Crabbing

Posted by MNAngler On August - 25 - 2009

This morning, we went out to Pirate’s Cove to go crabbing. We had purchased some crab lines and chicken necks from TW Bait and Tackle yesterday and they said Pirate’s Cove was a good place to go.

It was a bit longer of a drive than we expected, but once we got there, we had a lot of fun. The pier there runs under the bridge that goes between Nags Head and Roanoke Island. It weaves in and out and around like a big snake.

Crabbing off a dockWe first tried directly under the bridge where there are some stairs into the water. The moment we tossed our line down, we were getting tugs. My uncle, who is from the East coast, told us to pull the line up slowly and put the net under the bait to catch the crab before pulling it out of the water, or the crab will let go. We must have been pulling up to fast because every time we pulled our line up, there was nothing there.

To me, the tugs almost felt like fish nipping at the bait. As soon as I pulled up more than a foot off the floor of the ocean, the tugging stopped. Either they were fish or smart crabs. I even lost two chicken necks in the process.

After about 15 minutes, the kids were already bored, so my cousin, Tim, and I tried in an area with more open water while my wife and kids explored the area.

Tossing out the baitI decided to toss the line out instead of just dropping it down straight. Again, I felt little tugs, until one tug was a lot stronger than the others. The string actually slipped in my fingers it was so strong. I started pulling up slowly and this time, when I got a few feet above the floor, I still felt the tugging. I told Tim, “Get the net, get the net, get the net.” He got it and when he came back, we saw a crab at the end of my line munching away! We pulled it up and I yelled to my wife, “I got one!” She and the kids came over to take a look. It was a good 6″ crab, so we knew we could keep it.

I thought that I could hold it from its rear as I’ve seen other people do it, but this crab was smart and turned its claw behind its eyes and pinched me. “Ow, ow, ow,” I exclaimed. I didn’t know how to make it let go, so I just yanked my finger out. Then it grabbed a different finger! “Ow, ow, ow,” I yelled again. I dropped it in our cooler. I wanted a picture, but it would have to wait.

Waiting for the tugI told Tim about the strong tug and both of us kept trying. I got a few more good tugs, but the nipping would stop a few feet from the surface. You can really tell when the crab grabs on because it’s a strong tug and a good amount of resistance when you pull on the line slowly.

About 10 minutes later, he got one. I helped him with the net and he got one almost as big as mine. It got quiet for a while, both of us feeling good tugs, but none we could pull all the way up. Just before we left, Tim got another small one only about 4 inches that we had to let go.

It was a pretty fun experience. Lots of people were also fishing off the pier and catching fish, so we will probably come back with some more of the family to try again tomorrow.


My crabTim and his crab


One Response to “Crabbing”

  1. [...] told the family about the crabbing spot we went to yesterday and a few of them wanted to try fishing off the pier that was there. The [...]

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