‘Deadliest Catch’ Captain Wild Bill Updates Fans After Major Hip Surgery

After decades battling the perilous waves of the Bering Sea, Deadliest Catch Captain Wild Bill Wichrowski found himself going under the knife for hip surgery in Feb. 2018. Today, the Summer Bay captain is fully recovered and ready to tackle another dangerous season at sea.

Ahead of the 15th season of the Discovery Channel docuseries (premiering Tuesday, April 9 at 9 p.m. ET), PopCulture.com's Anna Rumer visited Dutch Harbor, Alaska, trying her hand at greenhorning on the Summer Bay and getting an update from Wichrowski post-surgery.

Wichrowski was out of the hospital just three hours after waking up from the hip resurfacing, but confessed he didn't quite follow the doctor's orders when it came to recovering from surgery.

"I misunderstood the doctor — probably a little inebriated — but I thought he said the more you do, the quicker it will heal," Wild Bill told PopCulture. "So the next day, I got on crutches, I went out to my truck and went and had dinner with friends."

Carrying on like that for a couple days, he was shocked when he suddenly wasn't able to move around anymore.

"I got to the doctor and I said, 'Hey, what's up? Can't move,'" he recalled. "He was like, 'You've been doing your stretching?' I said, 'Yeah, I went to dinner, went to lunch.' He's like, 'No, no, no! If you would fall, you'd be laid up for years.'"

Sufficiently convinced to actually take it easy for about three weeks, the veteran captain called recovery "a battle," but that he felt like a whole new man without the constant pain in his hip.

"I lost a little bit of mobility, but no more pain," he said of his new normal, which is pretty good being that his surgeon called the condition of his joint one of the worst he had seen in 28 years performing the procedure.

"He said it was just kind of rattling around in there, and there was nothing left," he told PopCulture. "So basically, the operation was a success. I feel 100 percent better."

A more mobile Captain Wild Bill opened up plenty of opportunities for the Summer Bay this year, he added with a bit of mischief.

"I'm a lot more active, and it's gonna be fun 'cause I'll probably spend a little more time on deck this year — be out with the guys and maybe let [deck boss Nick McGlashan] drive and put a little time at the helm," he said.


For all of Wild Bill's new adventures, tune into the Deadliest Catch Season 15 premiere Tuesday, April 9 at 9 p.m. ET on Discovery.

Photo credit: Discovery