Some Kinda Good Goes Shrimpin’ on the Lady Jane

The Lady Jane
The Lady Jane is the only licensed commercial shrimp boat in the world.

I grew up in a rural neighborhood on the outskirts of Augusta, Ga. To get to any beach was at least a three-hour ride, but somehow, my soul has always been at home on the water. One of the highlights of my summer was at long last, getting to go Shrimpin’ on the Lady Jane with my handsome new husband, and what an excursion it was! I’ve read so many novels about shrimpin’ (check out Mary Alice Monroe’s Last Light Over Carolina), and have long dreamt of climbing aboard a real shrimp boat and casting my net. On a rainy August day, thanks to Credle’s Adventures, that dream became a reality.

For just $40 a ticket, we got to spend the afternoon cruising the St. Simons Sound, taking in the picturesque views of the Georgia coast and relishing in the wonderment of under-sea life. If I hadn’t gone to school to study marketing and public relations, I would seriously have considered becoming a marine biologist. The creatures that swim below the ocean absolutely fascinate me! Don’t be fooled by the name of the outing–we caught way more than shrimp! Jeffery, the naturalist and guide on our boat, quickly told us that “Shrimp are actually one of the most boring things we catch.” Our cast net reeled in everything from two varieties of shark, angel fish, squid, butterfly rays and the most bizarre little creature, called a hog choker. See for yourself!

You can just hear the excitement!

Jeffery was so informative. He educated us on every creature in the net!
Jeffery was so informative. He educated us on every creature in the net!

This guy has a great job!

It was so exciting to anticipate what would be in the net.
It was so exciting to anticipate what would be in the net. Those seagulls were trying their best to get a taste of shrimp!

We cast our 20-foot net twice during the 2-hour event. It stayed down for 16-20 minutes each time. Among the things I learned? How to de-head and de-vein a wild Georgia Shrimp fresh from the Atlantic, that a marine estuary is a mix of fresh and salt water to make brackish water, and all about the oyster beds along the coastline.

Now that I live on the South Carolina coast, I’ll be doing a lot more of this!

The Spartina grass against the stormy sky made for a breathtaking view.
The Spartina grass against the stormy sky made for a breathtaking view.

The beautiful green grass along the boarder of the water is called Spartina and surprisingly enough, this plant gives the water its color. It’s the base of the ecosystem’s food chain, and uses salt water to survive.

If you’ve never held a real, live shark in your bare hands, it’s an experience to remember! Even though this guy was only 2-3 feet long, he had me at his mercy.

My good lookin', husband Kurt held the Bonnethead shark.
My good lookin’, husband Kurt, held the Bonnethead shark. It doesn’t seem as scary in his hands. Ha!

I’d recommend this outing to anyone! View the slideshow below for more fun photos from our trip.

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Y’all know how much I love my Georgia coast, and a good shrimp. One of my favorite ways to cooks these babies is to pile them high on a bed of Southern, buttery grits. Get my recipe for Wild Georgia Shrimp & Grits here.

Fresh catch!
Fresh catch! June 1 – December 31 is Georgia shrimping season.
Jeffery and Kurt discuss the wide open seas.
Jeffery and Kurt discuss the wide open seas.

Thanks to Captain Larry and his crew for a really memorable, fun and great day on the water. We can’t wait to go Shrimpin’ again!

At home on the water.
At home on the water. (P.S. An awesome perk: You can bring your own cooler!)
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Where Friendship and Fine Food Collide

The Crab Shack
Tybee Island, Georgia

I’m convinced that all I really need in this world is a lifelong friend and a pile of crab legs on the Southern seacoast. There are times when my soul feels so content, like if in that moment life were to end, I could slip from the Earth with a smile on my face. That satisfaction, that fulfillment only comes from good conversation–the kind where you can bear your soul and not be judged, paired with the taste of food so fresh it was swimming in the Atlantic only moments before it landed on your plate. My blog, Some Kinda Good is all about good food and good company, and that’s what I experienced over the weekend at The Crab Shack on Tybee Island with Jennifer, my friend of 17 years.

Located just off highway 80 as you make your way onto Tybee Island, The Crab Shack–Where the Elite Eat in Their Bare Feet–is THE destination for all things seafood. Known for their Lowcountry boil, the restaurant has been voted Best Seafood and Best Outdoor Dining since 1998.

Offering indoor and outdoor dining, there’s really no bad seat in the house. When we first arrived, we sat on the deck overlooking Chimney Creek, and later moved inside to the screened in porch area when it started to rain. Since we visited in October, the boat was decorated for Halloween. From your table, you can hear boat motors cranking up and seagulls overhead.

The menu features the Captain Crab’s Sampler where you can try an assortment of seasonal shellfish with corn, potatoes and sausage. It also offers a variety of crabs–Snow, Alaskan King, Blue, Dungeness or Stone. Not only does The Crab Shack serve seafood, but true to its Southern region, they tout “The best barbecue on the beach or anywhere else.” The sides include corn, potatoes, sausage, smashed taters and slaw.

I ordered a Landshark Lager–only fitting being on the island–with a cup of Boston Clam Chowder and the Half and Half dinner: A half pound of snow crab legs with a half pound of wild Georgia shrimp for $19. 99.  It came with corn on the cob. There are holes in the center of each table for discarding shrimp hulls and empty shells and I love being able to just toss your paper plate when you’re done. It’s casual dining on the coast, the way it should be.

This is the large deck that overlooks the creek. Age old Spanish-moss covered oak trees hang over the area, creating an ambiance where it’s impossible to be unhappy.

You can also feed live baby alligators on the premises. There are 78 to be exact! Pretty cool to see.

Once we acted like tourists and took our photo with the Croc (this made me feel like we were 12 again on a family vacation), we took our to-go cups of sweet tea and made our way out to the beach. Jennifer is the red-head on the left, and that’s me on the right.

I counted 53 pelicans fishing over the ocean that evening, watched the sunset by the lighthouse and touched down in the Atlantic one more time. We rode 80 West back home with the windows down and Southern rock on the radio, the palm trees passing in the wind.

See more pictures below from our visit to The Crab Shack–and be sure to grab a good friend and make the trip. The only time you won’t find them open is on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

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