WHAT IS IT? (from previous page)
Cats, dogs, monkeys, and birds have been cherished on board
ships for as long as people have made sea voyages. These seafaring pets are celebrated in a vintage exhibit of photographs taken
by acclaimed maritime photographer Sam Hood. You may not
make it Down Under to the Australian National Maritime
Museum, but visit collections.anmm.gov.au to see a sampling
of the photos. Search “pets.”
BOATU.S. REPORTS Uber on the water?
By now, it’s likely that you have the Uber
ridesharing service app installed on your
smartphone. This simple and sometimes
cheaper form of taxi service allows regular people in personal vehicles to act as
cabs, providing an estimated 3 million
rides a day.
Uber has been
with two new
services that may
be coming to a
marina near you:
on a short-term
trial basis in
then in Miami, the
Uber app allowed
those seeking a
quick hitch along
the city’s bustling
waterfront to open the app and, if within
half a mile, set a pickup location and hail
a captain for a water taxi. Now Uber has
launched Uber YACHT in Dubai, which
allows anyone willing to pay the equivalent of $82 an hour, per person, to hail a
vessel on two days’ notice.
UberBOAT is still in Beta testing, so
boat owners can’t sign up to be a captain. If this becomes reality, however,
there are some important things to consider: “The BoatU.S. Marine insurance
recreational policy does not cover this
type of usage. However, a charter policy
may be available prior to participating in this type of program,” says Mike
Pellerin, vice president of underwriting
for BoatU.S. Marine Insurance.
If Uber ever actually launches
UberBOAT, potential skippers should
review their insurance policies and determine if they need to obtain both commercial insurance and the proper licensing
(U.S. Coast Guard Captain’s License) to
protect their interests. U.S. Coast Guard
regulations on person/weight capacity
will also apply. In addition, using your
boat for commercial activities may void
any warranties that you may have on
your boat, equipment, and motors.
— TROY GILBERT
A whopper of a fish tale
Anglers are always on the hunt for a bigger fish. Joshua Gay, of Henderson, Tennessee, recently got more than he bargained for while night fishing on Old Hickory Lake, just northeast of Nashville. The 22,000-acre lake on the Cumberland River is known for its fishing;
both a state and two national records were landed there. Gay, 34, his girlfriend, and a
buddy were chasing catfish using cut shad as bait. Gay had caught several 50-pounders
there at one point, but what he hooked that night was much, much larger.
“We had five other lines out, and the fish turned the boat around and got those lines
all wrapped around
each other,” he says.
He cut the other
lines and, rather
than risk losing
the fish by trying
to pull up anchor,
let it go; he has a
buoy attached to
his anchor line so
he can release the
anchor and retrieve
it later. The fish
pulled his 16-foot
around the lake
while he followed
with his tiller motor, methodically working the fish to the surface.
After 40 minutes, the monster surfaced and was too big for
his net, so Gay put on gloves, grabbed its jaw, and muscled the
fish onto the boat himself.
“I leaned straight back, fell on the back of the boat, and she landed on top of me,”
he says. “Face to face, seeing how big she was, it was an amazing moment.”
The 50-pound scale he had on board broke under the fish, which was too big for his
livewell, so he put the well hose in the fish’s mouth and his girlfriend poured water over
the fish on deck while they headed to shore. He used a big-game scale local hunters
use to weigh deer to get an accurate weight for the catfish – a whopping 92 pounds.
It’s not an official scale, so sadly there will be no official record.
Determined to keep the fish alive, he gave her a kiss, then got knee-deep in the
water with her and kept her moving until she started biting on his hand and thrashing
before swimming away. And that’s how that fish tale ends. — R.A.
Joshua Gay shows
off the massive
catfish he boated.