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Crabbing on Oregon’s Adventure Coast

Family Crabbing at the Charleston Marina

No trip to the Adventure Coast is complete without Dungeness crab, and the best crab are always the ones you bring up yourself from the waters of lower Coos Bay. Rent or buy a crab ring and try your luck; the payoff will be a fresh crab feast you’ll always remember. And you’ll keep coming back for more.

Here are a few tips we want to share from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. Be sure to read their instructional flyer How to Crab for important details.

  • Make sure you have your shellfish license (14 and older requires a shellfish license), crab measuring tool, pots or rings, cooler, gloves, bait holders and bait supply. 3-day licenses are available at local ODFW offices and at many sporting goods or hardware stores.
  • Slack water (the time around high or low tide) are the best times to crab. During slack water, crabs are generally walking around and foraging since they are not getting pushed around by tidal exchange.
  • Check all lines on crab pots or rings for kinks or knots to ensure they are durable and will allow gear to work correctly.
  • Fresh bait is best. Many different types of bait are used for crabbing: turkey, chicken, mink, fish carcass, shad, herring, clams, etc.
  • Tie the end of your crab line to the dock or pier from where you are crabbing. Throw your crab pot or ring in the water and start crabbing.
  • Check with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife website for the most current shellfish regulations and harvest notices.

Best Locations for Crabbing on Oregon’s Adventure Coast

Lower Coos Bay Crabbing Map

Lower Coos Bay - Map

The lower bay (from ocean entrance to the airport) is “marine dominated”, meaning there is little freshwater influence, and offers some of Oregon’s most productive shellfishing opportunities.

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Charleston Crabbing Map

Charleston Area - Map

Dock crabbing is available throughout the commercial docks in Charleston. Additionally, the Charleston Visitor Center and the T-docks South of the bridge provide excellent dock crabbing.

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Equipment Rental and Advice

Rental crab rings are available at many RV parks and other lodging facilities, and tackle and marine supply stores often rent and sell rings. Here’s a short list of some locations:

Basin Tackle Shop
63510 Kingfisher Road, Charleston, OR 97420
(541) 888-FISH
Open Mon-Sat 8am-5pm; Sun 8am-Noon

Davey Jones Locker
Cape Arago Highway & Boat Basin Road
Charleston, OR 97420
(541) 888-3941

Explore Clamming & Fishing!

Clamming on the Oregon's Adventure Coast

Oregon’s Adventure Coast is not just known for great crabbing, but excellent clamming and fishing as well. It’s relatively easy and the reward is a tasty treat best served in chowder, steamed or fried. Learn more about Clamming on Oregon’s Adventure Coast »

World-Class Fishing on the Oregon's Adventure Coast

World-Class Fishing
Fishing opportunities are in no short supply here. There are fish for every season and an endless choice of prime fishing spots to select from.Visit our Fishing page for information on charters and more! »

(541) 269-0215
50 Central Ave, Coos Bay, OR 97420

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