"Deadliest Catch" is now in opilio season, probably the worst of the crab fishing where ice builds up on the decks and equipment, plus the sea freezes making navigation harder and finding gear even worse as the ice cap proceeds south to further hamper fishing.
This episode opens with Edgar Hansen in a lot of pain, he left during king crab season last year and then returned for opilios. Will he still be around next king season? Sig is watching the weather and instrument panel and sees that there is trouble ahead.
On the Wizard, Keith's crab count is waning and decides to head towards the ice. Keith calls a team meeting to give a heads-up to Lynn, the most junior of the regular deckhands, that he has to step up to the rail because Lenny and Monty are hurt. Lynn's first shot is a miss throwing the hook, but the second is a winnerÂ—but consistency is not his forte.
On the Kodiak, they are looking for a big season as they had for kings. As the first pot comes up, the anticipation dies with only one crab and not much better on the next few. Jason Rainwater is operating the hydros and not doing a great job of it and causing dissention among the crew. Wild Bill has had enough and tells the crew to act professionally, then shuts down fishing and calls a meeting. He tells them that and makes them sign a warning that if they do not stop bickering, they are fired.
The Time Bandit is on the crab, but because of the coiler incident, they are coiling by hand all day and night. Thank goodness for good pots or morale would be at the bottom of the Bering Sea. Captain Johnathan decides to join the guys on deck. Andy lets fans know that Johnathan has had health problems during the off-season and needs to do cardio, but he aggravates an old back injury.
On the Wizard, greenhorn Roger Schlosstein is impressing the entire crew, especially Keith. Lynn is a disappointment though, missing so many throws with the hook and Keith takes him off the rail and demotes him to tying the stack.
The Northwestern is fishing on crowded grounds to avoid the oncoming ice pack and gets good pots averaging almost 700 keepers. Edgar is aching throughout his body. For Edgar, the pain is worth the gain of the awesome numbers coming over the rail. After the tanks are stuffed, Edgar gets to drive the boat and Jake Anderson gets his former job back of deck boss during Edgar's absence.
On the Ramblin' Rose, Elliott is missing his kids, and continues to call home with no luck. As the first string comes to the rail, it is a disappointment with no change in sight. So stack and go to another area. Elliott's luck is running out.
On the Wizard, Lynn is off the stack because after five years, he is still not a full-share deckhand and now putting his crew at risk. Lenny goes to retrieve a pot from the unsteady stack and nearly gets hurt again as the stack wobbles to and fro. Meanwhile, Keith calls Roger to the wheelhouse to compliment him on his hustling and gives him a half of a percent raise.
On the Northwestern, Edgar finally asks to drive the boat and Sig is elated. He has waited for Edgar to want the reins for a while. Sig does not plan on leaving, but Edgar and him will be able to take it easier sharing the helm. Maybe they will take turns like the Hillstrand brothers do on the Time Bandit although it will seem strange seeing a different Hansen in the captain's chair of the Northwestern on the "Deadliest Catch."
Photo of Wizard and Northwestern: Wikimedia