OLYMPIA – Twin Harbors beach will be the site of the last razor clam dig of the season May 5-7, provided that marine toxin tests show the clams there are safe to eat.
All other coastal beaches in Washington will be closed to razor clam digging until a new season is announced in fall, said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).
“Twin Harbors is the only beach with razor clams still available for harvest after the two openings in April,” Ayres said. “Assuming the marine toxin tests are favorable, this will be the last chance to dig fresh razor clams until fall.”
Twin Harbors beach extends from the mouth of Willapa Bay north to the south jetty at the mouth of Grays Harbor. The proposed opening is scheduled on morning tides; no digging will be allowed after noon.
Morning low tides will be as follows:
- May 5, Saturday, 6:32 a.m., -1.5 feet
- May 6, Sunday, 7:19 a.m., -2.1 feet
- May 7, Monday, 8:07 a.m., -2.3 feet
For best results, Ayres recommends that diggers arrive at the beach an hour or two before low tide.
“With digging restricted to one beach, I’d recommend arriving early and getting your clams before it gets too crowded,” he said. “That may leave time to go fishing for spring chinook salmon on the Chehalis River or catch some shrimp in Puget Sound.”
Under state law, diggers can take 15 razor clams per day, and are required to keep the first 15 they dig. Each digger's clams must be kept in a separate container.
Diggers need a valid 2012-13 fishing license to participate in the upcoming opening, since all 2011-12 licenses expired March 31. The exception is young people under age 15, who may fish for free.
Licensing options range from a three-day razor clam license to an annual combination fishing license, which can be purchased on WDFW's website (https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov) and from license vendors around the state.