Thursday, July 21, 2011

Alaskan Monster Hunt Hillstranded

I thought this was going to be a series. I was going to ask Captain Andy how many episodes would air, but I seen several people had already asked him. For now it is just one episode, but he says stay tuned. So maybe we will get more.

I haven't even watched the show yet, but I don't think you can have too much of the Hillstrands.

Well, let's see what the boys are up too.

I like the beginning. I’m John, that’s Andy, two brothers from Homer Alaska. When we’re not crab fishing you can bet we are doing something ridiculous. If it’s fun, scary, fast, dangerous or even stupid then we’re in. This time we’re going to catch a sea monster. That is if we don’t kill each other first.

Captain Jonathan If there’s a sea monster in our backyard I’m getting it. I love that line. 

They are 123 miles south of Anchorage on Kachemak Bay, the halibut fishing capital of the world, in Homer Alaska.

Their grandfather settled this land before Alaska was even a state. That’s pretty cool. Jonathan says growing up there they spent every day on the water trying to get into as much trouble as they could. The only thing their father could do was try to harness their need for adventure. So he taught the them what his dad taught him, how to be a Bering Sea crab fishermen. Since then we’ve never looked back.

So it seems the Hillstrand brothers haven’t changed much since they were little boys, they’ve always been crazy. But at least it’s a good crazy.

Kelly Nash, a Bristol Bay salmon fishermen took a video of what looks like a sea monster. The video looks like a big ole monster sized eel. When it raises what appears to be its head out of the water you can see it blow something out of the side, like a whale blow hole. Kelly says they are 20 to 30ft. long. They say it looks just like a Loch Ness Monster and they are right it does. Captain Andy asks where do you think they come from? Kelly Nash, I will bet they come from Lake Lliamna that’s where. They were headed up river and they’ve seen them in Lake Lliamna. Kelly thinks it’s the same creature migrating back and forth.

Captain Jonathan says he’s heard about this monster since he was a kid. Captain Andy says if we can catch it we will be world famous. Captain Andy tells Kelly you may have footage my friend but we will bring back a body. They are on a mission now.

They go to the Salty Dawg Saloon for a cold one. In the sixties their grandfather Earl owned this bar. Their dad designed the Time Bandit on a napkin there. How cool is that? I love learning some history on the Hillstrands. Jonathan says the Salty Dawg is like a second home to them.

They tell the waitress they just saw some footage of what looks like the Loch Ness Monster. She asks the boys if they’ve seen that before and points to a wall. Jonathan asks how long has that been there? A guy at the bar tells them years and years. Jonathan says I’ve never seen it before. Captain Andy says that’s because we’re usually drunk. He goes to the table and breaks the frame open. Why did you do that Andy? Now you’re gonna have to buy a new picture frame. Captain Andy is holding an article from the Bristol Bay Times dated August 14, 1987 titled Lake Monster. Jonathan has an article from 1959 he says there’s $100,000.00 reward to anyone who can prove there’s a monster in the lake. You know they’re going after this thing now. There was also two business cards in the picture frame.

Now they have the name of a crypto zoologist Paul Leblond. Great they looked it up so I don’t have too. A crypto zoologist means the study of and search for legendary animals like Sasquatch.

They show Paul the video. He says he sees a head, he actually sees two creatures. They point out where the thing is blowing something out of its head. Paul says you expect that of a whale but these don’t look like whales. It reminded me of a whale blow hole too. Paul says these are large animals, there’s a whole family of them. He says it’s probably propelling itself by its tail, but it’s not moving sideways like a fish. Paul Leblond says it looks like a cadborosaurus. People have spotted this monster on the coast of B.C., Washington State and all the way up to Alaska. It has a long neck, big eyes and swims really fast, people usually only see one. It’s a little bit like the plesiosaurus. Jonathan asks Paul if he’s ever seen anything like this. Paul says he’s seen still pictures that weren’t very good. He’s seen drawings and sketches. He says this raises the evidence to a whole new level. Jonathan wants to know what this thing eats. Paul says that cad probably eats salmon, birds on the surface, any kind of fish. Andy says salmon are headed up the Kvichak River all the way up to Lake Lliamna.

Paul says people have seen the creature from the air in Lake Lliamna. There’s something special about high latitudes lakes. Maybe that’s where this animal likes to live.

Paul Leblond says science is curiosity. Captain Jonathan, I like this guy he just made us scientists. Oh Lord we’re in trouble now.

Captain Jonathan, to catch the sea monster we’re going to need to right gear and the right bait. They’re headed for the gun shop right? No, it looks like they are in a sporting goods store. I was close they sell guns there. They’re getting fish hooks and line. Captain Jonathan finds a lure about 3ft. long he has taken off the wall. He says we gotta have that. They go to the checkout they have 44 shells, 2000lb. wire, seal bombs, black powder, fuses, harpoons, guns, some kind of stick and big hooks. Captain Andy says in this box we have a whole can of whoop ass.

They’re loading the stuff up on the Time Bandit. Eddie Uwekoolani, Sr. is there. Jonathan says no one else has caught this because they aren’t a Hillstrand. Captain Andy screams time to go kill a sea monster.

They are headed for Bristol Bay where the sea monster was last sighted. They’re headed out Jonathan says they have a list of rituals to give them good luck. I thought Jonathan said on After The Catch they were not superstitious. Captain Andy says if you leave on Friday that’s really bad luck. We know that. We watch Deadliest Catch hehe. Captain Jonathan says they have one drink at the dock, they go out and do a backwards counter clockwise Swedish spin because it shakes all the juju off the boat. They’ve never had a problem leaving on Friday doing that. So it must be Friday. And they’re off.

Jonathan is working on building a rig to catch the sea monster. He’s welding 55 gallon drums. He says they’re basically making a giant sized chicken rig, which is a line with a weight that goes down to the bottom of the ocean floor. A few feet above the bottom they will tie a hook baited with salmon. Captain Andy has straddled the 55 gallon drum like a horse. Captain Jonathan is pulling him around the deck. Jonathan says they are testing out theories for what they’re going to do on the lake, this is practice. The 55 gallon drum is going to be the bobber with a 12lb. weight. I wonder if that sea monster will fit in the tank once they catch it.

Looks like surf and turf for dinner. Those are some big ass crab legs. I’ll bet they taste good too. We know the boys can cook good from Rachel Ray. It looks like Scotty Hillstrand and Travis Loflan have joined in on this adventure.

Captain Andy’s on the Time Bandit and Travis and Jonathan take a smaller boat to go out and place the barrel rigs. It has been three hours and they’ve got no bites. So Captain Andy decides they need to try something different he has that three foot lure from the wall. Captain Andy has put the three foot lure on a fishing pole. Jonathan is driving the smaller boat pretty fast. I don’t know what they think they’re gonna do in that smaller boat if that creature jumps up and bites that lure. I am thinking it will take them for a ride. Then it happens. They lose the lure. Game over. The lure sunk.

They go to pull up the hook and check it. Oh look! They pulled up Captain Phil’s truck. LOL No they didn’t. They decided the monster isn’t there. Tomorrow they will go up the Kvichak River, but they can't take the Time Bandit because she draws too much water.

They go back to the Salty Dawg. Then they go to Alaska Fish & Game. They talk to Craig Schwanke a biologist to see what he can tell them. He tells them they have reports going all the way back to the fifties of sightings, but it’s not anything they track. Andy, we heard there was a $100,000.00 reward. Craig says at one time there was actually. Sounds like there’s not one anymore, darn the bad luck. Craig shows them on the map where the monster was last sighted. Craig tells them there’s been a lot of commercial fishermen, sports fishermen and five villages around the lake and no one’s ever caught anything. Andy, so you’re telling us we have a chance. Craig tells them good luck.

They head to Dillingham Airstrip to find Tim LaPorte, a pilot. Tim has seen the monster, up the bay in front of Pedro Bay. He says it was fifteen or sixteen feet long. He takes them up in the plane to see if they can spot the monster from the air. They are flying over Lake LIiamna.

Tim tells them to find a guy named John Beckler to get a fast boat. John tells them there’s no crab up here you know. Jonathan Hillstrand tells John Beckler he has a hook and shows him his sidearm he says it’s for mosquitoes. I’m surprised he didn’t bring the AK 47.

Jonathan asked John if he has a story for us. He asked if he’s ever hooked anything so big he couldn’t bring in. John Beckler says last year they did go out and try to catch the Lliamna Lake Monster. But it got away. That's what they all say.

John Beckler says there’ve been sightings near Pedro bay. Captain Jonathan says that’s one of the places they wanted to go.

Jonathan asked John Beckler what he thinks the monster could be. John Beckler thinks it could be a sturgeon. A sturgeon is a prehistoric fish covered in bony plates called scoots rather than scales they can grow over 18ft. long and weigh over 4000lbs.

Jonathan tells John Becklery he’s been around boats for as long as he can remember.

They spot some 55 gallon drums on the shoreline and get to work setting up rigs. They have 100lbs. of bait, rifles, pistols, and harpoons. They have everything known to man to kill something in the water with them.

They’re in a pretty small boat, I’m still concerned about that. I think the monsters bigger than the boat they’re in. So how are they gonna catch the monster without pulling themselves overboard. I do not see a crane on this boat either. They have 600ft. of 4000lb. test line.

Jonathan cuts the line to the boat, but Andy hasn’t started the motor yet. The boat is floating away from the dock and they can get it started. How embarrassing. John Beckler is on the dock trying not to laugh. I’ll bet this guy is wondering if he’s ever going see his boat again. The boat finely starts and Andy’s trying to turn the boat around and rams the dock. I can't believe you're letting them show that Andy. Okay Okay I know it’s not your boat, but seriously I’m laughing my butt off.

Jonathan is setting up the rigs the same way they did in Nushagak Bay. Lake Lliamna is the largest lake in Alaska. They’re in 211ft. of water. Captain Andy see’s something on the monitor that could very well be the monster. The first time they baited the hooks with cod. This time they’re going to add salmon and herring in the mix, because they really don’t know what the monster eats. They throw the barrel out and decide to go back to town for more bait while the barrels soak. I still don't see that 12lb. weight on a barrel slowing that monster down very much.

In town at the General Store, Andy and John are looking at a map when a man named John Adcox walks up and asks them what they are doing. They tell him there trying to catch the lake monster. Is everybody in Alaska named John? LOL John AdCox has also seen the monster. He says it’s 20ft. long. Captain Jonathan ask him if he thinks it’s prehistoric? John AdCox thinks it’s a huge fish of some kind. Captain Andy says this is a really big lake they wanna go to the deepest part. John AdCox says he’s been out there in swells so big he wished he was on the Time Bandit.

They get back to the boat with 60lbs. of bait. There is a guy there on an ATV who has also seen the monster about ten years ago. But he says he doesn’t tell anyone because they’ll think he’s crazy or wonder what he's smoking. Captain Andy says they’re gonna go catch this thing and bring it back and show him. The man says you’re not gonna get it.

They’ve reached the barrel and Captain Jonathan thinks it’s farther up than where they set it. Something was eating and on their fish. I think Andy’s losing his voice. Captain Jonathan says sea monster one Hillstrand’s zero.

They decide to set the barrels in Pedro bay because there’s only one way in and one way out. They set the barrels and then head back to town while they soak.

Lake Lliamna has a 1000 square miles of water, there’s not another soul on it. Jonathan says he's only seen one person all week. They said those crazy Hillstrand’s are going to be out there, we’re staying home. The lake is 80 miles long they’ve covered 40 miles in four days. They entered Pedro bay and searched for an hour, they can’t find their barrels. That monster took off with them. Captain Jonathan spots the barrel, it’s about a mile from where they left it. Something has chewed through the line, drug the barrel close to shore and twisted the lineup on the rocks. When they pull one of the hooks up the J shape now looks like an L. The monster chewed up that hook and spit it out. They’re going to shift gears and head to the north end of Pedro Bay.

Captain Andy is looking at something on his monitor. Jonathan walks up and says what’s that? Andy, hollers we got the target on the screen. Captain John says spin around. He walks out to the front of the boat. He’s standing topside. He looks over the side of the boat with his face really close to the water. Backup John! Didn’t you see Jaws? Jonathan says it’s right there, it’s right there in the water. I see something like green looking in the water. That’s an odd shade of green. Jonathan says it’s about 15ft. long and it is white. Jonathan has a fishing pole. I don't think that's going to cut it. Where's that 4000lb test line? I guess this is kinda like Marlin fishing. I think Jonathan needs to strap in. Jonathan’s got something on the pole. I don’t even know if that was baited. Jonathan’s screaming go, he’s running. The lines snaps.

Captain Andy says I had it punched dude. Captain Andy is beating the boat up with fishing pole. They both start laughing. Jonathan says he’s at least 15ft. long and Andy says he’s white. That thing was doing 12 or 15 knots. Jonathan says it had a white stripe down it’s back. He says that us being near it didn’t bother it. I had it man but it was too big to bring in. Jonathan says we’re pretty beaten right now, but we’re not broken, we always have a little bit left, you think we’re finished we’re not.

We started this adventure on a hunt for a Bering sea monster. We followed experts advice, eyewitnesses and our own instincts. They brought us to the Lliamna Lake Monster. I’m not sure what was on the end of my line but it can’t be caught.

That’s what I was saying before you started, not in a little boat anyway. I guess what we learned is that these legends exist for reason. There are creatures out there in the wild that will remain myths and legends Until the day they meet the Hillstrand brothers.

I can't believe it's over and they didn't get the monster. How can they leave us hanging like that? There has to be another episode so they can catch it. I really thought from the previews, Johnathan was going to shoot it. But he's an animal lover, so I should have know better. I was waiting for the to pop up in the water after they through the seal bombs in the water.

Captain Andy said he was bringing back the body. I wanted the body. What about the poor little crazy guy at the dock? You still have a monster in your back yard. You gotta catch this thing so we can see what it is.

Copyright © 2011 Virtualpatti. All Rights Reserved.


  1. Very Good show indeed ; had me on the edge of the couch; I spent ten years in the Commercial fishing field and have never ever seen hooks bent as bad as those from any creature.

  2. Anonymous, That was messed up wasn't it. I wanted them to catch that thing so bad so I could see it, but at the same time was afraid if they caught it would turn that little boat over because it seemed to be really large whatever it was.

  3. Yeah! I'm sure it had to be a monster. No way could T.V. manipulate a scene. Well, the cry babies' got what they wanted. Another chance to look like two Jackholes for money.

  4. OMG that is an awesome show I want more Hillstranded!!!!!
    Those guys are a blast I can not get enough

  5. Yep, I'm ready for episode 2 also!

  6. are they planning on killing it or just proving it exist? I hope and pray that they don't kill the poor thing. I only want them to prove it exist and reveal what it is without harming the creature once they do they should release it and let it go. there should be laws to protect it.

  7. It's obviously not a sea monster! It's big, but nothing amazing. These brothers are just morons.

  8. jeremy wade already theorized that the lake "monster" was a sturgeon, which can grow over 20 feet.


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