Saturday, August 29, 2009

Clam Diggers

Last weekend we went to Potlatch State Park for a quick little trip (about an hour and a half away). Since this area of the Puget Sound is famous for their clams, crab, and oysters....we decided to join the club. We got a shellfish license and headed to the beach to dig for clams. We found out that the term 'beach' is used very loosely...this was no lay-out-your-beach-towels-and soak-in-the-rays beach. It was covered in oyster shells, mussels, rocks, and mud. I was really glad Trevor decided to buy a few hand tools at the local store because my plan of using the kids sand shovels would have been ridiculous...and would have made us stand out more than we already did toting our three kids and lifting a stroller down to the water.

We started out in one spot and started to dig. The one guy we talked to said the clams were about 6 inches below the surface. After about 20 minutes of digging...and not one clam...I started to walk around to see if I could gain any insight from the native clammers. Um, no. They seemed to be doing exactly what we were doing except with full size shovels and rakes. We almost gave up when someone suggested we move down about 50 yards because the ground was a little sandier and we might have better luck. This proved to be a good move because we had a few clams within a couple minutes at the new spot. To keep the clams, they have to be 1.5 inches or more across...with a maximum 40 per license per day. After an hour, we probably had about 70 or so keepers. It was really fun and the kids really got into after awhile.

We steamed some that night. And, really not that great in my opinion (and I'm a seafood fan). There were still bits of sand in some of them (even though we soaked them in fresh water for a couple hours which is supposed to help the clams expel all the salt water and sand). Trev thought they were okay and really wanted me to make clam chowder when we got back home...but turns out we killed the darn things by keeping them in a ziploc bag. I guess you have to loosely wrap them so they can breathe, otherwise they die, and shouldn't be cooked at that point. So I don't know how you keep your fridge from smelling like clams if you just had them loosely wrapped in paper towels or something...Eww. I tossed the rest of them. Guess I'll bring a designated 'clam' cooler for next time.

Anyway, totally fun experience for the fam.

Ry got one in his mouth while we were trying to get this photo....gross. :-)


Darin and Melinda 4:17 PM  

Wow! You guys are so adventurous, and Rylan looked like he was having a blast in his spectator seat. Sorry they didn't taste so great, but personally clams never taste that great to me, so I am sure you cooked them just right. :)

Carmen Goetschius 10:56 AM  

CUTE!!! Shell, you really do have such a wonderful eye. These pictures are fantastic. Have you taken a class? Fun adventure! I am impressed you were actually able to get any clams! Seems hard to me!

Dan and Anne 11:20 AM  

How fun! Sorry they didn't turn out like you would have wanted but what a great family adventure!

Tyler 2:24 PM  

Looks like a lot of fun! miss you guys!

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