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Keep in mind: this activity is in San Francisco
Get Outside
Going Crabbing
New Coastside Bait & Tackle

Going crabbing doesn’t mean a flight to the East Coast, nor does it doesn’t mean a death defying high seas adventure. In Pacifica – a coastal town a mere twenty minutes south of San Francisco – anyone can pitch a net into the water and pull up a gourmet dinner.

Pro Tip

Don't worry about buying a license before you make the trip down to Pacifica. You don’t need one to fish from municipal piers such as the Pacifica Pier.

However, you do have to follow some rules. The minimum size crab you can keep is one that measures four inches across. Bring a tape measure and throw smaller ones back into the water.

What You'll Need

Planning for a day crabbing is much like planning for a day at the beach: layers, sunblock and possibly a good book. Check the weather before you head out.


Crabbing is simple. The equipment is minimal, the time commitment is short and the skill level necessary to pull up a crab feast from the bottom of the sea is that of a cub scout that knows how to throw a frisbee. And prime crabbing territory is but a short jaunt south of San Francisco in Pacifica.

The first stop in Pacifica is a visit to the local bait and tackle store to pick up the necessary equipment: a small list, consisting of a net, some bait and a bucket to hold the catch. That’s pretty much all you need for catching crabs. The New Coastside #2 Bait & Tackle in Pacifica has both the equipment and the expertise needed by the aspiring crabber. Picking out the necessary items and getting essential nuggets of advice couldn’t be more simple and enjoyable.

A short walk around the block is the Pacifica Pier. There is no charge to use the the city’s municipal pier and the only thing anybody needs to do to begin their crabbing adventure is to stake out a spot and toss the crab net into the water. A scant ten to fifteen minutes later the net comes up and waiting at the bottom of the trap is that evening’s dinner. Just add butter.

1604 Francisco Blvd
Pacifica, CA 94044
(650) 359-9790
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Tom Greenwood