Sunday, January 2, 2022

     So, about 8-ish years ago a crabber drowned in Tomales Bay while setting gear. The tide was running fairly quickly and he tossed the crab ring out of the boat while, apparently, standing in the rope to the buoy. The boat was drifting quickly in the current and the ring net hit bottom and hung up on a rock. The crabber was dragged over the side from the moving boat and was held underwater by the current. The net wasn't heavy enough to drag him over but the Earth itself was. I told you this story in order to frame the next one.

    Today, three crabbers in a 12 foot boat were cruising down the channel off of Sand Point when the boat came to a sudden stop. Water immediately started coming over the transom and within seconds the boat sank. The three crabbers were able to swim to shore on Tomales Point and were brought back over by the Marin County Fire Department and the CHP helicopter. From the third-hand account I heard, it sounds to me like they ran over a crab rope and buoy that were held underwater by the ripping outgoing current, and that ripping outgoing current then washed over the now stern-anchored vessel. That'll sink you quick. I'm guessing that the 48 degree water is probably not conducive to continued human life, so good on those guys for getting to shore quickly. If you read this and you are one of the guys and I got the story wrong, please let me know at and I will correct it. Otherwise, it seems that the murder traps almost got one today.



Fish Lips said...

You know, that is always in the back of my mind when going in and out of Tomales Bay ~ running over a lost crab pot / rope just when you're at a critical point where getting hung up could be deadly. SO many pots / ropes get dragged out of the bay but they probably stop just where they can be the most dangerous. I'm not sure what can be done about it but it's quite concerning. Ban unweighted ropes and maybe use cotton string to attach the buoy so it will disconnect?

Glad those guys were safe and made it home.

Wiley said...

Doesn’t say if they had life jackets on, but another reason to wear one at all times. Glad they made it. Thanks for making us all a little safer and more aware Willy

Butcher said...

Can anyone recommend a source for real-time sea height conditions for the Bodega Bay area?
The Bodega Bay buoy after one year is still down. And now the Point Reyes buoy is out of commission.

Harvest Time said...

I like this one

But always cross-reference it with and noaa, while wondering if they are all based on noaa.

Harvest Time said...

Also has a swell overlay, and it's a free app.

Sea Daddy said...

I think weighted ropes are the way to go period. Tge floating rooes are huge hazard period.