For the second consecutive season, the Discovery website is holding a weekly livechat or phone interview with featured fishermen from the show. In the past, they’ve interviews most of the skippers and some of the deckhands. This year, the first interviewee is Monte Colburn of the F/V Wizard who is part time deckboss and part time skipper. Below is the first of a four-page interview so you’ll have to make the jump to read the rest. It’ll be worth it though, as we’re going to see alot of the F/V Wizard and it’s crew this season!
Discovery: Welcome to our weekly Deadliest Catch chat series. Tonight’s guest is Monte Colburn, deckhand and relief captain of the Wizard. Prepare to see a lot more of Monte this season! Ask the Deadliest Catch veteran about his Season 4 experience and life on the Bering Sea.Monte Colburn: Good evening! I’m glad to address your questions and hopefully you’ll walk away with some sort of answers to those questions. I’ll do my best!
Wizette Mystic: Capt. Monte my heart stopped beating when I saw that rogue wave hit. Was anyone hurt? What kind of repairs did the Wizard require? Thank you!
Monte Colburn: We sustained some damage that night. We had a leak in the house which pertained to the rogue wave that came over the nose that was well publicized. No, nobody was hurt. We were traveling, so the entire crew was in the house.
fellowhawk: I know when I’m on the lake, I worry about engine failure. You guys are in the middle of the Bering Sea! What do you do in extremely rough seas when you have a non-repairable engine failure?
Monte Colburn: Most of the boats, ours included, have several engines that supply electricity and the support systems onboard. If there were engine failure in one capacity you would switch to another engine. If it was the main engine, the propulsion engine, that would be a serious problem for us due to the fact we are a single propeller-driven vessel.
Lhiiiz: Hi Monte! Love the Wizard and all of you guys! I was wondering, are there any superstitions you hold to?
Monte Colburn: The list of superstitions is vast, and some of us are more superstitious than others, my brother being at the top of that list. They say superstitions are an excuse for sailors to be terrified. However minor, we usually hold true to the majority of the superstitions that we have.
webdoc: Captain Monte, just how close did you come to redesigning Guy’s face?
Monte Colburn: Well, Guy pushed the threshold to probably the upper end of the envelope. But being a professional mariner and trying to complete the fishing trip we were in the middle of, I had to restrain myself from throwing him down the stairs. The whole crew was capable of operating without him being missed. He was hired as a crewman, but he did not do the job he was hired to do, which was very disappointing to all of us.
primorska: Hello Monte. Great episode! Do the skippers and crews of all the crab boats featured get along well off the show? It seems like the captains all like each other.
Monte Colburn: There’s always been a huge competitive nature among the boats, whether in the show or not. The fleet is downsized from what it used to be, but it is extremely competitive to this day. Most of the captains get along reasonably well, at least as well as they ever did.
Jim: What is the deepest you can drop a crab pot?
Monte Colburn: That’s a good question. We fish single pots, which have a set of buoys and a line that goes to the bottom of the ocean and every pot. We personally have fished 1500 to 1800 feet deep with a single pot. On average, in the fisheries we’re in now, we fish anywhere from 400 to 600-700 feet
deep.whitelion43: What is your most unusual quirk?
Monte Colburn: My most unusual quirk is taking an unreasonable amount of time to go out on deck. I need all my gloves and raingear just right to get outside. I have done that the past ten years; I need to be comfortable at my age.
Jim: Is there a limit to the amount of pots in a string? Do you always drop them in a straight line?
Monte Colburn: Generally speaking, the gear is set in a straight line. There are times you’re fishing on the contours of the sea floor to where you might set a string that might have an angle or dog leg or turn to it.
fastboats03: Hey Monte, just wondering…as the season starts, the weather looks mild in port. Is it?
Monte Colburn: Usually, it’s hard to say what the weather is going to do. When we’re in port, we might not start fishing for 300-400-500 miles from port. So, of course, we have to watch the weather closely and know what to expect 500 miles away versus what you’re going to get in port.
clammer: My name is Matt and I live in Massachusetts. I work part time on a clam boat and am trying to get a job on a scallop boat near me. The old crab season used to be short…how long does the crab season run now?
Monte Colburn: The current fisheries that we’re in are, thankfully, becoming longer due to the increase in quota. Generally, we are busy about 6 months out of the year.