Today, Frank and I got to try our hand out King Crab fishing – just like on “Deadliest Catch.” Well, maybe not JUST like that, but we DID catch (and eat!) a lot of crab!
[Warning: LOTS of pictures!!]
I knew we were in for a cool experience when they handed out the thermal suits . . .
Our boat was a shallow river boat, so we could navigate deep waters as well as rocky shallow places, with slats to hold us in place as we bounced along.
We suited up, climbed aboard, and were off.
Our group, Barents Safari, has a few crab traps that are licensed for tourists to catch.
We pulled up to one set of markers, and the crew reeled in the line.
They then used a pulley system to haul up the trap. It looked VERY heavy.
And we could see why – LOTS and LOTS of crabs!
They measure them, throwing the small ones back, and even passed them around for us to hold.
Frank has a tradition that you have to kiss the first fish or crab you catch –
The crew re-baited the trap with cod and lowered it back for later.
We did this twice and ended up with 24 giant King Crabs!
Then we sailed up the fjord directly to the Russian border (literally) to our own “crab house.”
The tee pee serves as the cooking hut.
While our crabs were steaming, our guide, Hans, took us to the border – which is half-way between these two posts.
We did NOT cross – there are cameras and agents watching, and you will face a huge fine if you stick one finger over. But was fun to see.
Then we sat down to feast – as many king crab legs as we could possibly want. Yum!
And ingeniously – heavy-duty scissors to cut them open!
We made our way back down the fjord with the sun on our faces and our bellies full of crab – VERY content indeed.