WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

February 21, 2007
Contact: Dan Ayres, WDFW, (360) 249-4628
Barbara Maynes, ONP, (360) 565-3005

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Last evening razor clam dig of season
tentatively scheduled March 16-18

OLYMPIA – Fishery managers have tentatively scheduled a three-day razor clam dig March 16-18 at various ocean beaches on evening tides.

Final word on the dig will be announced about a week ahead of time, once marine toxin tests determine whether clams on those beaches remain safe to eat.

The dig planned next month is the last chance this season to harvest razor clams on afternoon tides, although fishery managers may open some beaches for morning digging in April, said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

“We’d like to provide some morning clam-digging opportunities in April, but first we’ll have to assess how many clams are available for harvest after the scheduled dig in March,” Ayres said.

If the March dig proceeds as planned, diggers will have to be especially attentive to which beaches are open each day of the three-day opening, he said.

“As we get toward the end of the season, we have to juggle openings according to the number of clams still available for harvest at each beach,” Ayres said. As currently scheduled, the following beaches will be open for razor clam digging between noon and midnight on the following days:

  • March 16, Friday – Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks (low evening tide: 5:31 p.m., +0.1 ft.)

  • March 17, Saturday – All beaches: Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks, Kalaloch (low evening tide: 6:16 p.m., -0.1 ft.)

  • March 18, Sunday – Long Beach, Twin Harbors and Kalaloch (low evening tide: 6:58 p.m. -0.1 ft.)

No digging will be allowed before noon any of those days.

The National Park Service scheduled the digs at Kalaloch, which is located within Olympic National Park, to coincide with those at the other beaches. Superintendent Bill Laitner reminds diggers that “Kalaloch is a remote beach with its own unique wilderness character. It’s the perfect spot for people who enjoy ‘roughing it’ along with razor clamming.”

Farther south, the Ocean Shores Chamber of Commerce is planning a razor clam festival March 17 to coincide with the scheduled dig at Copalis Beach, which includes the beach at Ocean Shores. Information on the festival, which includes chowder cook-offs and live music, is available on the chamber’s website (http://www.oceanshores.org/) or by calling 360-289-2451.

Ayres said diggers should be aware that daylight-saving time will be in effect for the scheduled dig in March. “Some tide books do not reflect the fact that daylight-saving time starts earlier this year, which could be an issue in planning a trip to the beach,” he said.

A license is required for anyone age 15 or older. Any 2006 annual shellfish/seaweed, razor clam or combination license is still valid. Licenses can be purchased via the Internet at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov, by telephone (1-866-246-9453), or in person at more than 600 license vendors throughout the state. A list of vendors can be found at http://wdfw.wa.gov/lic/vendors/vendors.

Razor clam beaches are defined as follows:

  • Long Beach, which extends from the Columbia River to Leadbetter Point.

  • Twin Harbors Beach, which extends from the mouth of Willapa Bay north to the mouth of Grays Harbor.

  • Copalis Beach, which extends from the Grays Harbor North Jetty to the Copalis River, and includes beaches near Copalis, Ocean Shores, Oyhut and Ocean City.

  • Mocrocks Beach, which extends from the Copalis River to the southern boundary of the Quinault Reservation near the Moclips River, including Iron Springs, Roosevelt Beach, Pacific Beach and Moclips.

  • Kalaloch Beach, which extends from the South Beach Campground to Brown’s Point (just south of Beach Trail 3) in the Olympic National Park.

For more information, check http://www.nps.gov/olym/planyourvisit/exploring-the-coast.htm.