My Fishing Adventures On The East Coast (final Week)

I have finally made it to the last week of the lobster fishing season here on the west side of Cape Breton island. I am feeling very relieved that I know I only have a few more days to go. The captain was able to get the boat running again on Tuesday night, but with the strong winds on Wednesday the Skipper decided to hold off going out just incase the part failed and we ended up stuck out in the ocean in rough seas. well we made up for not going out on Wednesday, on Thursday ha ha ha. We ended testing out the new parts that had been installed by putting a good 16 hour day on the water. We had a good haul of lobster to show for it too, I guess the traps had been sitting for a few days again so its a good thing we got a good haul.

during down time I try to lay low, Fishing from the peers, taking hikes, watching sunsets, and taking pictures, anything to keep my mind busy really. I had a bit of a tough day on Tuesday this week. My son graduated elementary school, and I was not around to watch him and celebrate the end of an era, and the beginning of a new chapter in his life. Not being on the water that day was hard, but it is the last week of the season and ill be on my way home soon.

Like I mentioned I had taken a few pics here are a few of my favorite ones for the week.

DSC_0896seagull fighting for some bait I threw

DSC_0829A fox just checkin me out

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sunsetcaught this whale breach during a sunset the other day

 

My Fishing Adventures On The East Coast – continues

The further into the season we get the harder it seems to be going for Captain Jody. As I wrote in the last blog our boat had been broken down, well things have not changed a week later. Now I’m not much of a mechanic but the problem with the boat I believe would normally be an easy fix, but with our boat, because of the age of it, it’s near impossible to find parts to replace broken ones. This problem proves no different, the captain had ordered a new tamper plate and when it arrived it was the wrong size. So the skipper drove to Charlottetown PEI and got the only machinist he could find to rotor the plate to size and drill the holes in the proper place so it would fit. After a 13 hour return trip we come to find the plate will not line up properly and the boat is still dead in the water.

DSC_0747(our boat sits sideways unable to move)

On Friday morning I got a knock on the trailer door to Capt Andy’s helper asking if I would come out to help them for the day. since our boat was still down and not knowing where my captain was or weather the boat would be fixed that day I decided I would go and help Andy out for the day and try and make a bit of extra pocket cash.

The day with CPT Andy and crew was interesting, I was able to see how another fisherman operates and with the extra hand on board the day seemed to fly by, it really made a huge difference. When we had returned to the wharf Capt Jody’s boat had not moved and was still dead in the water.

On Saturday Jody had returned with the part machined and ready to install. The plan was to install the part and be on the water to run at least half our traps by 2pm ish, but the mechanic we expected to do the job did not show up to do the work. It wasn’t until late that afternoon when we were able to find a mechanic to come have a look. Once everyone had figured out what was going on, the mechanic left to re-drill the holes and returned only to find that the part, still would not fit into place once again and we were still dead in the water, so off I went to the cole mines harbour to see if I could catch up with my buddy Liam LoL.

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Feeling that this problem with our boat would not be handled by anyone until Monday morning CAPTJody had decided to take out his Father’s  (Capt Wayne’s) boat on Sunday morning to run his traps and giving us fresh bait in the traps and hope there were some lobsters to try and salvage some of his loss for the week.

What a good way for me to spend Father’s day a 16.5 hour day on the water to take my mind off of spending time with family. To our surprize the traps were full. It made for a hard day re-baiting the traps as there was not a lick of bait left in any of the traps but the lobsters were plentiful. We even got a blue lobster. It is pretty special to get a blue lobster as they are extremely rare, just to give you an idea my captain has been fishing lobster for approx 25years and he has only ever seen 1 before, about 10years ago. Apparently this one was quite a bit bigger than the last one weighing approx 5lbs or more. After a few quick pictures we decided to let the beast go to hopefully spawn some more of its kind in the future.

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This was the 3rd boat (out of 10 boats) I have worked on in this harbour alone, since the start of the season. Well I came here for an experience and I’m beginning to think I’m getting what I asked for LOL.

just a random pic I decided to through into the mix LOL

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My Fishing Adventures On The East Coast (the week of pain)

Wow what a week LOL this week was packed full of surprises. As I had mentioned in my last post on Monday we started the week by breaking down and getting towed back to the wharf. Tuesday went fairly well however the weather was a bit on the rough side but what do I expect,  I guess we cant have great we ather all the time.

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On  Wednesday we fueled the boat first thing in the morning and I think we may have made it about 6 maybe 7 feet from the wharf when the boat lost all power again and we blew back to the dock and tied up, the day was a write off. both Wednesday and Thursday we were going nowhere as the boat needed a bit of TLC. as we finished the repairs to the boat at about midnight Thursday it was late to bed and early to rise so we could try and play catch up baiting traps and banding claws.

the wind was blowing hard on Friday and a north wind at that. The Captain seems to always get seasick with the north winds and this time was no different. as the day moved on and the skipper feeling ill he wasn’t about to go in as we had missed to much fishing time this week already. we were hauling  traps as we normally would when the rope tightened right up and stopped the hauler dead in its tracks, as the skipper reached out to the rope to try and shake it free ( it sometimes works), the rope sprung out of the hauler sending the 20lbs metal wheel (called the block) straight into the skippers head. hardly a peep out of his mouth he went down on one knee holding his head. I didn’t really see what had just happened I thought the rope had hit him, not the block. anyway with the skippers head bleeding and him feeling seasick he now had a giant headache to boot. anyway ill give it up for the CPT he toughed through it and worked the rest of the day.

Saturday was not gentle on us either with large rolly waves in the morning and rain most of the day another long day but the week was done for the Skip.

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As for me Sunday at 2am I had a knock on the trailer door to start my first day as on a crab boat.

the ride out to the crab grounds was about 2 hours of decent sea’s but by the time we were ready to start hauling crab traps the wind was blowing a north wind, about 25km North wind too.

as the waves hit the boat one at a time relentlessly throughout the day it slowly started making me loose by sea legs LOL by about 5pm the boat was going one way and I was going the other, I wasn’t sick but totally disoriented. I have now experienced lots of different types of fishing and this by far was the hardest longest 20.5 hours I have ever put on the water. at 10:30pm we were back at the wharf and I cant remember the 25foot walk back to my trailer, and believe I was asleep before I hit my pillow.

Monday morning came fast and furious at 4:30 am to start week 6 (I think) of the lobster season. The Skipper had somewhere to be and with the winds blowing hard on the Sunday the harvest wasn’t great so we were in by 3pm an early day for us. once we unloaded our catch at the wharf we were heading across the harbour to our regular parking spot when we lost all power to the boat again. me standing at the stern ready to jump onto the floating dock to tie off was wondering why the boat started going sideways towards other parked vessels I yelled to the skipper to PUT HER IN REVERSE when he replied ” I GOT NOTTIN” Moving quickly to push us off the other boats we were about to hit we managed to get the old girl nosed into the wharf and tied off. The Boat was dead in the water and the transmission was finally dead.

As bad as I feel for the captain about this, truth be told I was happy to get a day off LOL it has been a long week, with the break downs I had still had approx 80 to 90 hours on the water in the past 7 days. although I hope the problem can be fixed fairly quickly or the season may be done for the skipper and I.

 

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My Fishing Adventuress On The East Coast

Well its the start of the 6th week of the 2015 lobster season here in Cape Breton and I was getting ready to start a long 15 day straight of fishing as I am hoping to get out on a crab boat this coming Sunday. the captain and I were out for a couple of hours when the boat lost all power on the ocean. after taking a quick look to see if it would be an easy fix we could not get the boat back in motion.

The skipper made a quick call on the VHF to a nearby boat captained by Jackie Rankin another local fisherman. Soon we were being hauled back to the harbour to find out what the problem was.

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once back at the wharf it wasn’t long before the Skipper found the root of the issue, a couple of bolts had snapped off a flange attached to the shaft that turns the prop of the boat. The skipper took off to the local mechanics and my day had turned into a short one but I guess the problem could have been worse. now its a waiting game to get back on the water.

My Fishing Adventure On The East Coast

My fishing adventure on the East Coast

Fishing week number 4 started off cold but with lots of lobsters hitting the wash board. After a bit of a wild Saturday night which took most of Sunday to recover I was feeling a bit under the weather even on Monday morning, nevertheless after a few hours it was back to normal on deck. Wednesday was blowing hard and the skipper decided against going out, a day off mid week was a welcome treat. Thursday was yet another day off as the Captain’s wife had gone into labour with their 6th child. A baby Boy was born to the Rankin Family On Thursday June 5th 2015. Congratulations guy’s.

On Friday it was back to work, our traps had now been sitting for a few day’s and the lobsters were many. An exhausting 13hour day which I did not mind as I had just had a couple days off and Sunday was fast approaching my scheduled day off every week.

(this lobster didn’t quite fit into the sorting tube normally when a lobster is in the tube all we see are the tip of the claws)

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Friday around mid day I had seen my first sign of marine life other than the lobster and a few random fish coming up in the traps from time to time. As I was hard at work banding a tonne of lobsters that had filled my sorting table The captain and I heard a splashing off the stern of the boat, so I looked up and only feet away from the boat was a enormous whale, I stopped what I was doing to go have a look. This whale was longer than the boat and as I looked over the side of the boat all I saw was an eye attached to the massive mammal looking back at me, It did not seemed bothered by us at all and slowly moved on and passed us directly underneath the boat. I did not have a chance to get a shot of the whale this time but hopefully there are a few more chances before the end of the season as this is one of the marine animals I was hoping to get a chance to see.  Seeing this kind of marine life is what makes doing this job all worthwhile. I felt quickly humbled by the giant of the sea as I realized that I was in his/hers home and if it did not want us there I was sure it would not have had a problem removing us but as it was the Whale had left us alone to do our job and we continued on our daily duties. After Fridays long day Saturday came fast, rainy and wet really a miserable kind of day, however once we started it seemed to fly by and were were in by 4:30pm, exhausted but ready to start my “weekend” or day off lol. Week 5 was complete. A bit more than half way through the season now,

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