‘Deadliest Catch’: Here’s Why Scott Campbell Jr. Took a Leave of Absence From the Show

by Amy Myers

It’s no secret that life on the water can take a toll on a fisherman’s body. With heavy traps, rough waters, freezing temperatures and occasional equipment malfunctions, it’s no wonder the show is called Deadliest Catch. For these crews, their time on the Bering Sea is, quite literally, do or die. Depending on the season, the men and women on the vessels could be growing their bank accounts or tightening their belts. So, each day they’re on the water, they have to give their best effort – no matter the cost. For Deadliest Catch star Scott Campbell Jr., this meant suffering extreme pain in his back for as long as he could.

Campbell first appeared on Deadliest Catch in season seven with his massive crabbing vessel. Through his motto, “Leave no crab behind,” Campbell has created a successful career for himself on the Bering Sea. However, handling the 700-pound crab pots over the years had left his back a little worse for wear.

Back in 2015, after season 10, the Deadliest Catch star found out that he needed two new discs in his spine. Understandably, Campbell took some time off from the show to recover before returning again in season 16 with a brand new vessel, Lady Alaska.

‘Deadliest Catch’ Star Says He’ll Be Doing ‘Less Fishing’

At the time of his surgery, Campbell posted a photo of himself in a hospital bed. Beside him, his wife, Lisa, lay on the sofa, tucked in among a few pillows and blankets. Clearly, she was ready to stay by his side for as long as it took. He expressed his gratitude for her help during his recovery, sharing “it is great to have a personal nurse.”

Although he wasn’t able to return to the show just yet, that didn’t mean he wouldn’t indulge in other outdoor activities. However, instead of standing on a pier, the Deadliest Catch star said that he would be doing “Less boating, more camping” that summer.

Thankfully, the major surgery didn’t mean the end of Campbell’s crabbing career. When he and his crew returned for King Crab season in 2020, he started on his usual vessel, the Seabrooke. However, the Deadliest Catch star switched to his new pride and joy, Lady Alaska, in time for Opilio Crab season and continues to use her in 2021. Despite the change in boats, Campbell assured fans that he still loves his first vessel.

“Even though I have moved on to the Lady Alaksa the Seabrooke will always have a special spot in my heart,” Campbell wrote in the caption. “Lots of good memories on this girl. Some bad ones too!”