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Old 03-03-2015, 02:41 PM   #1
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Shrimp - San Juan Islands

I am looking for some advice from others that have been successful. Where is the best bang for the bucks shrimp location for a slow trawler out of Anacortes? I want to have my opening day location set and ready to go! Everyone says Lopez - where exactly?
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:47 PM   #2
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Everyone says Lopez - where exactly?

Now that is the secret mountain-hidden lake puzzle huh. If someone told you it wouldn't be a secret anymore!!!


I actually have no idea, but look for other pots or follow the boat with a pot puller.
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Old 03-03-2015, 03:19 PM   #3
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I am looking for some advice from others that have been successful.

Trimix (because they're deep), Night Dive (attracted to bright lights) and a Slurp Gun (shhhhh, don't tell anyone).....


Sorry, not really what you're looking for, but definitely the most fun way to get shrimp. You can slurp up clouds of them.
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Old 03-03-2015, 04:15 PM   #4
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Last summer we set pots for coonstripes off of the north end of Humphrey Head (the east head of Shoal Bay NE end of the Island). The waters about 75 feet deep. Pick when the tides are less than 6' if you can or you may loose a pot or it may not be where you set it when you come back (don't ask). Shoal Bay is also good for dungeness if the seasons open.
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Old 03-03-2015, 05:59 PM   #5
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OK, I'll bite, (bad pun, sorry) what the heck is a slurp gun? I googled it and got some photos, but how does i work?
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:03 PM   #6
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I don't know if the shrimp and prawns in the San Juans behave the same as they do across the border in the Gulf Islands. If so, you won't get many shrimp, especially in a trap. Slurp gun sounds like the ticket!
Prawns are usually deep, 300' +or-. The design of your traps is important, as they like darkness, small mesh, easy funnels to enter. Bait is equally important. Some do very well with cans of cat food, others with the commercial Prawn bait.
Once you get them to the surface, you can tell the difference, as shrimp tend to be almost transparent, Prawns have spots and are opaque. In cooking, Shrimp will go mushy when over cooked (anything over 2 minutes) but prawns will go rubbery.
As for where they are, that should always remain a secret, so when you discover the SPOT, keep it to yourself.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:25 PM   #7
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what the heck is a slurp gun?
Think of a giant syringe (usually made of clear plastic) that is used by divers to suck up clouds of spot prawns. The really fancy ones have one way valves at both ends that are also used to deposit the shrimp into a goody bag.

As Oliver suggests, they are found very deep, but will often come up into the 200' deep range after sunset to feed (or in this case to become food). It's great fun. I'll see if I can drag up a photo of a deep water slurp gun.
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Old 03-03-2015, 08:04 PM   #8
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San Juan prawns

Jeff- good fishing for spots both south and north of Stuart Island, between stuart and waldron. 250--350' of water. also north of Parks bay on shaw island, same depth. Spot prawns are found in steeper terrain and attention must be paid to current--- lose a pot adios $250. lots of weight in pots, big floats, lots of line (400-500 ft). Pot puller not an option, its required. when you set your pots you stay with them and jog around, troll for salmon etc but don't leave them or they can be in Canada in no time google johns sporting goods in Everett, he has great maps, instructions, bait recipes, and a great fishing guide to the area. If you need pots, line, buoys etc Swedes Nets just off Hwy 20 before you get to Anacortes is the best source ($$) Ive found. Good prawnin to ya, Bruce
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Old 03-03-2015, 08:26 PM   #9
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The seasons for shrimp in Puget Sound/WA State vary on the year, species and area. There are something like 5 different species of shrimp that recreationally we can harvest but basically the spots and coonstripes are the targets. Sometimes the spot season is closed when the coonstripes is opened. When that happens, we can set our traps for the coonstripes as long as the pots are in less than ~150'. The regs say that protects the spots which are the big guys, fewer of and spend most of their time in deeper water. When we were targeting the spots, Lena gets her morning work out, in hauling 300' of line/pots and hopefully lots of shrimp.


Edit: Spot on Bruce.
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Old 03-03-2015, 10:14 PM   #10
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As Bruce said. . .Johns sporting goods is the best source.

We use mushed up old fish, clams, chicken backs, etc. for bait.

Jeff
The area you're talking about is called MacArthur Bank and is a mile or so South of Lopez Island. Very popular for Shrimping and very productive when done properly. You want to have some back up fishing areas that aren't quite as exposed though, as that area is near the confluence of The Straits of Juan de Fuca and Rosario Straits. A little wind and tide and that area can become unfishable very quickly. Below is the link for the map.

Be sure and get the WDFW guide when it comes out for special rules and opening dates.

http://www.johnssportinggoods.com/wp...rthur-Bank.pdf
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Old 03-03-2015, 11:25 PM   #11
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As Bruce said. . .Johns sporting goods is the best source.

We use mushed up old fish, clams, chicken backs, etc. for bait.

Jeff
The area you're talking about is called MacArthur Bank and is a mile or so South of Lopez Island. Very popular for Shrimping and very productive when done properly. You want to have some back up fishing areas that aren't quite as exposed though, as that area is near the confluence of The Straits of Juan de Fuca and Rosario Straits. A little wind and tide and that area can become unfishable very quickly. Below is the link for the map.

Be sure and get the WDFW guide when it comes out for special rules and opening dates.

http://www.johnssportinggoods.com/wp...rthur-Bank.pdf
Thanks yes, that is the one that I had head of from other people. I have been successful in Everett and on Hood Canal but this will be my first trip for spots in the San Juans. Thanks for all of the suggestions everybody! I think that location in the straits would be a solid 90min-2 hour run. I am tempted by the NE corner of Lopez suggestion. The season is so short I want to have fun and be in the right spot!
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Old 03-03-2015, 11:27 PM   #12
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Jeff- good fishing for spots both south and north of Stuart Island, between stuart and waldron. 250--350' of water. also north of Parks bay on shaw island, same depth. Spot prawns are found in steeper terrain and attention must be paid to current--- lose a pot adios $250. lots of weight in pots, big floats, lots of line (400-500 ft). Pot puller not an option, its required. when you set your pots you stay with them and jog around, troll for salmon etc but don't leave them or they can be in Canada in no time google johns sporting goods in Everett, he has great maps, instructions, bait recipes, and a great fishing guide to the area. If you need pots, line, buoys etc Swedes Nets just off Hwy 20 before you get to Anacortes is the best source ($$) Ive found. Good prawnin to ya, Bruce
I am going to put that one on my list as well! Thanks for the tip: ) My puller is ready to go but it always works great at the dock and then we have some sort of electrical snafu when we need it!

I am going to go check out Swedes Nets though another great tip!
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Old 03-04-2015, 12:40 AM   #13
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At least three trawlers netting bait shrimp for a (partial?) living routinely prowl Mare Island Strait. Here's one:


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Old 03-04-2015, 01:02 AM   #14
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We fish/shrimp there (Lopez off of iceberg point.) fish out towards a few of the halibut grounds west towards Victoria. Great success, usually limit 8-10 people by mid morning which is made harder by limiting to only 4 pots. You can't miss the spot, which is tagged by the armada of boats. We actually go out further and further to waters that most don't seem to venture to but is 3-5 miles to the south west. Mostly because it is such combat fishing closer to shore where most shrimp. It is a great time and many places to anchor for the night to do it all over again in the morning. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-04-2015, 11:00 AM   #15
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what the heck is a slurp gun? how does it work?
Slurp Gun:



You blind the prawns with a very bright HID light, stick the open end of the slurp gun next to them and pull the plunger handle to slurp them up into the tube.

Then the quickly put the end of the tube into a net bag and squirt the prawns out. It works best with a buddy holding the bag for you. Seasons are very short and the helium needed for deep dives is expensive, but it sure is fun.



We used to also collect crabs using kitchen tongs, but fish and wildlife has outlawed the use of "tools", requiring you to grab them with your hands.

My favorite way to collect crabs now is to find one of my buddies crab traps (underwater), remove a crab and leave a can of beer or a dollar bill in the trap.
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Old 03-04-2015, 07:28 PM   #16
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trimix spots

Jeez Scott, I thought I was a fanatic wreck diver, but spot prawns on trimix? Ill go to anthonys and have a grey goose double with all the prawns I can eat! warmer and happy (and cheaper)
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Old 03-04-2015, 11:23 PM   #17
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We fish/shrimp there (Lopez off of iceberg point.) fish out towards a few of the halibut grounds west towards Victoria. Great success, usually limit 8-10 people by mid morning which is made harder by limiting to only 4 pots. You can't miss the spot, which is tagged by the armada of boats. We actually go out further and further to waters that most don't seem to venture to but is 3-5 miles to the south west. Mostly because it is such combat fishing closer to shore where most shrimp. It is a great time and many places to anchor for the night to do it all over again in the morning. Attachment 37936Attachment 37937


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I don't know that we will venture out that far but thanks for the tip!
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Old 03-05-2015, 08:45 AM   #18
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The most important thing to remember is the currents are much stronger in the San Juan's than down around Everett. You need substantial weight to keep them in place. This is the voice of experience.

The first pot I lost up there, I set it while the current was running hard. The buoy immediately went under. I thought oh well, I'll just wait till slack tide and it will be pop back up. Did't happen that day. Several days later I get a call from another boater who found it and I got it back.

Not learning my lesson the first time, on another occasion I set a pot while the current was running hard, but this time the buoy was floating so thought all was well. Went back out and could not find the pot. I thought it had floated off so I spent several hours looking for it. The next day I went out to pull my other pot and saw the missing buoy pop up, but then disappear again. I circled around the area, and when I popped up again I rushed over and grabbed it. This pot had the larger size buoy on it and it still went under, so now I use two buoy's, one large and one small.
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Old 03-05-2015, 08:59 AM   #19
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Shrimp - San Juan Islands

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The most important thing to remember is the currents are much stronger in the San Juan's than down around Everett. You need substantial weight to keep them in place. This is the voice of experience.



The first pot I lost up there, I set it while the current was running hard. The buoy immediately went under. I thought oh well, I'll just wait till slack tide and it will be pop back up. Did't happen that day. Several days later I get a call from another boater who found it and I got it back.



Not learning my lesson the first time, on another occasion I set a pot while the current was running hard, but this time the buoy was floating so thought all was well. Went back out and could not find the pot. I thought it had floated off so I spent several hours looking for it. The next day I went out to pull my other pot and saw the missing buoy pop up, but then disappear again. I circled around the area, and when I popped up again I rushed over and grabbed it. This pot had the larger size buoy on it and it still went under, so now I use two buoy's, one large and one small.

How much weight do you put in the pot? Do you use square, plastic, octagon?
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Old 03-05-2015, 10:10 AM   #20
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I use a square pot. About 10 pounds would be good.
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