Last Updated on March 22, 2023 by Eric Bonneman
Crystal River scallop season is just around the corner, so it’s time to gear up for some of the best scalloping in Florida. The west coast of Florida offers some of the most productive scalloping grounds in the state, making it the perfect place to harvest rich and delicious scallops.
Florida Fishing Adventures is a premier provider of scalloping adventures in the Crystal River area. Captain Louie Argiro has years of experience in coastal waters and a passion for the water that he loves to share with others. With his knowledge and expertise, you can experience unique scalloping.
Here’s what you need to know about the 2023 scallop season in Crystal River and how Florida Fishing Adventures can help you make the most of your trip.
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DIY Crystal River Scalloping
Bay scallops are highly sought-after delicacies easily plucked off the ocean floor. Getting in on the action is easy and safe, making it an incredible experience for novice and experienced scallopers.
Special note: Visitors should be careful to follow guidelines and regulations on harvesting limits.
When Is Scallop Season?
Scallop season in Crystal River in 2023 runs from July 1 through September 24. During this time, you can expect to see plenty of boats on the water as locals and visitors flock to the area for some of the best scalloping in the state. It’s important to note that scallop season dates can change yearly, so it’s always a good idea to check with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to confirm the exact dates.
Where To Scallop in Crystal River?
Crystal River offers plenty of prime scalloping grounds, but some of the best areas to explore include the waters around the St. Martins Keys, the Salt River, and the Homosassa Bay. Captain Louie and his team at Florida Fishing Adventures can help you find the best spots and provide all the necessary equipment for your scalloping adventure.
How To Scallop?
Scallopers typically use snorkel gear to search for scallops in the shallow waters of the Nature Coast. Once you spot a scallop, you can dive down, scoop it up with your hands, and place it into your mesh bag. It’s important to remember to follow guidelines and regulations on harvesting limits to help protect this valuable resource. With Captain Louie’s and his team’s guidance, you can ensure that you follow all the necessary rules and regulations.
What To Expect on a Crystal River Scalloping Charter
The high sun of the season and the crystal clear water create the perfect setting to hunt for scallops in the shallow waters of the Nature Coast. After a short boat ride through coastal waters teeming with sea life, scallopers use snorkel gear to search for clusters of mollusks on the seafloor while enjoying the abundant sea life that Crystal River waters offer.
Once you locate scallops, you’ll dive down to your target, scoop them up with your hands and place them into your mesh bag. It’s like an Easter egg hunt in the sea that ends with a delicious seafood meal for everyone to enjoy!
Scalloping is the perfect way for a group to enjoy a day on the water. Almost all skill levels can participate in some way, shape, or form, making it an ideal way to enjoy quality time with family and friends. Days are relaxing and laid back yet full of the thrill of the hunt bringing smiles to everyone involved.
At the end of your scalloping day, head back to shore, where you’ll need to clean your bounty. Luckily, a wide variety of places offer a cleaning service, so you don’t have to worry about the work involved in preparing your catch. Check out area hotels, many of which offer this service for between $30 and $35 per five-gallon bucket.
Caring for Your Catch
Once you’ve captured your bounty of scallops, the ideal way to keep them fresh is to put them into a livewell. Placing scallops on ice before cleaning them is a great way to make them easier to open and clean. The cold temperature causes the muscle to relax, making them easier to open. Knives or spoons are often used to open shelves and clean out the contents for meal preparation.
How do Scallops Taste?
Simply put, scallops taste amazing! There are plenty of different ways to prepare them, but grilling and frying are two of the most popular ways to cook up these mouth-watering seafood treats.
When To Start Planning
Scalloping is a very popular pastime in Crystal River. Demand typically outpaces supply when it comes to charter captains, so reserving your trip dates early is essential. Additionally, accommodations in Crystal River are plentiful but heightened activity during the summer months means high occupancy rates, so advanced planning is recommended.
That said, you can check out real-time availability here on this page.
Scalloping season runs from July 1 through September 24, 2023. Most people start planning well ahead, usually 3 to 6 months in advance of the start of the season. However, if you’re looking to get in on the action and later in the planning process, don’t worry, as cancellations or trip modifications may free up charter and lodging space.
See Also: Crystal River Scalloping Charters for complete information.
Places To Stay
Crystal River offers accommodations, including hotels, condos, and vacation rentals. During scallop season, booking your lodging as early as possible is essential to avoid missing your preferred dates. Consider staying in areas close to scalloping grounds to maximize your time on the water. Florida Fishing Adventures can also help you find lodging options near the scalloping grounds.
The following is a sample of hotels and other accommodations that are close to fishing grounds:
- The Kings Bay Lodge
- Sawgrass Landing Condos
- The Plantation
- The Best Western
- Twin Rivers Marina
Florida Fishing Adventures also has our own “Client Condo.” That info is available here.
If you plan to stay at the Holiday Inn Express or the Hampton Inn, you get a 15% discount when you book a scalloping trip with us.
Scalloping With Florida Fishing Adventures!
Crystal River scallop season is an exciting time for locals and visitors alike. Whether you’re an experienced scalloper or a beginner, the west coast of Florida offers some of the best scalloping in the state. With the help of Florida Fishing Adventures, you can make the most of your scalloping trip and have an unforgettable adventure on the water. Contact Captain Louie today to learn more about their scalloping adventures and book your trip.
Florida Fishing Adventures is the premier provider of scalloping adventures in the Crystal River area. Captain Louie’s years of experience in coastal waters provide him with unique insight into the waters of the west coast of Florida. He has a passion for the water and loves sharing his love of the ocean with others.
Get in touch with him today to learn more about his amazing trips so he can put you on the path to having the time of your life!
You can click here to Reserve Your Spot Today