3 Feature: Featured

Let's talk about clams

Let’s talk clams. Especially when we have minus tides, it’s a great opportunity to get out for a fun and affordable adventure with your friends and family for some night clamming because these tides are after sunset this time around.  

Clamming at night can be a thrill — just grab your headlamps and flashlights and head to your favorite local clamming spot. Oregon has 360 miles of coastline, so you’re never far from a clamming hole, especially here on the central Oregon coast because in nearly every Oregon estuary, some species of clams can be found. 

Let’s start with the Siletz Bay. Some of the highest density of purple varnish clams in Oregon can be found here, and with the limits of purple varnish clams being 72 per person, this is a great species to harvest for some pretty spectacular clam-packed family dinners. 

Next, let’s head down to the Yaquina Bay, which offers the widest variety of clams, from gapers, butters, cockles, littlenecks, softshells and purple varnish. According to ODFW, one of the most popular clam beds in Yaquina Bay, the Bridge Bed, hosts a very healthy population of gaper clams. Gaper clams have a limit of 12 per person, but those gapers are a massive species, so that’s plenty of meat to go around for a huge family feast. 

The limit for cockles is 20 per person, they’re super easy to rake up, and when cleaned properly have the whitest, most delicious meat and are incredibly versatile for just about any clam dish, making these clams my personal favorite. 

So no matter where you’re located here on the central Oregon coast, you’re never far from harvesting a spectacular dinner — all you have to do is go out and dig it up. 

Be sure to always check with ODFW for licensing requirements and shellfish regulations.