What could be more representative of the state of Maine than lighthouses and lobsters?
Throw in a few pairs of latex gloves, an engaging captain, and a little lobster education and you have yourself a fun afternoon lobster fishing on the waters of Maine.
It is still lobster season on the East Coast, where the waters are cold. The season runs until the very end of October. It is BIG business in Maine – in 2012 alone, fishermen caught 123 million lbs of lobster and there are some 3 million traps in Maine’s waters. Applying for a trap is difficult because one has to wait until traps are given up – some stay in the family for years.
If you ever find yourself looking for something authentic and interesting to do with your kids in Maine, I recommend hopping aboard “The Lucky Catch,” or another lobster boat offering tours. I took my kids recently, and it was a hands on experience for sure.
The Lucky Catch is docked in the cute town of Portland, Maine. The boat gives tours May-October.
Captain Tom is a wonderful teacher along the way – after donning our appropriate lobster fishing duds, we learned about Maine’s lobster industry.
Captain Tom let the kids bait the traps, and throw them down into the murky waters.
We learned interesting tidbits about harvesting lobster – how the fishermen are required to practice some conservation. If they catch a female with eggs, they have to throw her back.
While the kids are hard at work setting the traps, adults can simultaneously enjoy the picturesque scenery. Lighthouses, rocky beaches, and traditional New England homes dot the shoreline.
When it is time to pull up a trap or two, the kids are welcomed right in the action.
Then, because our little fishermen are THAT good, passengers can buy the lobsters, for a mere $5.00 each!!! What a deal.
After our adventure and purchase of one fine lobster, Captain Tom recommended that we walk on over to the Portland Lobster Co. ….Animal lovers – read no further. The chef will then cook your lobster for you right there, on the spot, and serve it up with corn on the cob and other sides.
I was sort of excited about fishing for my own food. However, my kids and I found that shelling and cleaning the lobster is not so easy… and it is much more appetizing to order it in a restaurant where they clean and crack the shell for you!
Overall though, a great family experience.
Some lobster tours in Maine:
Lucky Catch Cruises, Portland, Maine www.luckycatch.com
Connemara Bay Fishing Charters, Cape Ann, Maine www.cbcharters.com
Rugosa Lobster Tours, Kennebunkport, Maine www.rugosalobstertours.com