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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

December 30, 2011 at 4:19 PM

Plenty of coastal razor clams still on beaches as more digs to be set soon in 2012

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The final coastal razor clam of 2011 occurred on Dec. 22-23, and heading into the New Year it looks like more clams will be on the table for diggers in the coming months all the way into spring.

“The two nights (Dec. 22-23) could not have been more different,” said Dan Ayres, the head state Fish and Wildlife coastal shellfish biologist.

“The surf was low, the wind calm and the clams abundant (on Dec. 22),” Ayres said. “I worked on Copalis, and we did not encounter anyone who had less than their 15 clam (daily limit). The average for the evening coast-wide was 14.7 clams per digger with a total of 5,900 diggers out.”

On Dec. 23, “the surf came up considerably (with the closest NOAA wave buoys showing 20-plus foot swell) with 7.8 clams per digger trip, and that was only because digging was still pretty good at Mocrocks, unlike everywhere else with a total of 7,000 diggers out,” Ayres said.

Overall during the two days there were 12,900 diggers taking home an average of 11.0 clams per digger trip. Clam size at Long Beach was 4.5 inch average, and Copalis and Mocrocks it was a 4.6 inch average. No size data was available from Twin Harbors.

“We hope to have news about additional digging next week (after the New Years holiday),” Ayres said. “Folks should be planning for the third week of January for most beaches. Stay tuned.”

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