Seven Hours of Hell: at the oars in Salem Sound

Six miles offshore in Salem Sound, Mike the lobsterman's motor quits. The seas and wind build. Mike puts to the oars. His boat weathercocks heavily, the bilge pump working overtime.

Weathercocking places a boat's bow head-to the wind - a benefit for seaworthiness, a bane if trying to head home in a stern-quartering wind.

Mike calls his dad via cell phone and refuses to call the Coast Guard.

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On the fly engineering: cold storage for lobsters: a bait freezer, bathtub, vodka and pump

Mike the lobsterman on the on-the-fly engineering a cold holding tank for his lobster catch. You need:

An old bathtub.

Plastic tubing.

Duct tape and spray foam.

A bait freezer.

Connect the insulated tub and the freezer with tubing, run antifreeze - no, vodka - through the line with a pump, and you're done. Mike's subtext of SHTF preparedness (generate your own electricity) happens to be green. He runs the rig off solar power he collects at his dock in Salem, Ma.

Lobsterman Mike on a bad day at sea and the world’s best bilge pumps

Lobsterman Mike reminisces on a day seven miles off Gloucester in bad weather and gives an endorsement of Rule bilge pumps, manufactured in Gloucester and ubiquitous on the commercial waterfront.

A 14' Novi hull, by the way, is a fast and able seaworthy little motorboat boat with a high bow and swooping sheer line. It's a good boat for 10-pot recreational lobstermen.


First week of lobstering season: Mike the truck driver

Lobsterman Mike ruminates on how to deal with boaters who steal from his lobster traps. He fills us in on the solar panels he installed at the dock to power his lobster holding tanks.

Finally, the value boat ownership has brought to the relationship he has with his father.

Mike the Lobsterman’s Baked Stuffed Lobster Recipe: Not for the Faint of Heart

Mike the lobsterman shares his father's recipe for baked stuffed lobster. You need a sharp knife.

Delivered with Mike's inimitable sense of style. Not for the faint of heart. Nor for those who support PETA.

If Mike inspires you, buy from Amazon the classic and well-reviewed The Secret Life of Lobsters.