Saturday, December 7, 2013
"Lobster Pot" is a term often used to describe the metal vessel holding water which is boiled over heat to steam lobsters. In Maine, a Lobster Pot is a wire trap used to capture lobsters. To mark the trap and to provide a retrieval system, floats are attached to a line on the pot. Each lobsterman has a color scheme painted on the float, registered with the state, to identify his/her traps. To simplify the spoken language, the floats are often referred to as Lobster Pots.
The pots are colorful and add an interest to cruising in Maine waters. They are often placed quite thickly in areas that must hold many lobsters. There were over 2 million lobster pots in the water the summer of 2013.
One example of how thickly the pots are laid. The lobstermen have no regard for traditional or charted routes through the waterways. Navigating Maine waters has an additional challenge - getting to your destination without picking up a lobster pot in your props.
Examining this photo, there appears to be a narrow path between two rows of pots. However, this could be described as a trap for boaters. The white float toward the middle has a "toggle float." To ease pickup, some floats have a small float attached to them. Just to the left of the white float, the corresponding smaller toggle float (white in this case, a rarely color-matched one) lies with a line just barely below the water. Shooting for this apparent gap would surely snag a line.
While the challenge of lobster pots can, at times, be difficult and stressful, it is not a reason to avoid these scenic waters and the interesting places they surround.