The Icy Mist aground in February. USCG photo
The Icy Mist was a so-called Super 8 boat, one in a rising breed of brawny, high-capacity cod catchers nearly half as wide as their 58-foot length. They look indestructible, like a knot of steel.
But not even a Super 8 boat can survive what the Icy Mist went through.
The vessel wrecked at 4 a.m. Feb. 25 on a remote, boulder-strewn beach on Akutan Island. In hurricane-force winds, a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter crew was able to hoist all four crewmen to safety.
A July 30 report from pollution regulators with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation says the Icy Mist "grounded due to operator error in rough seas."
Any thought of salvaging the boat to fish another day have now faded away, the report says.
It's been disemboweled on the rugged beach.
"As the seas continually worked the vessel against the rocks, the hull incurred structural damage and the fish holds became open to the seas, releasing the 135,000 pounds of Pacific cod onboard the vessel to the surrounding waters," the DEC report says.
The report continues: "The bottom of the engine room is now gone, as is the engine and marine gear. In their place are two rocks, the larger being approximately 8 feet by 6 feet, the other substantially smaller."
The DEC says state officials and the boat's owner, Robert Gunderson of Kodiak, are working with Magone Marine Services on a plan to remove the wreck for scuttling at sea.
The demise of the Icy Mist is too bad because it was only in late 2007 that she went into the Hansen Boat Co. yard in Everett, Wash., for sponsoning to her stout dimensions of 58 feet long, 28 feet 6 inches wide (previously the boat's beam was 22 feet). A bulbous bow also was added, according to this National Fisherman article.
The boat was capable of fishing with pots or trawl gear.
But now she's done.