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Crabbing and Clam digging in the PNW? UPDATE! SUCCESSS!!!!

Discussion in 'Hobbies' started by silkiechicken, Apr 12, 2009.

  1. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member


    So to get away from this school/work thing, I was thinking about crabbing and clam digging. Never thought of it before, but heard that Newport OR was a good place to do these things so have decided I should get my shellfish license and try it out.

    What I am uncertain of now is if it is worth it to buy one of those "expensive" crab pots, or just go with a few cheapie recreational use crap traps since it won't be a weekly thing and I'm on a student budget. Got plenty of time to decide... since well... I hear the best part of the season is over.

    But the season for razor clams is back to safe non toxic eating levels... so maybe try that? I have a shovel. lol

    Any tips, advice, and experience with PNW crabbing or claming welcome!

  2. Scrambled Egg

    Scrambled Egg Flock Mistress

    Aug 29, 2007
    Fayetteville, NC
    I've caught hundreds and hundreds of crabs over the years in the cheapy ones with a chicken neck tied inside it....fresh crabs, garlic butter, ice cold beer and loads of friends....an awesome treat!! Good luck!
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2009
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Thanks! That gives me some hope that I might catch something. :p

    If all else fails, in addition to the saw, jacks, grow lights, oil, drill and 2x4 (that my landlord saw me buying) sitting in the apartment living room, I now have a shovel next to the fireplace to go clam digging!

    I have no idea why I didn't think of doing these things when I was home and 10 minutes from the Puget sound, vs here an hour from the ocean!
  4. hennypenny9

    hennypenny9 Songster

    My dad and I used to go to West Port all the time and go crabbing. He had one of the expensive ones, and a cheap one. Both bought used at the swap-meet. Anyway, they both came up with about the same number/size of crabs. So either way would be fun. Love crabbing. Anyone else here cut them in half so that the guts get boiled out, and you can eat the meat in the body? We do.

  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    My mom usually just boils them whole with ginger in the water and we eat the legs and the meat inside along with some of the "yucky" stuff. But I think eating the "yucky" stuff and the insides might be cultural.

    I'm looking forwared to this crab thing... and to potential crab digging if weather and work permit!
  6. CoyoteMagic

    CoyoteMagic RIP ?-2014

    DANG! You have to get a shellfish license??!! Never hear of such a thing.

    Small triangle traps are good. Chicken neck or bait fish especially after it's been setting in the sun for a few days and really gotten rank!![​IMG] or even just a string with a chicken neck and a good net. Pull traps up fast to snap them shut, pull strings up slow so crabs don't jump off.

    Have been crabbing in the marshes of South Jersey since I was a kid (Turkey Point and Dividing Creek) Plus Cherrystone campground on the Chesapeak Bay.
  7. hennypenny9

    hennypenny9 Songster

    I just tried to find anyone that has a method like the one my dad uses. I can't! It's amazing. The way he does it, you can eat all the meat, with NO icky guts or yellow bits. I mean, even the body meat. He used to commercial fish, so he knows his seafood. I'm amazed. All that yummy meat that no one eats!
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2009

  8. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Yep, shellfish license. It's something like 7 resident 17 non resident in Oregon per year and something like 44 resident and 84 non resident in Washington. Could be off on the WA cost but theirs includes the fishing license. In OR, we're limited to 12 of the dungeness per day with minimum size of 5 and 3/4 inches wide, and in WA it is 5 a day at least 6 and 1/4? inches wide. It appears in WA you also have to record where you got the shellfish and the number harvested, and then turn in your cards at the end of the season or file it electronically.

    I can see why it would be necessary out here, since if everyone wanted to go out and grab as many crabs a day as they wanted, with a population in the greater Seattle area of 3.5 million, I don't know if those shellfish or crabs would remain a sustainable resource.

    From what I see and read, it appears the east coast blue crab is THE THING to get, while in the south, crayfish is the thing. All there is out here to legally catch to my eatable knowledge so far are dungenous and red rock crabs.

    Hennypenny9, so what's this fantastic secret of your dad's? [​IMG]
  9. hennypenny9

    hennypenny9 Songster

    Thank heavens, I found it. It's cleaning dungeness crab live. You knock the head off, break it in half, and pull out the guts, then boil it. I think my dad might have chosen to hack it in half with a cleaver, but he's a bit different, lol! This way the guts are gone before it gets cooked, and you aren't just served the legs only. (This drives me crazy!)

    What my dad does is similar. I still swear he used a cleaver. Huh.
  10. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    I'm going to have to try that. I'll do it on the back porch at the apt. I bet the neighbors will like that! LOL

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