COLD FISH: Ice storm a first for Destin fishing fleet

Tina Harbuck
Log Photographer Kathy Harrison couldn't make it any closer because the boardwalks was entirely iced over.

Dealing with ice is not unusual for boat captains — however, the ice is usually in the box, not on the deck.

"I've never seen an ice storm like that," said Capt. Eric Thrasher of the charter boat Game On. "There was about an inch of ice on the docks all the way down," he said after Tuesday night's ice storm.

Just trying to drive down Wednesday to check on his boat at Fishing Fleet Marina, "I slid halfway down the hill," Thrasher said.

Once he made it down the docks and to his slip, Thrasher said, "You had to be very careful getting on. I had to get a towel and lay it over the rail, just to get on it. It was mighty slippery. There was an inch of ice on the deck, on the curtain on the bridge and the side of the boat."

Of course the Game On wasn't the only game in town with an ice issue.

Capt. Steve Haeusler of the First Light said "it was solid ice … you could hurt yourself just trying to get on your boat."

Haeusler said there was ice all down the docks.

"I've seen it cold, but not with all the rain. I've never seen it ice like that," Haeusler said.

But the slippery stuff was a common sight up and down the docks.

Frances Montalvo, a reservationist at HarborWalk Marina, said "everything was closed up Wednesday."

"Outside the booth, (along the boardwalk) it was full of ice," she said. "The guys weren't even trying to get on their boats."

However, after lunch Thursday things were starting to thaw along the harbor.

"People are starting to come out of the woodwork," Montalvo said.

"It looks like the docks are coming back to life," said Renee Wagner of Fishing Fleet Marina on Thursday. "There are actually some people strolling around this afternoon.”

As a matter of fact, the party boat Destiny which docks at Fishing Fleet had a trip scheduled for Friday.

Now that it’s warmer I’ll see you at the docks!