Yum! It's lobster season!

I remember seeing some doper’s (Johnnie L.A.?) thread on lobster fishing and being jealous. Then I was thinking, hell, I can do it here! Last year I was looking at Craigslist activities and saw someone looking for a partner to go lobster fishing by kayak. I gave him a call and we went out. It was hell. Bugs are nocturnal so you have to go at night. The surf was pretty big and I kept on wiping out trying to get out. The nets kept on falling off the fucking side of the kayak. I was paddling like hell and getting nowhere and then I noticed that my spotlight was dragging in the water. So we get out to where we want to drop our nets and then I notice that I’ve forgotten my glow sticks that mark the buoys so you can locate your lobster net. So I go all the way back in and discover that I actually had the glow sticks in the pouch of my seat all the time. FUCK! So, I fight my way back out through the surf wiping out a couple more times. Of course, I didn’t catch anything.

It’s opening day of lobster season, so I give my buddy a call and we go out tonight. It’s flat as a lake and no sweat to get through the surf. We don’t have much luck and my friend wants to head up current a mile or so. I’m thinking about bailing, but it’s pretty sketchy kayaking at night without a buddy (he almost got ran over by a power boat tonight) so I suck it up and go with him.

Woo hoo! I caught two lobsters in a single trap! Delicious! I just boiled them up and dipped them in butter. Oh my god! So, I have one more boiled lobster tail. Does anyone have a good recipe for cooked lobster meat?

Oh yeah, I also managed to lose a net because the rope was too short and my buoy got pulled below water where I couldn’t reach it. I don’t care, I caught lobsters!

Where are you located? That sounds like a weird way to catch lobsters!

His location appears to be Santa Barbara, California.

Catching lobsters by sea kayak is actually a very common way to do it here in California. There are very strict regulations on how lobsters can be taken, how big they have to be, and how many you can catch, and the regulations are enforced with considerable stringency by police and the fish and game people.

Yeah, I’m from Santa Barbara and it is a weird way to fish for lobsters. It’s a real pain in the ass actually. My buddy was telling me, “You’ve got to pull it together and not take so long to set your traps.”.

I glared at him, and retorted, “I’m not an idiot. This takes some practice. Do you really think I’m trying to take a half an hour to drop each net?”. You’ve got to manage three 36" steel hoop nets with stinky mackerel stuck in them, each with two buoys and about 50 or 80 feet of line. If you don’t know what you are doing the lines get all tangled. Plus, when retrieving the net, you have to yank it up in a hurry, so it’s difficult to keep 50’ of line all nice and organized. Plus it was pitch black and foggy. It’s pretty easy to fall out of your boat, too.

That said, it’s pretty fun to be out on the water, and I like to do it even if I don’t catch anything. Normally you’ll catch other weird types of animals like spider crabs and sand sharks. You can also catch edible rock crabs, but that’s not nearly as exciting as catching a lobster.

I think I’m going to make a lobster roll out of the remaining lobster tail. I’ve never actually had one, but it sounds delicious!

Make an omelet. Slice the tail and warm it up in some butter with fresh tarragon and chives. Make a nice soft omelet and fill with the lobster.

Also, if you didn’t, next time you get some, don’t forget to pick the body meat. You should get a good quarter-cup of meat per body for a pound and a quarter lobster. More for a bigger one. I always collect the bodies others refuse to pick. Yow!

Tell me about it. I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around how those net traps work. Sidenote–that lobster in mhendo’s first link is redder than I’ve ever seen in a live lobster. Maybe things are different on the west coast.

Yeah, they sure are. That there is a spiny lobster. Dunno what they taste like, nor do I know if they have meat in the body like a Maine lobster, which is what I was referring to in my first post.

Anyone know if there is a quantitative difference in taste/texture between one and the other?

Personally, I don’t notice a difference. They’re both terrific.

This what they look like raw and cooked.

OK, it’s lobster omelets for breakfast and lobster rolls for dinner!

Think of it as a basket that the lobster crawls into to eat the bait. They can jump back out if they like. That’s why it is that much more difficult to catch the dudes. You have to pull up the trap quickly and steadily or else they will escape.

I only had a non-Maine lobster once when I was young and I distinctly remember thinking “what the hell is this? I thought I ordered lobster.” It could have been the resteraunt, but I’ve never bothered with any other lobster since. YMMV of course. I should try again, just to be sure. Unfortunately, the Missouri coast is not as good for lobster as you might think. I’d be lucky to get any lobster. We got Crayfish though.

No it’s not! It’s wabbit season!

No, no no! It’s duck season!