Boat of the Month January 2019: Wild Irish Rose

For year-round Maine lobsterman Steve Train, aside from a few part-time jobs during high school and college, fishing is all he has known for 42 years.

Wild Irish Rose is the fourth boat Train has owned —he calls it “my second home.”

Naming it was easy. “Both of my daughters have Rose in their names,” he says. “Our heritage is primarily Irish, and the Wild part just seemed to fit.”

The boat is moored near Train’s house on Long Island, in Casco Bay. Come winter, he keeps it in Portland, an ideal winter port compared to other areas in Casco Bay that are more exposed to northwest winds or ice.

For six years, Train has hauled lobster on Wild Irish Rose, which he bought nearby from a previous owner who had used it as a shrimper.

“It had been sitting in the yard for several years after an engine room fire — she needed a lot of rebuilding, new electronics and power,” he adds.

The 46-foot Jarvis Newman was originally finished by Mac Pettegrow and then refinished by Steve Johnson (Johnson’s boatyard) on Long Island.

“Because of the after-fire condition,” adds Train, “we updated or replaced all of the electronics, hydraulics, and both the main engine and the generator — along with all new equipment in the galley.”

He added hatches over the outboard lobster tanks, setting them up to float crated lobsters below deck.

For Train, Loran numbers are critical. “I convert my GPS back to TDs. If they ever stop making GPS’s that do that, I’m going to be lost,” he adds. “I’ve also gotten very attached to the autopilot.”

Future repairs include: replacing fuel tanks and possibly lengthening the outboard tanks but “of course, that means a new deck.” Scalloping is in the plans, too.

Like all boats, Wild Irish Rose has its quirks.

“My hauler is on the davit, and the trap practically lands itself like this — except when the rope jams it against the hulk because of the angle. It drove me crazy at first, but I’ve gotten used to it and avoid it now.”

The full galley, head and shower come in handy when he needs to stay aboard, “or rush to a meeting after hauling.”

Train uses social media, to a point. “I’m not that social media savvy, really. I don’t have facespace or insta-whatchamacallit, but I do have Twitter,” he says. “I’ve got over 600 followers — lots are fishermen, but most aren’t.”

Followers around the country see his posts, which are a window into Maine’s lobster fishery.

“I frequently tweet sunrise pics, snow-covered lighthouses… or whales breaching, sunfish warming, or wildlife,” he says. “I hope I can make people think about lobster. Maybe I’m trying to promote it. I love my office, and I guess I’m just showing it off.”

Home port: Long Island, Maine

Owner:  Steve Train

Builder: Jarvis Newman

Year built: 1986

Fisheries: Lobster

Hull material: Fiberglass

Length: 46 feet

Beam: 15 feet

Draft: 6 feet

Crew capacity: 2-3

Main propulsion: Detroit 871

Gearbox: 2.5:1 Allison gear

Propeller: 32” x 32” wheel on 2 1/2” shaft

Speed: 16 knots if you need it, usually 10 knots

Fuel consumption: 30 gallons a day inshore in summer, 60-75 offshore the rest of year

Fuel capacity: 550 gallons

Tonnage: 34 gross tons, 27 net tons

Hold capacity: Floating 1,100 pounds below deck in crates; more loose

Electronics: High- and low-frequency Koden sounder, Furuno radar and GPS, computer chart plotter, 3-D bathymetric charts and autopilot

About the author


Caroline Losneck is an independent radio producer, filmmaker and documentarian living in Portland, Maine.

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