Aborted Intrepid Angler's Choice 6-Day -- Invicta Saves the Day

Chris Penning

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Apr 13, 2011
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Laurel, MD
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Chris
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Total Ho
Last year's 8-day in Sep on the Intrepid was my first LR trip ever. I had such a great time, I knew I was hooked. A few short days after me and my buddy, Bob, got back we were thrilled to hear some of the folks we'd made friends with were already booked on the Angler's Choice trip and asked us to come along. Like many, this is a once a year trip, so anticipation was high as we arrived in San Diego on Friday, 17 July with a Sun push off. Saturday was spent at the docks watching a few boats unload, then we swung by the airport to pick a friend I connected with on BD when he found out we were on the same trip. Being retired from the Navy, I have plenty of friends out in SD and managed to connect with a few; one for lunch then a couple more in the evening and over dinner. I also have a cousin that just moved to Oceanside I hadn't seen in almost 15 years that came down and met me for breakfast Sunday morning. Great catching up, he's turned into a great man.

The Intrepid was back early and it was good to see the cast of characters that we were to spend the next 6 days with. Jesus was going to be the first, plus there was Sam, Chad, Ethan, and Jack on deck, with Perry and Scott, a relatively new addition in the galley. We loaded up, swing by the bait recievers and picked up a great load of bait acccording to Jesus. We cleared the point at 1:00PM headed south. Chad gave the safety/orientation brief and said Jesus would be down later to talk over the game plan. Around 4:30 Jesus came over the loudspeaker and asked everyone to assemble in the saloon, for what we assumed was a talk about said game plan. As we are waiting on him, I feel the boat heel over and we come about 180 degrees, as I wondering out loud why we are turning, speculating that maybe we ran over a huge school of tuna. Well, the first words out of Jesus' mouth quelled that notion --- "There's no way to sugar coat this." Well, shit that doesn't sound good at all. He proceeded to let us know an oil line feeding a gear box had blown and we would have to head back to San Diego. He had no idea how long the repair might take as he just wasn't sure what the issue was. A mechanic would should up at first oppotunty and give us the word. We made it back to SD around 10 that night, and after a pretty admirable manuvering job on one shaft, Jesus tied us up to the pier to await our fate. The mechanic showed around 7:30 and sealed the deal. Several days were needed to repair the issue and the trip was scraped. FUCK!

So here comes a lesson in relationship building. Remember those folks we met the year before? Well, one of them has been doing this for years and starts scrambling. He and his party numbered about 12 with many first time long rangers. Feeling a bit responsible to find a solution, he concocts a plan to salvage the trip with a 3.5/4 day on the Invicta, and he says he wants us to join them. In fact, an old deck hand/Captain from the Intrepid was running the boat -- Nicky. I was a bit bummed to hear he'd moved on when we boarded the Intrepid, but it looked like I would get the chance to fish with him again afterall. Richie would be the second, and I was trilled when I saw him as I fished with him on the Polaris Supreme when they put together two 3-days when a 6-day canceled on them in 2009, and Tommy R. let Richie take the boat out for the first time by himself. Perry and Scott were also nice enough to come along and cook for us. Hats off to the owner of the Interpid for allowing them to do that along with filling the Invicta's bait tanks with what the Intrepid had loaded up on Sun.

We spent the next few days chasing tuna and managed a nice catch north of San Dog catching a mix of YFT and BFT, probably about 10 of the latter. We also had a 10/11ft hammerhead that chased a few of our hanging fish around for about an hour. All within eyeshot of the coast. We had breezers most of Wed morning and it felt great to be on the water, pulling on fish. I can't say enough about Nick, Richie, Ethan (used to work on the Invicta and joined us from the Interpid), Joe, and pinhead Kegan.

A huge debt of gratitude goes out to the fellow we met last year that put the trip on the Invicta together and footed the ENTIRE bill. I will never forget his generosity and giving nature for inviting me and my buddy to come along and treat us like family. He salvaged my vacation, plain and simple. I'll snag a few photos and put them up in a bit.

Regards,
Chris
 
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hilltop

lurking in the shallows
Jan 1, 2010
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hilltop
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sold, pangas, Intrepid, and diggin the RRIII
jeez, I was wondering what up as no reports were done over the last week, sorry to hear you guys got worked; but glad you salvaged a trip with Nick, that guy is the coolest ever. I wonder if the Norcal tuna club made it out on time yesterday? Next trip is the one i'm on, hopefully they got it dialed in!
 

Chris Penning

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Apr 13, 2011
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Laurel, MD
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Chris
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Total Ho
Word was it might not get out until today, but looked promising for a go. Best of luck to you on your trip. Yeah, Nick is a good guy and did an outstanding job putting us on fish. He runs a good boat!
 
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Chris Penning

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Apr 13, 2011
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Chris
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That is an amazing story! Can we get a committee together and draft that guy for a run for President? I don't care which party he favors, that's a man who knows how to be a leader in a crisis!
I'm beyond thankful, you have no idea!

Chris
 
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hilltop

lurking in the shallows
Jan 1, 2010
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hilltop
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sold, pangas, Intrepid, and diggin the RRIII
Word was it might not get out until today, but looked promising for a go. Best of luck to you on your trip. Yeah, Nick is a good guy and did an outstanding job putting us on fish. He runs a good boat!
yep heard conflicting reports but hope that NorcalTuna club gets a trip in and back sunday a day later than scheduled, which is my departure day. Turn and burn if all goes well! fingers crossed !!!!
 
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rodblder

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Feb 19, 2004
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Glad to hear you guys had fun with Nick who I really miss on the Intrepid. Bummer we didn't get to go but shit happens, at least the owner made it right for everybody. Gary is the real deal, not surprising he managed to put the Invicta trip together. I hear they are all coming back to the Intrepid next summer as am i. How about you, will you be back?
PS-I had to email Luc and tell him that his raffle and giveaways were the best i've ever had on an overnite trip!!!!:D I'm on 2 more 8 day intrepid trips, next month and Luc's in sept. I understand the 2 couples on the trip have jumped on Luc's 8 day for the same price which is a great deal!!!!!
 
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Chris Penning

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Apr 13, 2011
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Good to hear from you, Jim. Wish we'd have had time to share at the rail, but yes, shit happens. I'm more than impressed with how Ken Price handled the situation. I don't think we're going to rebook the Angler's Choice in July. Bob and I were talking about that, and it's right in the middle of our fishing season over here. We'll probably end up on early fall trip. Yes, Gary was a life saver, that's for sure.

Hopefully, you and my paths' will cross again, and we can swap stories at the rail. And yes, Luc's give aways are the best! Was totally impressed he gave everything away, and let us take some of the gear he brought along to use on the trip over to the Invicta to use there. All in all, I feel blessed to have gotten the chance to get out.

Regards,
Chris
 

vegasandre

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Aug 20, 2010
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wow. great save . that is awesome he footed the entire bill for the save trip on the Invicta. glad you were able to enjoy your vacation and get time back on the water.
 

AKSalmon

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What a bummer! I assume the Intrepid refunded your money, right? But I doubt they'd cover the airplane and hotel fees for people who flew in from out of town...
 

rodblder

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I live 5 miles from the landing, my wife came down and picked me up, she was bummed, thought she had a week of peace without me, they didn't even offer to pay for her gasoline.........;)
 
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Otis2527

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Feb 23, 2014
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The Intrepid is still at the dock as of this evening. The crew told us they are still working on the mechanical issue. Real bummer.
 
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Phil

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Great report Chris. Glad to hear you guys on the trip were able to take everything in stride. Sounds like the Intrepid continues to live up to the top notch reputation we hear about here on BD. Letting the galley crew join you guys on the Invicta and passing the bait over was a great thing.

Amazing your long range buddy was able to put together an alternate plan so quickly and cover the cost - that guy is absolutely special. There's something about most guys and gals that make the long range trips (and the crews of course) - that keeps me coming back.
 
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bluewaterbum

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Jul 16, 2012
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if the boats still at the dock it sounds like more then a line problem. I remember last year when the boat had the same engine go bad on two separate trips. That was one costly year for the intrepid.

Hate, when this happens especially for people who fly in or drive long distance to take one of these trips.
 
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COSDoug

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if the boats still at the dock it sounds like more then a line problem. I remember last year when the boat had the same engine go bad on two separate trips. That was one costly year for the intrepid.

Hate, when this happens especially for people who fly in or drive long distance to take one of these trips.
I flew in from Colorado Springs for the trip. Sure, everyone on board was real disappointed, but stuff happens. The Intrepid staff was quite fair. I'll be back. The prime rib by Perry was very nice.
 

Chris Penning

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Apr 13, 2011
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What a bummer! I assume the Intrepid refunded your money, right? But I doubt they'd cover the airplane and hotel fees for people who flew in from out of town...
Yes, we were given some options. We could book on the Angler's Choice 8-day in Sep for the price of our 6-day. Or we could apply the money to any other trip we wanted or take a refund. We ate the airfare and hotels, but as others have said, shit happens.


Chris
 
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Chris Penning

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The Intrepid is still at the dock as of this evening. The crew told us they are still working on the mechanical issue. Real bummer.
That's a shame to hear. I assume that means the other trip has been canceled as well. Sure they are as bummed as we were.

Great attitude. I would have been extremely disappointed, but what can you do. Better to be safe at port then drifting at sea.
Disappointed was aptly applied. But, I try to keep things in perspective. I consider myself more than fortunate to even have the opportunity to do a trip like this. I have a great life and in the whole grand scheme of things, this is small beans.

Chris
 

Brad I

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Sounds like a real bummer, but that everyone stepped up with attitude, effort and $, which is about as good as could happen in that situation.
 
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Lake

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Yes, we were given some options. We could book on the Angler's Choice 8-day in Sep for the price of our 6-day. Or we could apply the money to any other trip we wanted or take a refund. We ate the airfare and hotels, but as others have said, shit happens.


Chris
Sounds like they were very fair. I wouldn't expect them to refund plane fare or hotels. Poor Ken Price seems to be snakebit this past year. I hope the boat can stay online for the rest of the year.
 
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Michael H.

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Wow, this sounds like a great group to fish with. It seems everyone maintained a positive attitude and no whiners. glad to see there was at least some fishing to be had out of this situation.
 
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COSDoug

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It may have begun as a ruptured line but turned into significant internal damage, necessitating the removal of the transmission. Not a quick fix.
Steve at the Intrepid office is a man of his word. Today in the mail I received a check for a refund in full for the trip price PLUS the $200 for the rebook of my return flight to Colorado Springs. Team Intrepid is a great operation to work with. I feel I've been treated quite fairly. No complaints. The whole group did have a great attitude in the face of adversity. Luc of Angler's Choice is an outstanding CM.
You know how people say the captain always wants to catch fish more than anybody on the boat?
It's true. And in the same vain, there was nobody, nobody more bummed out than "Zeus", our captain. He is as fine a person as you could ever be so lucky to meet and I can't wait to fish with him again.
Stuff happens, it just happened to us.