I am finally closing in on my first cray. I went for my first proper cray hunt today (left the gun at home) with a mate of mine (Leigh). The conditions were far from perfect with strong NE winds and a meter swell. Unfazed we got in and started to search some new ground, very kelpy with plenty of cracks, prime cray territory. Not long after we got in Leigh called me over to an illegal cray pot which had an undersize cray in it. We pulled it out to get an idea of what a legal cray would look like. We were surprised to find out how strong they are, grabbing our hands tightly with its legs while kicking its tail violently. We let it go and followed it into a crack so we'd know what to look for in the future. After a few practice grabs we set off to find a bigger version. Soon after Leigh pulled out another undersize cray. We were pumped, we'd never even seen a live cray let alone caught one. Leigh seemed to have a good eye for them, always calling me over to have a look at yet another kitten. I could only find and catch those small cuttlefish!
I was looking into a nice ledge when I saw an unusual red pattern up against the back wall, I couldn't quite make it out. When I zoomed out I realized it was a nice red rocky! I called Leigh over to check it out & he replied with "to bad we don't have our guns." I looked back at him with a little smirk on my face as I pulled my knife from its holder. I dived down and knifed the rocky, I quickly got a grip of its bottom lip and dispatched my prize, Leigh couldn't believe it! We didn't end up finding any legal crays but were more than happy to have found the right territory and will be back on a calmer day. I had no problem settling with my "poor mans lobster."
Not long now...
Catching Crays is a lot trickier than I thought. So many crays eluded capture today, some took so long I almost named them! But finally after hours of breath hold and mind games I was happy to find out I was the smarter being. Cray hunting is sure tough on the gear, especially the wetsuit, though it is awesome fun. I am happy to present you with my first cray(s). Not monsters but legal I assure you! Feels like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I did them on the bbq with some butter, spring onion, salt and pepper. OMG! Mr Cray where have you been all my life!
If only you had smell-a-vision!
By Michael Takach.