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The Captain's Blog

Seasickness: What's the best treatment?

By July 29, 2013No Comments

I had the day off on July 7 and took my brother-in-law Ray Kristofik and a few deckhands fishing. We rounded Cape Georgiana and began our way south. As we travelled against a large and tight swell, I began to feel something unpleasant and familiar from my past. I’d been off the water for 6 days – my mid-season break. June had been nearly dead calm for weeks so I’d seen very little rough water. To add fuel to the fire, I was on very strong antibiotics for a staph infection and my stomach felt badly before we left the dock. By the time we reach Shelikof Bay I reached for a prescription dose of Scopolamine. It was too late. Five more minutes and I was over the rail. Seasickness had set in. I took another pill, took a nap and woke up feeling better.

The moral of the story is nearly anyone can get seasick and if you’re coming fishing for 3 or 4 days – bring medication. Seasickness is a physiological problem, not psychological. You want good prescription medication unless you’re 100% certain that you’re never prone. In my opinion the very best cure is the “Coast Guard Cocktail” – a combination of 25 mg promethazine and 25 mg ephedrine. This is hard to get because of the constraints on ephedrine. Second best is oral scopolamine, the same medication found in “The Patch.” I like the oral form because it seems to be a bit more effective and you don’t have to have the medication in your bloodstream 24/7. The Patch is third on my hit parade for seasickness medication. After that there is a list of over the counter meds that help people who are marginal, but will not help those who are truly prone.

Ebook cover

So, part of planning your trip is loading up with good seasick medication. Trust me, it’s much better to take it and not need it than need it and not take it.

For other recommendations to enhance your trip to Sitka, download our eBook, which is packed with helpful recommendations and facts for a more satisfying Alaskan adventure.


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