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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all I grew up crabbing and rock fishing the north California coast. I'm headed to the Oregon coast December 19th to do some last minute crabbing fishing. Staying at nahelem bay state park. Does anyone have any guidance on good spots in the bay also if I'm better off in nahelem or Tillamook? I also would really like to take advantage of my $100 license and catch some Rock fish in Tillamook around the jetties. I have a 16' boat, 6 overnight pots and 3 rings. I'm hoping the rain doesn't pick up to bad before then...
 

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Hey all I grew up crabbing and rock fishing the north California coast. I'm headed to the Oregon coast December 19th to do some last minute crabbing fishing. Staying at nahelem bay state park. Does anyone have any guidance on good spots in the bay also if I'm better off in nahelem or Tillamook? I also would really like to take advantage of my $100 license and catch some Rock fish in Tillamook around the jetties. I have a 16' boat, 6 overnight pots and 3 rings. I'm hoping the rain doesn't pick up to bad before then...
If it is raining a lot go to Netarts. It has no major rivers flowing into it. We crabbed a couple weeks ago when all the rivers were at flood stage and still did okay.
Hey all I grew up crabbing and rock fishing the north California coast. I'm headed to the Oregon coast December 19th to do some last minute crabbing fishing. Staying at nahelem bay state park. Does anyone have any guidance on good spots in the bay also if I'm better off in nahelem or Tillamook? I also would really like to take advantage of my $100 license and catch some Rock fish in Tillamook around the jetties. I have a 16' boat, 6 overnight pots and 3 rings. I'm hoping the rain doesn't pick up to bad before then...
For that size boat , go to Netarts Bay
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If it is raining a lot go to Netarts. It has no major rivers flowing into it. We crabbed a couple weeks ago when all the rivers were at flood stage and still did okay.
Appreciate that info I have read that and am watching the weather closely. I booked a camp spot at nahelem but don't mind diving to netarts if needed.
 

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Yes if the rain stays away then you should do pretty well in Nehalem. Be aware though they remove the state park boat dock in the winter so if there's any sort of strong wind you could launch out of the 101 launch or wheeler. Just be careful, it's shallow on that end of the bay as you find the channel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Is anyone willing to share what areas of the bay are best for crabbing? Id imaging if there is much for rain closer to the Jetty? I also plan on leaving my pots overnight and checking them in the morning if we are unable to fill our limits during the day.
 

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I would say check the tide tables. We have some big tide swings this next weekend, Dec 4. The next set of tides during your visit is high roughly midday and ebbing all afternoon, about 8 foot swing. Netarts has issues with big ebb tides and boats getting in trouble that get too close to the entrance. Morning would be incoming tide. Consider these tide swings when leaving gear out overnight. You might lose it if the current gets ahold of it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I would say check the tide tables. We have some big tide swings this next weekend, Dec 4. The next set of tides during your visit is high roughly midday and ebbing all afternoon, about 8 foot swing. Netarts has issues with big ebb tides and boats getting in trouble that get too close to the entrance. Morning would be incoming tide. Consider these tide swings when leaving gear out overnight. You might lose it if the current gets ahold of it.
I looked them up I have weighted all my pots with extra steel, and have 100 feet of lead core rope. Do you think I will encounter issues with them being drug out?? I have never been able to afford the pots until not (always used rings mostly from Jettys) do you think I will have an issue?
 

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You might try the search 'netarts bay', 'crabbing', 'boat lost' and see some of the things posted about boats, ebb tides and that not navigable bar. Losing power near the bay entrance on an ebb tide is a good way to get in trouble. If it was me I would get a map and note where the water is deeper and where the shoals are. The crabbing areas are well established. Most likely you will not be the only boat out there. The bay is not very big and there are alot of shoals. We pick butter and gaper clams in Netarts and you can wade to some of the shoals from the road on a low tide.

Mostly I fish offshore and crab offshore there too. Tide is not as much of an issue and we don't lose gear very often, even on overnight soaks. Offshore, the issue is the north wind and floats you can't see in the afternoon whitecaps. I don't do overnight soaks in any of the bays I fish in but we crab at night. The gear goes to the beach when we do. For several reasons. One is the pots I see bobbing in the channel on an ebb tide heading for the sea as I head out to fish offshore. The pots were not stolen, by humans. The tide got em. Usually those 'stolen' pots have antifreeze jugs or 2-1/2 gallon oil jugs for floats. If the floats can lift your pot off the bottom it will go at some point. The other issue is sea lions. We have a bunch in Newport and they love salmon crab bait. They can be a pain when we crab at night in Newport. Not sure about sea lions and Netarts as I don't fish there. Often if I get to my gear late and the tide is already ebbing the floats will get sucked under. Once the tide slacks they pop up again with all manner of seaweed and kelp tangled in the floats. We use a concrete block clipped to the line 6 - 10 feet from the pot and the right amount of floats so they don't move.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I am staying at Nehalem bay and hoping to crab there NOT netarts (unless there is a lot of rainfall and that's my best option.

I did not realize most people don't leave there pots soaking overnight. I have added about 5 lbs of weight to each of my traps so far in holes that I would be able to overnight soak in the bay.

Does anyone else have any advice or input on Nehalem bay or overnight soaking in the bays?
 

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I did not realize most people don't leave there pots soaking overnight. I have added about 5 lbs of weight to each of my traps so far in holes that I would be able to overnight soak in the bay.
All the current going in and out has a good chance of kelp or other flotsam snagging up on your lines. If there is current in the morning when you go check, the buoys will be held underwater by the debris.

Also, crabs have a way of escaping from Danielson's if they are soaked too long.

Hopefully you will get your limit within a short time as recreation crabbing has been spectacular this year.

The only time I've left pots overnight was in the ocean and they were fairly close to my anchored boat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I have added the weight to the trap, and am adding the weight to the doors as others have advised.

Its great to hear that the crabbing has been good!

Sounds like I need to reconsider my hopes of overnight soaks...

Another question is when the tide slacks can you then locate you buoys/traps? or are they often drug off as well?
 

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5 pounds won't hold a Danielson in a current, my ocean Danielsons are 25 pounds. Grass and slimy junk will hang on the doors and hold them open letting Mr. Crab and his squeeze to escape - bay problem. As already mentioned, the gunk will also collect on the line and either suck the float under or make the pot walk away. Overnighting in a bay other than Depoe on a large tidal change with a light pot? I'll be looking for a report of stolen pots next week.

A lot of bay crabbers run an hour before to an hour after high. On a light tide, a bit longer if away from the jaws.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Well I'm sure glad you guys chimed in!

I do have 2 of the commercial style round pots that are much heavier. Would I be ok leave them overnight with double buoys?

I'm sorry I'm not trying to beat a dead horse I really just hoped to be able to capitalize as much as possible on my short trip.
 

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Heavier is less risk of it walking away. The problem with bay crabbing is current and junk in the water that flows back and forth with the tide. In the wrong spot you will load up your line with enough gunk it will pull the float down and stay down. Excessive line makes it worse. Way too many variables to say your pots would be safe in the bay if not closely watched. Predicted current in Garibaldi this weekend is 4 kts at peak flows in the middle of the tide exchange. That's a lot of current pulling on a rope that's grown to 3" or 4" in diameter from grass and goo. That's why most recreational bay crabbers only crab a few hours around high slack.
 

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I have added the weight to the trap, and am adding the weight to the doors as others have advised.

Its great to hear that the crabbing has been good!

Sounds like I need to reconsider my hopes of overnight soaks...

Another question is when the tide slacks can you then locate you buoys/traps? or are they often drug off as well?
as several others have said, I would not soak them overnight in the bay...we haven't had real luck and it was a pain in the ass to pull them. Ocean a different story.
 
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