I have lived in Houston since 2004. I am not a Texan or even from the South for that matter, but recently I went on an adventure that makes me feel like a true Southern. Let me introduce you to the sport “crabbing”. Some people go fish, others hunt, well how about digging for crabs? Blue shell crab! On a hot summer Friday a good friend of mine, business social colleague too, invited a group of us to venture out East of Houston bordering Louisiana for a rustic day of swamp adventure fun to “fish” for our lunch, cook it, and enjoy some exploration on the bayou/marsh as well. The closest city I can mention in the county we called home for the day was called Winnie. Some outfitters shared their acres of land to help us explore and experience a day of off-roading, boating, and fishing for crab.
My first concern for this outing was “attire”. What do you wear? The city girl that I am definitely spent too much time worrying about this factor. My wardrobe is full of dresses, heels, and handbags. My casual clothes are fit for a yoga studio. Definitely a stretch for me to wear shorts and shirts ready to get dirty, but I sucked it up and decided fashion was not my forefront for the day. In the 95 degree heat plus scattered showers the best option was shorts and very casual/comfortable shoes. Definitely a hat of some sort, or visor, and sunglasses. Here is a real video of a “true catch” yay! Click this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYZ1Czb1IF8
Crabbing is quite simple by the way. By land, we attached string to posts from the shore. The bait was raw chicken! All we had to do was drop the chicken string into the swamp, wait a few minutes, then slowly reel it in w/ a net ready to swoop the crab and place it into an ice cold cooler! The crab would roam around and eventually they would end up somewhere “hot” you can say. This sport is effortless, just dirty, hot, and time consuming. Note though, there were 6 foot long alligator in the swamp eying our activity, our bait, and our crab. It is kind of freaky to see them pop up and out of the water. All I could do is pray they would not bite our bait and join our fishing party.
To top off our outing, we took a fan boat ride in the swamp. Our guide insisted we all take a spin as the driver. I hesitated but rallied when it was my turn. What a rush! I literally drove through brush, weeds, lilipads, I could drive over anything and everything with no impact just a smooth ride!
The day ended with our great feast. I am not a fan of working for my food…yes I am a city girl. Not interested in cracking legs, pulling pinchers, and getting little meat for my hard work. But in the long run, it was the freshest you could get, it was hard earned, and very social as we all sat together and shared in the experience.
Overall, this Trende Brende girl would recommend this experience to all of her city slicker friends. You must purchase a fishing license, FYI. Worth the day trip, photo ops, and stories to tell. Yes, you will be a dirty mess, but at least there is a good excuse!
Crab Crowd: Jan-Oliver Schmidt, Kara Jacobson Schwartz, Jessica Brown, Tammy Bateman, Melissa Guggisberg, Robin Hargrove Rowley, Blake Kunetka.