Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!!

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Capt. Monte 'mouse'

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Hello. Christmas is just around the corner and my time at home is quickly coming to an end. Five weeks sure goes by quick when all ya do is goof off, but it certainly has been fun. I managed to get a beauty of a tree into the house but it wasn't the one I would have liked. This tree came from my front yard and is a Blue Spruce that I planted about 14 years ago. A heavy snowfall last
week snapped it in half and now the top 12 feet is in the front room. What a prickly sucker!

Capt. Monte

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Upon my arrival in Florida, the week was nonstop! staying at the Hard Rock Hotel Casino we were booked in a spacious suite. the Hard Rock would be considered base camp, and the location of several events. Thursday, being the first day, was spent meeting all kinds of new friends. Including but not limited to.. Charlie and Hazel Daniels, Mike Alstott, a former fullback with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Jerry Wunsch an offensive lineman, who also played for the Buccaneers but finished his career as a Sea hawk, Guy Gilchrist an internationally known artist, who would most commonly be known for his comic strips "Nancy" the "Muppet's" and even drew the "Peanuts" for a period of time. All were present at the golf paring party that night and there were some slow moving people come Friday morning including myself.

The weather was not what we had expected and Friday, the day of the golf tournament, was the worst yet, pouring rain by 2:00 p.m. The round was unfortunately cut short but we made up for it in the clubhouse. My team, with Joe, Craig, and Jason didn't play well, but had a great time none the less as these three are quite comical and were just flat fun to be with.

Saturday morning started with a CBS morning show in Tampa, rising at 5 a.m. was a drag but well worth it as the broadcasters were very pleasant and made me feel relaxed and welcome, the interview was only about 5 minutes long, but it seemed to go well. They claimed it would air nationally. Upon returning to the hotel, it was clearly going to be a busy day, with several events scheduled. with me and my brother signing autographs from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. The concert had a long list of bands which played from noon till 6 p.m. with The Charlie Daniels Band preforming last, and with another dinner party this turned into one heck of a long day!

With yet another early start, Sunday it appeared, was primed to be a whirlwind. first it was off to The Angelus for Sunday service with Charlie and Hazel, Guy Gilchrist, Tammy the event organizer my brother,Florance and of course Catherine. The trip to the Angelus was the main reason for the entire trip, and I was honored to be invited, the residents are all wheelchair bound and seemed thrilled to meet me. With Charlie playing Christmas carols,it was no doubt one of those days you just don't forget..

All good things must come to an end and we were off. I caught a hour nap ridin' shotgun back to Tampa (we weren't in the Limo and yes my bro was out to..) Our next destination was the Sarasota yacht club, the 50 foot Budweiser yacht was running and ready. The trip across the bay to the Old Salty Dog was brief, Phil the owner of the Dog was along for the ride as was Tom and Karen. Having met these people in the past it was good to see them again.

There was no shortage of fans at the dog and after a couple hours of signing and taking pictures everyone seemed happy. This was the final event of the trip and bout' now we were all pretty much spent. I made to many new friends to count and it was good to see old ones again including a familiar group of the Wizette's, Heather,Velvet, Kim and Debbie. We flew out the next day and were greeted by a foot of snow in Reno, this is uncommon and there was twice that much in Tahoe but it sure was nice to be home.. Capt. Monte "mouse"

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

New friends from far away...

Our offload of the Bairdi went smoothly and all that was left to do before flying out was rig the pots (yet again) for the winter fishery, Opilio. The three or four days in Dutch Harbor were mostly uneventful except for our good fortune in meeting two great new friends all the way from Australia!!

Marilyn and Gary flew up to Dutch hoping to meet the captains and crews from the boats of "The Deadliest Catch". Because we were the only crew still in town (the Wizard was the only boat to fish Bairdi) they were somewhat disappointed.

Over the course of the next few days, we took the time to give them a full tour of the boat and during the evenings had a few belts in the hotel bar. We had a wonderful time and became fast friends. I can only hope our paths cross again.

Next on my agenda is a trip to Tampa, Florida to participate in the 19th annual Charlie Daniels Band Celebrity Golf Tournament in support of The Angelus, a home for challenged adults young and old with cerebral palsy.

Capt. Monte "mouse"

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Bairdi that saved Christmas

Heading out the weather was good and we made short work of setting the 80 pots we had on board, covering about 35 miles of ground west and northwest of Amak Island, this would be considered a wide set and we hope to see some crab as the depth range is from 45 fathoms down to a very shallow 28 fathoms.

The gear set northwest of the island was disappointing and the handful that had a respectable score appeared to be on a small patch at best. We were running out of strings to check and the vibe on deck was plunging. This group of guys have had a poor Bairdi trip as often as a good one and this was not what we'd hoped to see.

With only two short strings left, both being set in the shallowest depths, I was beginning to plan where to look next when low and behold the first pot came up solid at around a buck twenty five! The crew was now pumped and the next pot was even better. Working our way west about 8 miles to the last string, the first pot came up loaded as did the next, and the next. A stretch of 200s plus per pot. Wow! what a sight to see.

Over the course of the next week the weather was poor but the fishing was nothing short of spectacular, huge numbers coming over the rail made it easy to forget about a pesky 40 knot wind. With the relentless N.W. winds subsiding as the last pots were stacked aboard, we had beautiful weather for putting on the large load of gear. This trip would have to be considered epic, and as Gary Soper put it before we even left town "The Bairdi that saved Christmas", and it truly was. Capt. Monte 'mouse'