Going into its third season, the reality show Wicked Tuna needed something a little different so why not Wicked Tuna: North vs South.
Pitting the boats and captains from Gloucester, MA where the show originated, against the finest captains calling Wanchese home, the 2014 version of the popular National Geographic show kicks off tonight (Sunday) at 10 p.m.
The Atlantic bluefin tuna is huge—up to 1200 pounds and over 8’ long—powerful and one of the most valuable commercial catches around. Sold mostly on the Japanese sushi market they regularly bring $15,000-$20,000, and occasionally more . . . much more.
The competition took place in January of this year—one of the harshest winter months anyone on the Outer Banks can remember, and as the Gloucester fleet soon discovered, just getting through Oregon Inlet to the fishing grounds was its own challenge. Gloucester captains talked about how difficult it was navigating the Inlet, with local captain Greg Mayer of Fishin’ Frenzy remarking, “With their smaller boats, they had a real disadvantage getting through Oregon Inlet.”
But the northern crews did get to the fishing grounds, and even though North Carolina regulations make catching this king of the predator fish more difficult according to reports the competition was fierce and close.