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Nov 26, 2001 12:44 PM

dungeness crab this year?

  • w

I think it's the season now and every year a few friends and I like to play tourist and go to Pier 39 and get ourselves some delicious dungeness crab. But I heard there is a strike going on for the fishermen. Is that true? Are there still good crab to be had?

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  1. It's sort of a strike, although the season should open December 1 anyway. The crab boats want the price set higher than $2 a pound.

    Ask the guys at Swan Oyster Depot on Polk if you want more info. They do have fresh dungeness crabs, which I think are from further north (Seattle?).

    1 Reply
    1. re: windy

      That's not entirely correct.

      The season for Calif's southern district which ranges from Half Moon Bay to Gualala River has already opened. This is where the sweetest crabs come from. The northern district season will open Dec. 1.

      However, the local crabbers are on strike over price issues as you mentioned. When this has happened in the past, sometimes its possible to buy crabs directly off the boats by going down to the docks.

      I've had two fresh crabs in the last week at Chinese restaurants. These were from WA state waters and while good size, don't have near the flavor of our own local crabs.

    2. on friday we picked up some at the fish market next to the flying fish grill in half moon bay (on 92 a block from 1) - they were incredibly good - perfectly sweet, the meat was moist and firm enough to come out in solid chunks - the kind that make you go "ahhhhhhh" as you free it from the cracked shell and dip the whole huge piece into butter and then into your mouth! as you can tell, we enjoyed them thoroughly. they were $5.99/lb cooked. also saw them at the little market on the beach at pillar point for 7.99.

      1 Reply
      1. re: brad kaplan

        well, i must admit that i didn't confirm the origin of the crabs - i thought they were local, but i could be wrong - the strike is still ongoing, though several fishermen are not following it

      2. Worst comes to worst do what I do, which is to go crabbing on Ft. Point pier. You only need a crab trap -- which you can get at Hi's Tackle Box (3141 Clement) -- and your choice of bait.

        There are three schools of bait: fish heads, chicken backs, and salt pork. My best luck has come with a combo of chicken backs and salt pork.

        Only thing is you can't keep the dungeoness there, and a uniformed ranger will slap you with a fat fine if he catches one in your bucket. But the red crabs and stone crabs are mighty fine. I usually get about 6-8 keepers in 2-3 hours.

        I don't know about the toxicity issues, though.

        Actually, I don't want to know.