King Crab

I finally got my king crab pot out. The first check I had 1 female to throw back. An announcement told us the season would close on today so I went to the cabin yesterday to pull the pot for the season. I grabbed the buoy and moved to the center of the back deck of my boat and pulled the line hand over hand over the gunnel until I heard the pot touch the bottom of the boat. When I looked over the side, there was a huge king crab with claws a blazing. Only it wasn’t in the pot, it was perched on the top of the little pyramid pot I was fishing. It appeared too big to be able to drop down into the pot after it crawled up the side. I quickly grabbed a leg and slung it into the boat. It was the biggest king crab I’d ever caught. I pulled my dungeness crab pots and had 2 in them. I took all three crab in and cleaned and steamed them, then picked all the meat. One big king crab has about 6 to 10 dungeness crab’s worth of meat and is a lot easier to pick. I tuned in AM stations from Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver that night while reading old Alaska Sportsman magazines.

I came back today after a foot of snow had dumped on Juneau. I luckily was able to pull my boat out at the ramp and make it up the driveway to the highway without getting stuck. When I got home, I spun quite a bit going up the driveway, but made it.

Jeff and Kurt had not left yet to pull their pot, so I went along with them. People were out pulling their pot in the heavy snow fall. Everyone was catching lots of crab when they hauled their pots. Except for us. We got nothing. So we stowed the pot on board and tried fishing 2 rings for the another couple hours. Nothing.

As we were walking up the dock, I saw a pot in a boat we’d seen that had a good haul of crab and noted the simple design. I’ll work on making a pot for the next king crab opening, which might be in July. I tried to give my crab meat to Jeff as he’d given me the only crab he caught this year to me for Sara’s birthday. Jeff being Jeff, he said no. I pressed him enough that he said he’d take “just enough for Terri”, his wife, so I loaded up a quart bag for him and that hardly put a dent in the cache.

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