Once again this summer, local ocean-life expert and author Bill Lackner will lead a free clinic Friday at Siletz Bay about catching crabs in Central Oregon’s coastal areas. The season is getting better, William Lackner said, so participants most likely won’t end the day empty handed.
The group will meet at low tide, 8 a.m. on SW 51st Street for hands-on crabbing instructions given by Lackner.
“It’s some of the best recreational entertainment we have going in Oregon. Regulations are fairly simple and easy to follow, the cost of licenses is not too high, and you can expect a certain level of success,” said Lackner, who at age 72 is staying young on the beach.
“It’s the season. This time of year, crabbing is slow,” he said, explaining that the crabs have mated, and the males lost their shells. Shells just starting to grow again, which is good for crabbing, because the crabs with harder shells can be kept and eaten.
Participants age 14 or older need a shellfish license, a 5-gallon bucket, a crab gauge and up to three crab traps. Lackner recommends purchasing “Crab Max” traps with hand lines, which he sells for $27 on site. People must bring crab bait (chicken legs or thighs) and sturdy gloves.
Lackner noted that people can use any brand of trap and it doesn’t have to be anything fancy.
Though Lackner is the teacher, he has also been a student. “Over time I’ve learned different ways to prepare and clean crab — how to shake crab. … It’s an easier cleaning process,” he said.
Once the crab is clean, it’s cooking time. Lackner said he and his wife only eat three to four crabs for a meal.
And remember, Mist Restaurant always has crab on the menu. From Crab Stuffed Omelets in the morning and Crab & Artichoke Dip for Lunch to Succulent Crab Cakes for dinner there is sure to be something to please all appetites.