Monday, May 9, 2016

Razor Clam Digging Adventure

I figure anything we do at this stage in our lives is making memories be it good ones or bad ones.  Well, this last weekend we made some mighty good ones.  We went clam digging again!  Times to clam dig at the beach is limited but this weekend digging was allowed and the minus tide was the lowest of the year.  We already knew we’d get our limits of razor clams without a problem.  What an amazing time we had. 

  Family outing clamming on the beach a “few” years ago

(Edith, Ruth, Toby, Bob, Jim, Sandy and ME) ... Grace or Judy probably took the picture.

Terry and I headed to Long Beach Friday.  The drive was nice and the  weather beautiful.  Normally we cro7may__6ss over into Oregon at Longview and take Hwy 30 to the coast through Astoria.  However, we’ve done that so many times that we decided to stay on the Washington side and drive Hwy 4.   No matter which way we go it’s very scenic a good part of the way.

County Line RV park is on Hwy 4.  We have stayed there many times.   The RVs are positioned for a perfect view to watch the ships travel up and down the mighty Columbia River.  At $10 a night, it’s a hard spot to beat.  When the season was right, we’d even throw a couple fishing lines out even though we were never lucky enough to catch any salmon there.

7may__8After checking in at Best Western in Long Beach, we headed to the beach.  Then, we came back, got the truck and returned.      Other cars were driving on the packed sand and so we were going to do it too.  Only once did we have to shift into 4WD drive.   Then, it was back to checking out the town, the seafood and the shops.  We were thankful our hotel was right in the center of town.


Saturday morning came early with a 4:30 wake-up text and then a call. Our son and his family were on the way to the beach with the clam shovels, nets and buckets.   



The beach was packed with vehicles and clam diggers.  We weren’t the only ones to  take advantage of such a low tide.  

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Our digging spot was  off the Oysterville entrance.  Many vehicles were aleady on the beach and we drove quite a distance down on the hard packed sand before a site was selected. 

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Mission accomplished.  There were seven of us and we were each entitled to 15 clams each.


Early morning weather had been gorgeous.  However, not long after we finished the clouds rolled in and winds followed.   The amazing thing is that Terry even actually dug razor clams.  He normally doesn’t and he doesn’t eat them either.  I figure he really doesn’t know what he’s missing.  The beach doesn’t have the same draw to him it has to me but then again, I spent many days at the beach growing up  and our family had many clam digging adventures.  It’s just part of what we did.  My mother’s siblings and their families would join us for great beach outings.


Getting our limit was fun and easy.  It didn’t take long and before you know it we were finished and at a local restaurant for breakfast.  Afterwards we headed back to the hotel to get cleaned up, check out and  took the short ride 7may__23into Ilwaco. 

Now we need to go crabbing!

Ilwaco is known for charter boat fishing.   At least it used to be when fish were plentiful and catches plentiful.  Many commercial fishing boats fill the marina but not as many as there used to be. We’ve taken many boats from Ilwaco out into the Pacific Ocean.  Sometimes we’ve been on charters and other times it’s been private boats .. big boats, never a small boat here.   Boy, do we have stories to tell about some of those trips.

Crossing the “bar” in this location can be quite an adventure in itself but everyone should do it once.  The bar is considered the area crossing over from the Columbia River into the Pacific Ocean and nicknamed the "Graveyard of the Pacific" due to some of the roughest sea conditions in the world.  However, if the captain times the crossing just right, you might not even notice the roughness of the crossing  at all.  NOT !!  

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7may__27From May to September Ilwaco has a Saturday Market at the harbor.  We made a short stop to check out the vendors.   Many crafts, homemade products, food and plants were on display but our cash stayed in our wallets.    Next stop, Astoria for a little fuel. 

Many folks comment on crossing over on the Astoria bridge.  The building of this bridge was a feat within itself.  If it’s stormy, it might give you thrill but on a beautiful day, you have nothing but fantastic views of the mighty river and ships in the port.  Google it.


That was it.  What a great weekend.  Monday we head to Arizona for a few days!

‘Tis life on the road.


  1. I could hear the fun in your the pictures. I so hope to visit that part of our beautiful country one day! I love the beach too...

  2. always wanted to do some clam digging but we seem to have never been there when the season opens

  3. Looks like a fun time and more great memories made.

  4. We two, too, grew up on the coast but have never been clam digging . We like clams though as long as you can just swallow them. I don't like to chew them, ew!

    1. It was something we did often. We'd sit on the beach, boil the clams and eat them -- grit and all! Wonderful!

  5. Jim would love this. Me not so much. Ranks up there with fishing. But you had a wonderful fantastic day and we're with family. That's priceless.

  6. Success! How do you fix your clams?
    We had the best clam chowder in Astotia.
    Hope your visit in AZ is a good one.

  7. I'm glad you enjoyed your weekend. I would have stayed home for that one. Since I don't like early morning, clams, or boats you would rather not have me along. :)

  8. Oh what a grand adventure! Love the foggy coast, it looks so magical. I was "concerned" about driving the rig over the big bridge with my fear of heights, but it really wasn't a big deal, and yes the views are incredible!

  9. We still miss Astoria where our son lived for four years on an assignment in the Coast Guard. We'd like to revisit some day, but it wouldn't be the same without him and his family there. On to California instead! :c)

    I don't feel old looking a pictures of my childhood until I remember they were taken in the Last Century! :cO

  10. Clams, mussels and all kind of living creature one has to dig out of the sand would not be ending up on MY plate. Fish and lobster and maybe crabs is great. All the rest of seafood I leave for other folks. But it sounds like you had great fun!


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