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Nov 15, 2013 09:54 AM

Dungeness Crab Prices 2013/2014 Season

The fishing fleet started hauling in their crab pots at 12:01a today for the season opener and sailing our favorite crustaceans into port to markets. Tell us where you're finding crab today and throughout the season and how much it costs.

"One processor said crab fishermen negotiated a wholesale price of $3 a pound, which would translate into around $5 a pound for consumers."

CA Dungeness crab season (recreational) began 11/2, commercial starts 11/15, good catch expected

Dungeness Crab Prices 2012

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  1. Woohoo! I have crab plans this weekend, but hopefully I'm not being overly enthusiastic.

    Any thoughts on where one could buy a crab this weekend? I was going to head over to Chinatown, but unsure if the crab fisherman would sell their first load to another source instead...

    To clarify: I'm looking for whole, raw crab to buy and cook myself. Thanks!

    4 Replies
    1. re: bobabear

      KGO radio has been saying that the sea is rough today & crabbers may not go out. They are predicting crab will not be available until Sunday....

      1. re: RWCFoodie

        I'm skeptical about that. Wind at Half Moon Bay is 4 mph, Bodega Bay is calm.

        1. re: RWCFoodie

          The Pillar Point fishfone says they don't expect to see any crab at the docks until tomorrow morning.

          EDIT: Oops, sorry duplicate of Melanie's post.

      2. I posted this in the earlier thread about the 2013 season:

        Had dinner at Woodhouse Fish Co. (Church & Market location) last night and they said starting next Wednesday, 11/20, they will be having a crab special, $15 for a whole crab plus (if I recall correctly) potatoes and greens. Deal lasts until the 27th (day before Thanksgiving).

        1. Pillar Point in San Mateo County: "Fresh-caught fish is sold retail "off-the-boat" directly to the public at Pillar Point Harbor, seven days a week. Call the fishfone 650-726-8724 for more information."

          I called the fishfone and the recording says no crab sightings yet in harbor, probably not till tomorrow morning, but it will update if that changes.

          11 Replies
          1. re: Melanie Wong

            As of now they have crab. Do you have to pay in cash?

            What do you like to drink with Dungeness?

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              I'm at Pillar Point Harbor. There's one boat, at E-6, selling for $6/lb. Another, across from e-6, now has 1.5-2 lb crabs for $7/lb. At least one of the other owners is displeased at the gouging, though, with a line 20-50 people long, they can all but do what they want. No other boats appear to be coming in for off-the-boat sales. Princeton Seafood at $7.50/lb live or $8.50 cooked.
              Morningstar Fisheries at the end of the pier has some day-old crab in a bin but may be getting more. $6/lb.

              1. re: dpifko

                Alioto-Lazio has them lively and enthusiastic for $5 lb. Why bother with the drive? Also they're never dicks.

                1. re: little big al

                  Not a bad idea, though I like getting them directly from the ocean, normally like supporting the fishing boats directly, and enjoy the scenery on the drive down.

                  1. re: dpifko

                    I agree, but the price should be somewhere between wholesale and retail. That way the fishers and the customers both benefit.

                    1. re: little big al

                      I expect it to drop after the wind calms down. Wouldn't be surprised by 4.50-5/lb

                  2. re: little big al

                    If you'd posted that an hour earlier, I would have gone to Alioto-Lazio, but I got all the crabs I wanted for $6 a pound.

                    It was a fun scene and I hadn't been over the new Bay Bridge in daytime or through the Devil's Slide tunnel before. I can't believe that gross parking lot campground with people having picnics.

                    1. re: little big al

                      Thanks for the pointer to Alioto-Lazio. Looks really good. It's not at all in my area, but I'll drop by next time I'm nearby.

                      1. re: little big al

                        Stopped by Alioto-Lazio, which is where we usually get all our crab, Tuesday morning for our first local dungeness of the season. Amazing as usual. $5/lb and the three I got were all 2+lbs. My last meal would be local dungeness and sweet baguette from acme paired with a montrachet.

                        1. re: little big al

                          Price is now $7.50 for live. They say they're having a a harder time sourcing now that many boats have stopped going out and the crabs are moving on. If you want more than a few you have to preorder.

                      2. re: Robert Lauriston

                        Probably depends on the boat. Some are tech savvy, some aren't. Best to assume cash.

                    2. It seems there should be a twitter hashtag for crab reports, prices, dockings, etc. from Half Moon Bay. Maybe #hmbcrab ? Pillar Point Harbor should be using it so they can get better coverage than with one phone line.

                      12 Replies
                        1. re: Ruth Lafler

                          I downloaded Fishline this morning. It's available for Android and iPhone.

                          It can also be viewed on the web,

                          The current service area extends up to Half Moon Bay and there's a section called Crabline (screenshot below). Most of these boats are in the HMB area. I called Reelization http://freshfishandcrab.com/ and the guy said to check back on Sunday, maybe crab then.

                          1. re: Melanie Wong

                            Where is it feeding data from? Does this include general information or live info as of the day you're looking?

                            1. re: dpifko

                              The Crabline is more of a contact directory with links and/or phone for text/call to check availability.

                              1. re: Melanie Wong

                                That's what I thought. What I'm more thinking about is a replacement for and improvement over the Fishfone.

                                1. re: dpifko

                                  Some have links to webpages, FB, twitter, etc. that could have current info. Not all require a phone call if they take the time to update.

                              2. re: dpifko

                                It's hard to tell from their site, but it looks like the fisherman are feeding live info into it:

                                "FishLine is the first app to provide a real-time list of seafood available from local fishing boats, fish markets and restaurants.
                                The original FishLine concept came about in response to the recovery of the Pacific salmon season in 2012. Fishing boats arrived in Pillar Point Harbor, Half Moon Bay with loads of salmon, but there were no customers. FishLine allowed fishermen to tell consumers directly, and immediately, when they had fish to sell off their boats at the harbor."

                                1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                  Allowing them to do it doesn't mean they do it. The first boat on the list has a Twitter account that has had no tweets since 2012.

                              3. re: Melanie Wong

                                Fishline appears to be working well. Thanks. Prices are holding steady at $6/lb at Pillar Point Harbor vs. ~$5 at the supermarkets. Is that premium about the same from previous years? I've never seen a direct comparison with live prices from HMB before.

                                1. re: dpifko

                                  $6/lb at Pillar Point Harbor is high compared to the past couple of years when it was $4. But there were also a lot more crabs the past 2 years, and the number of crabs per pot are quite low right now.

                                  I went out on Sunday for a crab/rockfish trip and the average was 8-12 crab per pot, but only a few of them would have made the minimum commercial width of 6.25 inches. Thus, some boats have packed up and moved out of the local waters.

                                  1. re: baron45

                                    FishLine is crowd-sourced app like Gas Buddy - anyone can enter a listing via either the App or the Website.

                                    CrabLine is a directory of crabbers & fishermen that will take orders over the phone, via text or via email.

                            2. Hmm... Time to hit 'Sotto Mare' and get some crab cioppino... ^_-