Saturday, October 1, 2011

PYO Crabs: The Other Summer Blues

Snorkeling for Blue Crabs in a marsh on Southern Cape Cod. These are vicious bastards and fierce fighters. I got pinched good a bunch of times, and one even drew blood through my gloves. Nine great, big, plier-clawed monsters, 8 male and one female, hiding in the rocks at a popular children's beach.

This was a high adrenaline snorkel, because the tidal bore here was pretty strong, great for covering turf -- all you have to do is drift -- but trying to stay in one place in the current and track a crab with claws this wide, that will rip your face off in self defense, well, that requires finesse. Good density, too... I hit a crab about every three or four minutes, until I had nine -- three for each of us.

Now what I don't get is, I got these beautiful Blue Crabs at a popular beach, in three or four feet of water. Anybody and his dog could have had them. Are Blues just not really a New England thing, or am I the only one to think of looking there? This is the northern edge of their range, but blue crabs on the southern Cape are nothing new.

Friends David and Deborah and I went into these with heavy spoons and a bottle of Sri Racha. Here's going at one with the back of a cleaver, and the money shot, a perfectly split claw...

These were about the biggest, sweetest, crabs any of us remembered, and David's been eating them in Maryland since back in the day. I hadn't enjoyed crustaceans and company so much in a long time. A shout out here to my buddies from C.L.A.W., who also would have appreciated this.