By Jay Lloyd
ROCK HALL, Md. (CBS) — A getaway to the nearby Chesapeake Bay this summer could put visitors on a working crab boat, on the trail of Captain John Smith.
“Catch a crab and take it home and eat it -– and learn how they’ve been doing this for 300 years on the bay,” suggests Bill Blades, a charter boat skipper working on a Watermen’s Heritage program that recruits and trains the fabled crabbers and oystermen to cast off with visitors on an eco-tourism adventure.
The venture spans the waters explored 400 years ago by Captain John Smith. It’s a chance to haul a crab pot and learn how to tong for those delectably unique Chesapeake oysters.
“From the minute the engine starts up, and going out and learning to set traps, and learning the various aspects of fishing, it’s going to be very exciting,” Blades says. The hope is that with the shrinking fishing industry, a tourism option will replace some of the lost income.
In the meantime, take a look at a fascinating video that opens a window into the life of the weathered watermen, their heritage, and the flavorful bounty of the bay.