Fall and winter on the Oregon Coast offer many opportunities for rejuvenating outdoor activities, and the Coast is my favorite place to vacation to escape the hustle and bustle of the city during the holidays. Whenever I am on the Coast I enjoy clamming with my family in picturesque Siletz Bay, nestled between Lincoln City and Gleneden Beach, where we recently spent the holidays.
One hour before low tide started, we headed out on a short drive from Lincoln City to Siletz Bay, bringing our clam guns, rain boots and containers in search of Purple Varnish clams. The weather was beautiful and cool, and the ocean air was refreshing. As I walked onto the beach, I was already thinking of cooking our catch that evening in butter, lemon, parsley, and garlic making for a mouthwatering addition to our spaghetti dinner.
Not finding immediate success, we found some friendly locals (and fellow clammers) who wandered over to assist us with our clam gun technique. With their help we started digging out Purple Varnish clams. After an hour we left with 15 clams and some new friends.
Before you head out on your own clamming adventure, make sure to purchase a license to take marine shellfish at the Lincoln City Bi-Mart or Eleanor’s Undertow in Taft, and call the Shellfish hotline at 800-448-2474 to make sure there are no shell fish safety closures to take clams that day.
For more information on clam digging safety and rules visit the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife website.