Chinese New Year holidays, the visitors are packed swarming the Kuala Koh National Park alongside the riverbank. The boatman suggested for us to habour at the Pulau Udang area (small island by the river bed) a strategic place for angling and yet to be occupied. We took his suggestion and paid him RM100 for the two way trip.

Me patiently waiting for the fish to take up bait by the river bank

The boat ride was real fun and the day was still sunny when we took the boat to Pulau Udang. Along the way, through our observation along the river bank was full of visitors that came with the same intention of angling. Most of the fish that are caught here are the types of Masheer (Kelah), Lampam Sungai, Arowana (Kelisa) and many more (there are some shrimps too - udang galah). We arrived at our spot around 7.30 pm and asked the boatman to come and pick us up around 12.00 noon the following day.

After settling in, we camped out and I prepared the temporary tent while my cousins start to assemble the fishing rods. We used the bait of palm fruits which are the favorites of the Kelah type. I was pretty confident that we can bring back something to remember. As far as I'm concern, angling is an activity which requires you to be really patient and passionate. Its not so much of catching the fish but to treasure and enjoy the surrounding mother nature and how lovely such a place can be especially during the night. Trust me, it worth every penny of it. You might learn one or two things about yourself. 

I have to admit it, angling perhaps is one of the activity that I missed doing it with my late father. I wasn't been blessed with such kind bonding experience with my father around Mother Nature. My bonding experience with him was only the time when we make kites together for my school project. I'll tell you all later about it. It's that moment while waiting for the fish to take up the bait, and you have that kind of a long opportunity for a conversation with your dad/ angling pal (we had that conversation among cousins that night, mostly about girls, hehe). It's the activity that a father and sons should do more often. Perhaps in the future, I might have such an opportunity with my future father in law or maybe with my own kids. Who knows, because God is wondrous, miracle do happens and I'm blessed. :-) I keep my fingers cross. 

Around 11.00 pm after we finished having supper, Faiz rod was disturbed by a movements. All of a sudden the rod was flying towards the river bed. We didn't have any slight chance of chasing and grabs it. I believe the bait was taken by a big Kelah because Faiz was using the shrimps bait (that he scurry under the small rocks nearby) and most of a big fish loves to take such bait. Nothing we can do about his rod except waiting for the daylight. I resort to sleep after that incident. While waiting for my eyes to shut I have a glimpse of the beautiful night at Kuala Koh National Park. It was really beautiful where the sky was clear dark blue and the stars were really shining. It was perfect! 

Cousins from back - Miyu, Taufik and Faiz

I woke up at 6.30 am finding Faiz was sleeping next to me. Miyu and Taufik were sleeping by the river bank still waiting for their rod to be snap by any fish. I don't know how they managed to doze of because the night was really cold. Thankfully it wasn't raining that night. I woke them up and asked them to go and have a bite because the day is still long. While waiting for them to go and eat breakfast, I waited by their fishing rod just staring at the river current. All of a sudden, the bells of Miyu rod vibrate incessantly and I knew it wasn't the current but something had taken the bait.

I grab the rod and called for Miyu, he was running like crazy and everyone was excited to see whether it will be our first catch of the day. Yes, indeed it was. Miyu pulled the strings and rolled the rod engine and managed to bring up a Masheer (Kelah) as bigger as my arms. We were really excited because it was my first ever experience of catching a Kelah. Miyu managed to unhook the fish and it lives to see another day. We put it in my icebox that was filled with water. The scales are shining red.

Masheer (Kelah) Fish that we caught

The morning went without any other incidents except Faiz that went down the river bed trying to look for his missing rod. It was lost for good alright. Then we resort of a short swim near the Pulau Udang. It was splendid but iced cold! At around 12.30 noon, while we were waiting for our boatman to arrive, my fishing rod caught something big. I tried to pulled it up and can feel that's something was pulling me in but couldn't managed to bring it closer. Miyu tried it for the second time but the rod snapped broken. He later asked me to hold the rod while he dives in to see whether the hook was caught between the dead logs in the river bed. It was a fish alright that took up my bait but maybe due to the harsh snap, it unhooked itself and taken off the bait with it. There you go, now we lost two good rods. But that's angling is and we are okay with it! :-)

Lovely view from our way back

The boatman arrived quite late due to many visitors coming up river. That's what he told us, but I know that's how boatman operates. Boatman never waits for the passenger  but the passenger shall wait for them. The oldest law of a boat transportation. We arrived at the Renjer office around 3.30 pm and we are so hungry (finished up our entire ration that morning). But still that evening many visitors still coming in waiting for the boat at the jetty. I took the long journey back to Gua Musang town and had our first meal of the day around 5.30 pm. It was really an enjoyable trip and I'm surely will be back for the angling activity at Kuala Koh National Park. This is Kuala Koh National Park, Gua Musang and I'm loving it!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Notice there are no tall trees after the neram trees. That is because so much illegal logging in Kuala Koh have resulted in this. The PAS govt is responsible. There was and still is illegal logging going in inside the borders of Taman Negara Kelantan!!!

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