OUTDOORS: Summer crab season draws to a close

By Michael Carman
Peninsula Daily News

SUMMER CRAB SEASON will wrap Monday at sunset in many of the marine areas bordering the North Olympic Peninsula.

These include Marine Area 4 (east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line), Area 5 (Sekiu), Area 6 (eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca), Area 9 (Admiralty Inlet), and Area 12 (Hood Canal).

Catch reports for each of these areas is due back to the state Department of Fish and Wildlife by midnight Oct. 1.

There are two other areas that stay open to crab fishing via pots through Sept. 15.

These are Area 3 (LaPush) and Area 4 (Neah Bay west of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line.

These two spots stay open to crabbing year- round, but crabbers accustomed to setting a pot must make a switch to a different set of crab gear as no pots are allowed from Sept. 16-Nov. 30.

The only two marine areas away from the Pacific coast that will remain open to crab fishing after Labor Day are Area 7 north and Area 7 south near the San Juan Islands.

Sport fishers who crab in those two areas after Sept. 1 must record their catch on winter catch record cards.

Fish and Wildlife really stress submitting these catch reports in a timely manner since it is you know, . . . the law, but most importantly, it helps in figuring out allotments for the coming seasons.

“Catch reports play a major role in determining how much crab is still available for harvest during the winter season,” said Rich Childers, the Port Townsend-based shellfish policy lead for Fish and Wildlife.

“It's important that we receive reports from everyone licensed to fish for crab in Puget Sound — whether or not they caught crab this year.”

Childers added Fish and Wildlife will announce winter crab seasons for Puget Sound in early October, after completing its assessment of the summer fishery.

Crabbers can submit catch record cards to Fish and Wildlife by mail at CRC Unit, 600 Capitol Way N., Olympia, WA 98501-1091.

They can also report their catch online at tinyurl.com/PDN-CrabCatch from Tuesday through Oct. 1.

Here's something that may make a non-filing crabber crabby: those who don't fire off a report will face a $10 fine when they purchase a 2015 Puget Sound crab endorsement.

Sport crabbers who fish for Dungeness crab in any area of Puget Sound after Sept. 1 must record their harvest on winter catch record cards, Childers said.

Winter cards, which are free to those with crab endorsements, are available at sporting goods stores and other license vendors across the state.

For the full scoop on crabbing, visit wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/crab.

Gun show in Sequim

Over in Sequim, the Pacific Northwest Shooting Park Association will hold a gun show from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.

The event will be at the Sequim Prairie Grange, 290 Macleay Road.

The association is a nonprofit organization that offers a location to sell, buy and trade guns and related items.

Attendees can look for a new rifle in time for deer season, something for target practice, or a piece for home and property protection.

Guards will be on duty 24 hours a day from setup to take-down.

Food and drink are available on site.

General admission is $5 per adult, $7 per family. Children younger than 17 must be accompanied by an adult.

For more information, phone Don Roberts at 360-457-1846 or email donr@olypen.com.

Landslide threat

Unsafe conditions, including the threat of landslide, has closed Olympic National Park's Pyramid Peak Trail above Lake Crescent.

The park's trail crew plans to work with the Washington Trail Association to rebuild the 7-mile round-trip trail next month and reopen it in the fall.

Traversing ridges and switchbacks, the trail crosses a number of steep slopes, including an area prone to frequent slide activity.

The active slide area has created a hazardous situation and led to the closure.

Crews will work on a new route to cross the slide area at a lower elevation, with the goal of providing safer and more sustainable travel.

The Pyramid Peak Trail rises about 2,500 feet from the trailhead on Camp David Junior Road to the summit of Pyramid Peak.

Whenever the trail reopens to those with the constitution for a vertical trek, a relic of America's fight against the Axis powers remains at the top of the peak.

During World War II an enemy-aircraft spotting cabin was built to seek out enemy planes wishing to do harm, or at least capture photos of areas to potentially harm.

The Washington Trail Association said that the cabin is one of two of the original 13 spotter cabins that once sat atop our Olympic Mountains during the second World War.

A suggestion to restore the cabin as a reminder of the past and a memorial to those in the Armed Services has been made, but with the National Park Service's apparent inclination to let things move toward a natural state, I doubt any traction gathers.


Outdoors columnist Michael Carman appears here Thursdays and Fridays. He can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5152 or at mcarman@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: August 27. 2014 6:10PM
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