Spot Prawn Fishing in Puget Sound

 Posted by on May 19, 2016 at 11:24 am  Outdoors  No Responses »
May 192016
 

 

Spot prawns from Puget Sound

Spot prawns from Puget Sound

With a dire forecast of showers and choppy wind waves the previous evening, I wasn’t exactly thrilled about embarking on my first shrimping trip on Puget Sound yesterday. But, being a shrimp lover and not having shrimped before, I really wanted to try harvesting these tasty crustaceans from the deep. I was relying on meclizine to keep motion sickness away but I didn’t need it after all. The Sound was unexpectedly calm and peaceful in the morning and the sun came out to welcome a productive harvest.

Shrimping in Puget Sound is only open for a few days every year and highly regulated. After baiting the shrimp pots with a pasty concoction of cat food, fish parts, and pellets, we dropped them into the deep green sea. The weighted pots dove to about 300 feet to the bottom and we waited for our spiny friends to check them out. Less than an hour later, it was time to see if we could harvest our dinner within sight of the shoreline.

As the rope was slowly retrieved with the help of a pot puller, I gazed down hoping to see the first traces of the pot as it came to the surface. As the first pot came into sight, I could make out spot prawns swimming inside the pot. A haul of 60+ prawns from the first pot! And more soon followed. We had limits of prawns for everyone on the boat within a few hours.

Even without having to manually pull the pots (impossible unless you lift weights), shrimping is hard work: baiting and dropping pots, finding and hauling them up, sorting the catch, cleaning the boat. Later that evening, after enjoying a feast of fresh shrimp cocktail and peppered shrimp with garlic sauce, the effort was clearly well worth it. Yet another reason to be grateful to live on Puget Sound!

 

Share

A Great Season for Squid in Puget Sound

 Posted by on December 28, 2012 at 6:45 am  Outdoors  No Responses »
Dec 282012
 
Squid caught in Puget Sound

Squid caught in Puget Sound

This has been a great season for catching Puget Sound squid off the piers in downtown Seattle. In previous years, I have been lucky to catch a handful of squid each outing. This year, however, I’ve managed to catch several dozen on certain nights (squid fishing is usually done with lights at night). And the size of the squid have been really big (up to 11 inches) compared to previous years. In contrast to previous years, I’ve actually seen people catch their daily limit of 10 lbs. this year. Ten pounds is a lot of squid!

Squid are caught with a fishing rod and small squid jigs along piers and docks. The “take” is subtle. Most of the time, you just feel some increased resistance as you are jigging. But the jumbo squid will put a little bend in your rod as you reel them up.

Squid fishing is fun but the best part of catching them is eating them fresh. I have a favorite calamari recipe that I will post soon.

 

 

 

 

Share

Chum Salmon Spawning in Puget Sound Creeks

 Posted by on November 28, 2012 at 3:44 pm  Outdoors  No Responses »
Nov 282012
 
Chum salmon returning to Puget Sound creeks

Chum salmon returning to Puget Sound creeks

I was at a small creek that feeds the Puget Sound the other day to check out the chum salmon run. It was quite a sight to see hundreds of “dog” salmon running up the creek to spawn. When they are in spawning mode, chum salmon develop their characteristic purple and black bars and the males will grow big canine teeth (which is why they are also called “dog” salmon). In the next few weeks, local streams will be littered with moldy salmon carcasses to the delight of the fish, birds and mammals that are fattening up on them for the winter.

Chum salmon with large canine teeth and purple-black bars

Chum salmon with large canine teeth and purple-black bars

Puget Sound chum salmon will return to their native streams anywhere from August to as late as January depending on the stream. When I see chum salmon spawning I know that winter is around the corner.

 

 

 

Share