Let me start out by saying I’m sorry I have not been posting more regularly. But without decent Internet access I find it difficult to be enthused about posting. It ends up being kind of inconvenient to have to run into town to get on the Internet and cell phone coverage is very limited here. Plus, having spent last year here I’m just content with enjoying the area and not doing a whole lot of extra exploring. Since my last post I been busy here at the park with normal day-to-day routines. The days of been going by very fast and I don’t know where the last month is gone by. Last week my niece Terry came to visit me from Colorado along with her husband Kevin. They just recently bought a RV and spending several weeks exploring the West. They stopped by here for a few nights and we did some exploring. I took them to my favorite tight pool spot Strawberry Hill to see the harbor seals and check out the tide pools. Here Kevin’s teasing Terry with the starfish.
We also took a ride up to the top of Cape Perpetua to check out the views.
And we took a walk down to check out the blowholes by the Cape.The wind was blowing super strong as you can tell by Terry’s hair in this photo.Before we were done we ended up going to downtown Newport checking out the restaurants and shops. One thing that goes on a lot in Newport on the docks is people do crabbing and we were fortunate enough to see this couple pull in a basket full of keepers. To get this many off the dock is quite unusual, especially all big ones like this.
I’ve been wanting to do some crabbing myself. You can rent equipment for many of the local bait shops. But I figured I was going to be in the area for a while and hope to go several times. So, I ended up buying myself a crab ring at By Mart for $25. Basically, it’s just a piece of netting with two metal rings and you put bait in the center and lower it down off the dock. You wait about a half hour and when you pull it up hopefully you’ll have some keepers. The Dungeness crabs must be at least 5 ¾ inches across the back which is a decent size crab. You can only keep the males have to put all the females back, no matter how big they are. I ended up deciding to buy one of these rings and another little folding basket that goes on the end of a fishing pole and an annual license (for $28). Here’s what the little folding basket looks like when you catch some.
Here’s a photo of a small one in the crab ring to give you an idea of what it looks like.
The first time Maxine and I went crabbing we caught over 200 but none of them were keepers. We spent the entire day in two different spots in Florence fishing off the docks. Here Maxine as chasing a few small ones back into the water.
The next time we did quite a bit better only spending a few hours and caught three legal sized keepers. Here they are on the picnic table, waiting to be cooked. As you can tell by the lighter lying next to them they are good sized.
You drop them into a pot of boiling water and cook them for about 15 minutes.
And after they’re done cooking they get to be this bright orange color and you pull the outer shell off and clean them out. There’s lots of crabmeat on this type of crab.
I went two more days in a row after my first attempt, each time about three hours and did much better. The first day I got three keepers and the second I got two more, which isn’t bad at all. The best time to go is what is called the turn. This is either just at high tide or low tide when the current is not as strong, and the crabs can move around freely on the ocean bottom. I cooked them all up ate my fill of the meat. But had lots left, so I made a big pot of crab chowder which I shared with the other volunteers on our normal Thursday get-together. Everybody said it was really good and enjoyed it. This always makes me smile when I can share tasty food with friends. That’s just a quick update on what’s been going on. I will try to do a little better job of keeping you posted more frequently as the next month goes by here in Oregon. I’m off to do some more crabbing today and hopefully I’ll have some good luck. Best wishes and safe travels to all, Rick