This episode is called "Save Me". Motivated by something Johnathan Hillstrand said last week. Captain Johnathan is excited he even gave a shout out to his mom. I love that Johnathan and Andy always talk about their mom. I learned last week she runs their Time Bandit store.
Mike Rowe, Johnathan Hillstrand, Andy Hillstrand, Sig Hansen and Keith Colburn are at the table.
Johnathan is talking about the broken bones we keep hearing about. He said there were eight broken bones in four days. There were only twenty four of them out there fishing. That's eight Medivacs to St. Paul. Captain Andy said he talked to the Drs. there were broken fibia, tibia, hyper extended knees, broken ankles... Captain Johnathan says one guy was actually pinned under the deck. He said half the deck came up and pinned him under it. Captain Keith says when the deck starts attacking you, you know it's a bad day at the office. Andy says its called a false deck because it's usually about a foot off the steel where the actual deck of the boat is so the water can drain out.
Now they are showing clips of the swing steel pot. That is just so crazy. Captain Bill Wichrowski has joined the table. Johnathan is wondering what Wild Bill was saying while that was going down. Bill said it would have been all beeps. Captain Keith says he still has goose bumps from watching it. Captain Keith said it is so rare for that to happen. The knot going up like it did.
Evidently while the Captains were watching it Captain Andy said run you SOB run! Talking about Adam McCalden who was standing out on the deck not under cover. Johnathan said he didn't know which way to run, he should have run to the galley or upstairs with you. Bill said no, no he didn't want to be up there with me. Bill said everyone pretty much got out of the way, I was worried about equipment. Was it going to hit the wench, the coiler, are we going to take out the new table? Sig Hansen asks him if his luck is going to rub off on anyone at the table. They all laugh.
Mike Rowe asks what were you thinking? Bill says get control of the pot. Mike asks but how do you do it? Sig says the crane is there, you could swing the crane over, but then you are risking damaging the crane. Andy, he says the guys were all out of the way but how do you know? That thing could have snapped a line and that thing could have went under the forepeak and wiped everybody out. Johnathan says it could have hit the wheelhouse window and come right at you man. Andy, that's what you call the sh$t hitting the fan. Bill doesn't think it would have hit him. The other Captains aren't so sure.
Mike said they only had one swinging pot this season. But we've got waves. They call it "Wave Porn" LOL
They show crazy clips of waves. Waves knocking guys on their butts. Waves covering port holes, wheelhouses. There is one clip where the Wizard is in a trough in between waves and it just disappears. The waves hide the boat.
Captain Keith said guys that usually don't fall fell down. Freddie Maughtai fell three times and he probably hasn't fell that many times in ten years. Captain Andy says we don't need people writing in to say we are trying to kill people for TV now. It is just one of those things we got stuck out in the bad weather and that's what happens.
Captain Sig Hansen says we have a chase boat that follows us around. He got in trouble he had to go in to save his life. We're like we get it. Captain Keith says Sig Hansen has a picture of the Wizard that looks like an aerial shot because Sig's boat was so high up on the wave and the Wizard was down in the trough. Okay was Sig taking pictures during the middle of that storm or do you think someone else took the picture and gave it to Sig? Johnathan says it never looks the same on TV. It's kind of like a NASCAR track that looks flat but isn't. Alright! Johnathan got in a NASCAR reference. Yes the Hillstrand boys are NASCAR fans.
Sig Hansen says in their minds it's like this bad weather we can't fish. Captain Keith says it's 130 feet from the deck to the wheelhouse. So if a wave hits the wheelhouse window its up there. Keith says they took one wave where he dove out of the chair and the camera man was still standing there filming and he's going how often do you dive out of the chair? Keith screams never get down!
They are back with Archie Kalepa, a surfer/waterman. They've shown a clip of him surfing a monster wave. Captain Keith says if that wave right there hit the Wizard just right, it would have sunk us and he's on a six foot piece of fiberglass. Archie says that wave was 25-30 feet. Keith says oh. It sure looked a lot bigger than that. But Archie says they have ridden waves up to 70 feet. Mike Rowe asked do I even want to ask what happens if you fall off a 70 foot wave? Archie says you don't even want to think about falling. That's the one thing you keep thinking is don't fall don't fall. But if you do fall things go into slow motion, you gotta think relax and just go with it the minute if you start panicking that's how you use your oxygen. Johnathan asks you gotta hold your breath for how long? Archie says a wave that size three or four minutes. OMG think about it being on top of a 70 foot wave and falling would be like falling off of a 7 story building. Then you land in the water and the wave is now on top of you, you have to wait for it to go by, swim to the surface and probably get hit by another wave. Hunt a. You won't catch me doing that.
Archie Kalepa says if you guys ever get a chance to run with a rock on the bottom of the ocean. They all laugh at him. Mike is making a note to himself, run with rock. Archie says it's like being in a washing machine and holding your breath is so violent. Running with rock prepares you for riding waves like that. Mike Rowe says I want to make sure I'm hearing you right. You get a big rock and you are on the bottom of the ocean and you are running. Archie says yes. Mike says okay great. Sig says he went out with him. And he has such a deep profound respect for the water. Its like a spiritual thing with these guys. Like when we went out on his boat he's looking at the water and saying here's a dangerous place and here's why. Sig Hansen says it's not because of local knowledge, he understands what the water is about. That's the common denominator.
Archie Kalepa has brought out a dish of food called Opiihi. Opiihi diving is Hawaii's Deadliest Catch. It's called pounding Opiihi. Keith Colburn and Archie go out on the boat. They have a jet ski towing a platform that Keith is hanging on too the sides of, to head for the rocks. They have what is like a butter knife with a wrapped handle used for scraping the Opiihi off the rocks. They are in scuba suits and goggles. Try and imagine Captain Keith laying over a big rock cutting these things off the rock while getting slapped with waves. Then he's sitting on the rock collecting these things and putting them in a bag hanging from his hip. Then they hide behind the rock to keep from getting hit by the wave. As they are headed back to the big boat Keith holds up his goggles, they are shattered. Captain Keith says two words for that activity. Holy sh$t.
Captain Keith was trying to jump off a big rock to get back to the jet ski thing. When he was getting ready to jump the camera man that films the surfer said you have to time it. Keith said it was a ten foot wave then when he waited it was four foot. He tried to jump for the deeper part of the wave, evidently that is where the goggles got shattered and he bruised his chest. He said he had to jump or the next wave would have knocked him off the rock. For those of you who haven't seen After the Catch yet, if you've seen the episode of Deadliest Catch where one of the boats was washed ashore and got stuck on the rocks. The Coast Guard couldn't get to them because they were so close to a cliff. So they threw a pot ashore and followed the line onto shore. The rocks they were climbing over were kind of like the rocks Keith and Archie were pounding Opiihi on. Not exactly the same but the closest reference I can think of with the rocks and the waves pounding in on them.
Archie says Opiihi is an acquired taste, but watching Sig and Keith eat them made him hungry. I'm thinking no, won't try that either kind of looks like gold eyeballs. I'll pass.
They are showing clips of Captain Keith losing it on several different occasions. Keith says you know how it is you work twenty hours straight again, again, and again. Then your brother gets under your skin and needles a little bit more. Mike Rowe says we have two guys here who hardly ever loose their cool. Freddie Maughtai and Lenny Lekanoff. Mike says am I imagining things. Andy says no they are just like me, you cannot look at Lenny and not smile because he is always smiling.
Mike asks Lenny what's it like, he's always in your face do you even hear it anymore. Lenny says yes. To stay level headed and put up with someone like him, you have to take it in and absorb it for many years of fishing. He's the boss and I've been sent to my bunk and fired because I didn't like what he said. Mike says but it worked out. Lenny says yes I was back on deck ten minutes later. Keith says yes we go with the big hug and sorry I didn't mean that but I'm still in charge. Mike Rowe, but we've never seen that on TV. Keith no they aren't going to show that.
Captain Keith asks Freddie how many times he seen him explode last season. Freddie says not yet. He hopes it stays that way. Sig says you don't want to see him go off. Keith says this is a pretty scary guy, you don't want to be tag teamed by these guys. I think he means Lenny and Freddie. Keith asks you don't have more do you? Mike says there is so much on you, you are a case study. LOL Keith has his face buried in his hand.
They show footage that has not aired yet. Keith is on the phone and he tell's someone I don't know who, why don't you come over here and ask him yourself, alright? Then he hangs up the phone and says you know what. He gets up from his seat and hollers hey Carper! He's going down into the hallway telling someone you don't do sh$t around here. I've asked you to make me a pot of coffee three times this season and you don't because you are too busy sleeping. The guy says I'm too busy sleeping? Keith is headed to the galley the guy follows him. Keith turns around and says don't you get in my face, grabs him by the collar and pushes him all the way to the other end of the hall up into a bunk. Keith pushes him up against the bunk and says do you understand me. The guys says what the f was that Keith? What was that? You're out of line. You're out of line. You don't do that. Keith tells him to go to bed. Go to bed or get on deck, get out of my face. Keith tells him raise your voice one more time and you are going down bleeping bleep. The guy says who got in whose face Keith? Keith, do you know when to shut up or not? The guy says Keith you just. Keith cuts him off and tells him he's off deck, go lay down, he's confined to quarters. Dang Keith better calm down and go check his blood pressure.
They come back to the table. Keith has his head buried in his hands. Mike says that was Brad Carper a camera man on the Wizard and second thing, coffee? Really? Keith says it's a lot more than that. Don't tell me you guys haven't wanted to do that. Andy says no never. Dude you set yourself up for that. Keith says the thing is we are in like ten days straight of thirty waves or better the whole time. And we are doing our best to keep these guys alive and they sometimes are pretty young like this guy a greenhorn camera man. They lose. Johnathan says maybe you should have been talking about that instead of the coffee. Keith says yeah but you know how it is. It's one last straw. The straw to stir the coffee with that broke the camels back. Captain Bill said if he did make coffee I don't know if I'd a drank it after that. I agree Bill I saw that show where the guy pee'd in the coffee pot too.
Mike Rowe says to Sig Hansen I remember Mike Renner a camera guy, you came at him, I know you came at Renner, that was a couple of years ago. Sig says we all get rage, I'm sure we've all had it and having a camera guy on the boat is a learning curve for us too. Sig seems embarrased. It's like different personalities you have to meld and that's hard. I threatened to kick him off the boat. I might have thrown a camera over the side. Mike, you might have done that yeah. There might have been something about that. Johnathan Hillstrand says if you don't like someone on a boat, it's not like you are working with them nine to five where you hate his guts, you have to stay with that SOB for twenty four hours for two months.
Mike says I don't want to be on the end of anyone's rage but I think you would scare me most of all. He point's to Wild Bill because Wild precedes your name. What do you make of all this. Bill says in the old days, I went out on deck once and had two guys fighting. I picked them up and I smacked their heads together. Sig is nodding his head and smiling. LOL Then I took the one guy I was so mad I grabbed him by the rain gear and I threw him at the pot his feet were about that high off the ground. He shows about two feet. Then he says he actually crapped himself. Mike Rowe is losing it laughing now. Bill says the crew called and said hey Captain, we called this guy pickle he was one of the first guys to wear the green rain gear. They said you scared the sh$t out of pickle. Bill says yeah so what I meant to. They go no, he's afraid to come in the house to change his pants but he needs to change his pants. They are all laughing now. Now that's gotta make you wonder what Wild Bill was like in his younger days. I would love to just sit with the Captains and listen to these stories.
They come back from the commercial still joking about rage and coffee. Mike Fourtner has joined the table.
Captain Johnathan tells Mike Rowe that Mike Fourtner's feet have grown an inch in the last year. Mike Fourtner is 32 and still growing. He says he turned 29 he grew and inch and two sizes, it's random. Johnathan says he'll never get ahead, he's eating us out of house and home. Don't give him any vitamins.
Mike Rowe says to Mike Fourtner you got knocked around a little this year. So did you Lenny. Captain Keith Colburn says he almost go knocked out. That's a real thick skull. Lenny says yes I'll let you have that one. You don't want to go down cause everyone looks at you like, your slowing down.
Captain Andy says this guy he points to Mike Fourtner says I never get washed around. I never get hurt. It came out of his mouth. Mike Rowe you actually said that out loud? Mike Fourtner I said it and literally the very next day a wave took me off my feet and I slide across the deck.
They show more clips of injuries. They show Keith stitching up Lenny. They come back to the table, Mike Rowe says that looks like an episode of MASH or something. Mike Rowe asks Mike Fourtner what cut you the table or an actual crab. Mike Fourtner says he doesn't know. He was bent over the table sorting crab and the sky went dark. I could hear the water and I don't know if the water slammed my face on the table or if it blew me backwards and I hit something on the way by. Then the water cleared. Captain Johnathan says I think it was a crab leg, cause there was 400 pounds of crab on the table and there wasn't one crab left on that table when the water cleared. Thanks Johnathan that answered my question about whether the crab all get washed away when that happens. That really stinks for them. They finally pull in the crab, and all that work just gets washed away in seconds.
Andy says he was counting guys. Johnathan says they had one guy washed all the way over to the corner. Little Eddie Jr almost washed overboard. Good thing they have that big wall on the one side of the Time Bandit. Johnathan says that's when we shut down.
Mike Rowe says it's kind of interesting that a crab might have actually struck back. There's 300 of us, I think we can take him. They all laugh. Mike Fourtner that wasn't in the contract we have to fight the crab too.
Mike Rowe asks Captain Keith Colburn so that was you sewing him up? Keith yep, yep. He actually never flinched. He came in and put a band aid on it. I go wait wait wait let me see how this thing is. So I look and it's like a bullet hole. You could see the bone and tendon moving in there. I'm like Lenny that's not gonna fly.
Captain Andy asks was it a wave or something? Lenny says no I, it was an icy day. I ran in front of a pot we were setting back. I was running across and there's one place on deck that's real slick when we have ice, my feet just went side ways out from under me and I landed on my elbow. Keith says the bone is what. That almost sounds like Lenny had two separate incident's, on the show it only looks like one. I thought from the show when he got hit with the pot he hurt his elbow. I feel some rerun watching coming soon.
Johnathan cuts in, just for infection purposes cause it's so unsanitary out there with all the rotten bait. Lenny says that's what made me go in after and tell them I did it. Johnathan says when the pot comes over the rail the bait jars are draining in your face and that's three day old rotten bait.
Mike Rowe asks what kind of anesthetic do you use. Lenny none, nothing. Keith said nothing. Lenny said he wanted to give me something. I said are you kidding? Mike Rowe said you don't want the anesthetic when you are getting stitched up. Lenny says no. Mike Rowe asks are you sure you didn't get hit on the head? Lenny says I did. They aired that. They all laugh. Keith says he just wanted to get back to work. I had to pretty much force him to stitch it up. Mike Rowe, tough guy. I mean for real.
Andy said it was so bad this year that when we went in this year the first time and everyone was getting messed up. I met the doctor and I said it's been a while since I've done stitches. He goes oh yeah, three and one. We took an orange and I was actually practicing doing stitches.
So it's something seeing Keith doing stitches with the same kit we got. Johnathan says it's his dream to stitch somebody up. He'll come running when there is an injury (Johnathan hold his thumb and forefinger up to show a little half inch space) you need stitches. Mike Fourtner says there's nothing scarier. Johnathan say's he's such a doctor want to be. Mike Fourtner says every injury like this one here that I had. (He points to his eyebrow.) You might need stitches. Johnathan asks how many times have you tried to stitch me up. Mike Rowe says your eye needs a stitch. Mike Fourtner says I don't want you to stitch me. I'm good. Andy says I was jealous when I saw the needle going through his arm. Keith said it's kind of rubbery skin there to, I had to kinda dig to get it in there. Mike Rowe says okay that's super. I don't think Mike Rowe wanted to hear that part.
Mike Rowe looks at Sig Hansen and asks if he ever stitched any one up? Sig says yeah I've stitched my brother. He got hit with a chunk of ice on his head, so we shaved him and stitched him up. We actually used dental floss to stitch him. Mike Rowe asks minted or waxed? Captain Sig says unscented.
Nick Mavar has joined the table. Mike Rowe says let me look at your nose. You look beautiful. Andy says look at that George Clooney. Nick says he hasn't got the bill yet. Mike Rowe asks the Captains if they have all seen this footage. Andy says he hasn't. Nick says he hasn't. Mike Rowe says oh are you in for a treat. This is you with a one on one meeting with a piece of steel. They show the clip of Nick getting hit in the nose. They come back the Captains are all laughing probably at Matt Bradley calling Nick Mavar manimal.
Mike Rowe says that was in slow motion where the hook hit him. Sig explains to the others what happened. Keith said it was another one of those one in a million things. Sig says and he was standing in a safe place. Nick says and the camera guy was two feet from me. Sig says if that would have hit him in the temple could you imagine? Nick says it would have killed me. If it would have hit me in the teeth it would have took them all out. It was the perfect spot. Nick said you know what's funny. I went down as soon as I got hit and I go this isn't good, cause my head was ringing. I really thought I was cut like this. He uses his hand to draw a line from his temple around to the front of his face. He says I looked down and all this blood is coming so I ran into the wheelhouse and they say lay down, lay down. So I'm laying down for about a minute and my nose is broken so I'm starting to choke on blood. I go no let me up, let me up. He comes down and wipes me off and everyone starts laughing and I go what's wrong? He (points to Sig) goes your nose is broken.
Mike Rowe says it was on the side of your face. I think Andy said you got it fixed after the season though. Sig says yeah he could breathe that's all we cared about. Nick says Sig was on the phone immediately after it happened to the hospital. Johnathan says we heard what had happened. Sig says now we can call a doctor so we had a doctor on the line. We at least had medical attention, and as long as he could breathe we are good.
It didn't look pretty, but the guy never missed a beat. He went right back out and went working. Mike Rowe says you went back on the deck like a half hour later? Nick said he wanted me to take time off. I said no give me some tissue. So I stuck it up my nose, then I started beating the ice and it started flowing again, and I go maybe I shouldn't be doing this. Andy said he could've said I'm done. They would have taken him in he would have gotten paid for the rest of the season, they would have got someone else out there. Sig says most guys would have left. Nick says I was more concerned cause we were almost full and we had due dates to get in there but we had another day or two. And Sig goes go lay down, and I'm like no we gotta fill up.
They show a picture of Nick's nose all taped up after surgery. If you watched CatchCon, you know how it was taped up. Kind of like a capital I on his nose. Sig says we were laughing cause we gotta buy him a new nose. He didn't know if we should buy him a George Clooney or a Brad Pit. Andy says obviously you bought him neither. Nick says he hasn't got the bill. I went to the best hospital and the best plastic surgeon. Sig says it's gonna sting a little but that's okay. I'm just glad you are alive and here to tell us. Nice says if it would of hit me in the teeth I was out. Mike Rowe asks you've been on the water how long? Nick, 1976. Mike Rowe asks how many injuries. Nick says never. I've never broken a bone, I've never had a stitch in my body, he knocks on wood. Mike Rowe says you had a good run, now all of a sudden here you are in a featured clip. Congratulations. Would you guys be careful for crying out loud.
Captain Scott Campbell has joined the table. Mike Rowe brings up Junior losing "Moose" Keith Kriner two years ago. Mike Rowe says it's always gotta be on your mind. Captain Scott said when it happened he wanted to quit fishing. I wanted to get on a plane and leave but my crew came up to me and said we got full confidence in you. There was nothing you could have prevented it was a freak accident. I realized that I had five other families that I needed to provide for. We needed to make some money. I untied the lines, I puked about five times out there. I was so nervous I didn't know if I could pull the boat away from the dock.
Mike Rowe, well obviously you did and you know what Moose wasn't featured on the show but we have some footage of him. They show a clip, for those of you who don't know or don't remember Keith "Moose" Kriner was caught in the bite. He wasn't a greenhorn, he was a veteran. He had fished with Scott for eight years and probably fished another ten before that. Scott says if it was something I had done, or if I had caused that accident. I couldn't have lived with myself. It wasn't the rough weather. The rough weather doesn't scare me because everyone is on guard. It's when we get the nice weather, the suns out and we're having a great day that people start thinking about home. Andy says more accidents happen the last three days of the season.
Nick is almost in tears. He says I'm very emotional right now because I lost somebody. Mike Rowe says you were out on Salmon. Mike asks how long ago? Nick says three years ago now. Andy pats Nick on the back. Nick says he was driving and he went off the deck, a beautiful day like you said. I was driving about twenty minutes and I looked back and he was just gone.
Scott says he thinks about it every day. He was one of my best friends. Sig says we've all had our close calls, thousands. It's a mission. Scott said it's the ugly side of our industry. Mike Fourtner says we don't sign up for that, but we know the risk it's the world's most dangerous job. They call it that for a reason.
Mike Rowe says sometimes it's not even when you are on the boat. And for you guys with JT (Justin Tennison) Sometimes with you guys you brave incredible odds and for your guy to go the way he did. A lot of people still haven't wrapped their heads around it. Johnathan says there is nothing to learn from that except if you wake up, it's a good day. They show a clip of Justin Tennison.
Mike Rowe ask Andy how did he die? Andy can not speak. Mike asks Johnathan how did he die? Johnathan says he had sleep apnea, and his mom died when he was six. He had a six year old son. Johnathan gets up and walks away from the table. Mike Rowe says he went to bed one night in a motel and didn't wake up.
You know. And that's, like you started Junior what can you say. Scott says that's the thing about this industry it's knowing that when you get on that plane you don't know if you are ever coming back to see your family. Or if one of your crew is. That's the tough thing about it. When you kiss your kids good bye that could be the last time you ever see them. Accidents happen and your times up. We're dancing with the devil out there.
Sig Hansen says he got a job on a boat once. And I busted my ankle jumping on, so I lost my job. But then when they left, we never saw them again. I was supposed to be there. Mike Fourtner says JT was his roommate and over the course of the season we would lay there and talk. Johnathan, It was the happiest year of his life. Mike Fourtner, It was the best he had done in twenty five years. Mike Rowe, as Hemmingway said He was living all the way up. Nick what was the name of your guy? Nick, Ben. They raise a drink to Ben, Moose and JT.
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