I just came home from a weekend camping trip in Coloma, CA. It’s gold country and it’s also home to the American River, which is one of the few remaining California rivers that still has a healthy amount of water flow. The fish were abundant and so were the crawdads. Crawdads are little freshwater lobsters. They are also commonly called crawfish or crayfish, but I grew up calling them crawdads, so they are crawdads. I didn’t get a fishing license so I could catch any trout so I resorted to catching crawdads. I didn’t mind. Catching crawdads is one of those things that everyone should have fond childhood memories of, and I gladly spent the afternoon wading through thigh high waters scanning the river bottom for the little fuckers.

Catching crawdads is easy. They like to hang out near rocks so they have somewhere to retreat. Once you spot one you have a few ways to catch it. The bold people slowly sneak their hand from behind the crawdad, then they grab it from the back, just behind the claws to avoid getting pinched. I’m not bold. I used a stick and a red keg cup. I would poke and prod the crawdad with a stick to make it retreat backward straight into the cup. It worked pretty well. I caught four of the bastards in an hour. I could have cooked them. I almost did. I kept them in a bucket as it got closer and closer to dinnertime. We ended up eating barbeque. They got lucky. I set the little guys free. Crawdads are tasty but they don’t compare to brisket.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young


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