OLYMPIA - Clam diggers have received the go-ahead to proceed with a razor-clam dig starting Saturday, April 25 at four ocean beaches.
Three morning digs are scheduled April 25-27 at Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks. Digging on all beaches must be completed by noon.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) authorized the digs after a series of marine toxin tests conducted by the Washington Department of Health confirmed the clams are safe to eat.
Dan Ayres, WDFW coastal shellfish manager, reminded diggers they will need an applicable 2009-10 fishing license, since April 1 marked the beginning of a new license year. A license is required for anyone age 15 or older. Anglers can buy a combination license or an annual shellfish/seaweed license. Also available are razor-clam only licenses in annual or three-day only versions.
"We strongly advise diggers to make their purchases before heading to the beach," Ayres said. "Morning digs are very popular, and no one wants to be standing in line to buy a license at low tide."
Descriptions of the various licensing options are available on the WDFW website at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/ . A list of state license vendors is available at http://wdfw.wa.gov/lic/vendors/vendors.htm .
Harvesters are allowed to take no more than 15 razor clams and must keep the first 15 they dig, regardless of size or condition. Each digger's clams must be kept in a separate container.
Kalaloch Beach in Olympic National Park will remain closed because the clams there have not grown to harvestable size.
Dates and low tides are:
- Saturday, April 25 (7:27 a.m., -1.3 ft.) Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks
- Sunday, April 26 (8:10 a.m., -1.6 ft.) Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks
- Monday, April 27 (8:55 a.m., -1.7 ft.) Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks
Locations of beaches scheduled to open are:
- 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 south jetty at the mouth of Grays Harbor.
- Copalis Beach, which extends from the Grays Harbor north jetty to the Copalis River, and includes the Copalis, Ocean Shores, Oyhut, Ocean City and Copalis areas.
- 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.