Discovery Channel is taking its Deadliest Catch formula to kayaks, following a salty group of skilled Hawaiian kayak anglers in Pacific Warriors, the popular cable channel’s newest reality show that debuted Oct. 23. Kayak Fish magazine‘s Paul Lebowitz described the show in a recent editorial opinion piece as the “most compelling kayak fishing TV the world has seen,” while noting the flip-side that “Pacific Warriors is also exasperating at times for those who’ve fished offshore, or even fished at all.”

Lebowitz should know, he’s covered the crew for C&K and its sister title Kayak Fish for years, through record catches such as Andy Cho’s 225-pound blue marlin and Isaac Brumaghim’s viral video turn with his pet shark Chompy, to most notably Lebowitz’s two-part feature story shot by C&K Photo Editor Aaron Schmidt.

Whatever you think of the show’s sensationalized editing, the sheer skill on display cannot be disputed. Case in point: this video of native Hawaiian Rob Wong Yuen bringing in a HUGE 95-pound tuna using the traditional (and dangerous) hand-reeling technique. After catching the giant fish, he honors it with a tradition performed with the first catch of every season, eating its heart raw. “He kicked my butt, but I got him,” Rob says after the struggle, which resulted in an $800 prize.

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