In Photos: The Kayakers of Trinidad Bay

Photos and story by Kaylee Brown

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Humboldt County lies on the Pacific Northwest coastline and is a part of the famous Redwood National Park in Northern California, roughly six hours southwest of Eugene. The little coastal towns are not only similar to Eugene in their climate, but also in the outdoor activities—such as hiking, biking, rock climbing, and kayaking—that their residents enjoy.

Among the outdoor enthusiasts found in Humboldt County, there is a small sub-group of individuals that regularly go crabbing in the ocean in their seawater kayaks, which is something that I thought was fascinating. My family is form Humboldt County, and when I learned about kayak crabbing, I thought it would be great to do a photo essay on the passion these individuals show for the ocean and the crabbing process itself.

Typically, the crabbers launch their kayaks early in the morning. By noon, they’re home and ready to cook and enjoy some delicious Dungeness crab, a delicacy of the Pacific Northwest.

But ocean kayaking has many risks, with strong tides, sea sickness, and shark attacks among them. In 2012, at least two Great White sharks were spotted in the Trinidad Bay, where these photos taken, and one attack was reported in the Eureka area. Regardless, the risks don’t keep the crabbers away from doing what they truly enjoy.