Eleven days into North Carolina’s Bluefin tuna season, treacherous winter weather in the Outer Banks fishing grounds forces captains to their limits. 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.
It’s a close gap between first and second place for Reels of Fortune and Fishin’ Frenzy and with the burden of a $10,000 bill for repairs, Reels of Fortune needs to get some serious meat on deck to secure their winning spot. Even though the forecast calls for 30-knot winds later in the day, the captain and crew know there is no turning back― they have to get to the fishing grounds and nail a Bluefin to get out of debt. The odds are in their favor and the crew catches one of the nicest fish to date, coming in at 314 lbs. and bringing in $6,908.
After hooking a number of fish too small to keep and with an empty deck, the crew of Reel Action feels defeated. Jessie Anderson and Dita Young question captain Tami Gray’s abilities, and Tami knows she’s letting them down. As a working mom, she’s sacrificed a lot being away from her two daughters and is determined to fish hard for their sakes. As the newest boat in the fleet, the pressure is on and with bad weather ahead, Reel Action needs to see some real catches they can keep. It seems it’s another bust until the boat gets a bite and reels in a keeper 283 lbs. tuna, bringing in $4,528.
Captain Dave Marciano and first mate Jay Muenzner came down to North Carolina feeling confident after having their best fishing season to date back in Gloucester. But since arriving in the Outer Banks, the Hard Merchandise has yet to catch a single tuna and the boat has been eating into the profits from their Northern season thanks to boat damages and trip after unsuccessful trip. Despite the bad weather forecast, Dave takes a huge risk and stays out on the water overnight. He wants to maximize the boat’s fishing time but a rough wave puts their lives in jeopardy. Luckily, they make it through the night, but suffered even more boat damages with an empty deck.
Keep up with next week’s catches on Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks: Reels of Misfortune, Sunday at 9/8c.