Stormy Weather and a Wicked Ride

Treacherous winter weather in the Outer Banks forces captains to push their limits during North Carolina’s bluefin tuna season. Southern boat Reels of Fortune holds a meager lead over last year’s local champion Fishin’ Frenzy, while northern boat Hard Merchandise and local all-female team Reel Action have yet to catch a fish.

Captain Tami Gray, of local all-female boat Reel Action, feels the pressure of being one of only two boats that hasn’t landed a tuna yet. Her mates Jessie Anderson and Dita Young are starting to question her ability as a captain and Tami knows she’s letting them down. But with bad weather rolling in, it will be a rough ride for the trio’s bid to catch their first tuna of the season.

Bad news gets worse.
Bad news gets worse for Marciano. Photograph by National Geographic Channels

Northern captain Dave Marciano of Hard Merchandise is also feeling the tension (or lack there of) on their bare lines. Marciano and his nephew Jay came to North Caroline raring to go and full of confidence after having their best fishing season ever in Gloucester, but it’s clear that they’re going to have to check their egos if they want to pull in a payload. Since arriving in Wanchese, they’ve been dipping into the financial well of last season and following the recent disaster at the Oregon Inlet’s Bonner Bridge that well is getting drier.

(Also see “Q&A With Captain Dave Marciano.”)

Like the saying goes, “if you’re not first you’re last.” Third place isn’t quite sitting well with Pinwheel’s captain Tyler McLaughlin and co-captain Paul Hebert. It’s now been a week since their first and only catch of the season, so they have little choice but to rough it out in the high winds and treacherous seas to put another Bluefin on deck. But will the risk be worth it?

Ride out the storm with the captains.  Dont miss  Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks | Wicked Ride TONIGHT at 9/8c.