Author Topic: Catalina Charter Review  (Read 57 times)

Offline naturalSelection

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Catalina Charter Review
« on: July 15, 2021, 11:29:57 AM »
I went on a 3-day, 3-night Catalina Island spearfishing charter guided by Al Schneppershoff Jr this June. I was very unsatisfied with my experience. The cost was 5 figures for my portion. Here are the issues I had with Al’s charter:

•   Clients are expected to pull and drop anchor by hand the entire trip. The 30’ boat does not have a winch. There was even a diver 60+ years of age doing this deckhand work. Guide and
        Captain would not do this work. This is unacceptable for a professional, high-cost charter.

•   Al talked to me disrespectfully and unprofessionally on multiple occasions during the trip:
   o   He called me “anchor boy”, and did stop when I made it clear I did not like that.
   o   He asked all the clients what race their girlfriend/wife was.
   o   He told me I need to take spearfishing lessons because I had not shot any fish by the 3rd day. Keep in mind that 3 other divers also went home empty handed.

•   Did not actively pursue fish. We continually went to the same locations which had yielded no fish on previous days. Zero attempt was made to try more productive locations.

•   Charter was unlicensed. We were asked to “pretend we were all just friends” because the boat was not authorized to run charters.

•    2 pieces of gear were badly damaged/destroyed:
   o   My float line got wrapped up in the propeller, after I had asked the captain if it was safe to deploy my float. I spent 30 minutes diving under the boat, trying to unwrap it until I was forced
        cut it free, destroying the line. Captain did replace the line, but not the integrated bungee.
   o   The butt of my custom wooden speargun was split while bouncing around haphazardly on deck. The boat did not have a gun rack, bungee system or a bin to safely store guns. Safe gun
        storage is a basic necessity for a professional spearfishing boat.

•   Price was changed upon arrival at the harbor, and I ended up overpaying by $168.

I would not recommend this charter to anybody. It was unprofessional, and certainly was not worth the high price.


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