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Friday, January 23, 2015

Keep Clam and other adventures on the Beach!

 I'd never been clamming  before.  My dear husband was just itching to go, so we packed up our camp trailer on Monday and headed to the coast.  Our destination is only about an hour & a half from home.  You dig for clams about an hour before low tide, even if it's after dark.  I refused to be on the beach in the dark, but we got our limit of clams quite easily before the sun was completely set.
 There were an unbelievable number of people on the beach!  We must have seen 1,000 people and at least 500-600 cars!  Everyone was polite and orderly, but it seemed very weird to move around the beach searching for clams with such a huge crowd.   I can't imagine where they all came from since the local towns are very small.

My dear husband (in the red plaid shirt) was having a blast.  I enjoyed it immensely right up until a sneaker wave hit the back of my legs clear up to my backside and just about took my feet out from under me.  I grabbed for DH, he grabbed for me and I stayed on my feet, but my rubber boots were filled with icy cold ocean water and the next 45 minutes or so were not the most enjoyable of my life.  It is winter, after all.
 Have you ever tried to walk in rubber boots that are filled with ice water?  I don't really recommend it. 

The day had been mostly sunny and pleasantly mild but once the sun went down it got pretty chilly.
 The ocean was calm and the clams (razor clams) were plentiful and quite easy to find.  I had absolutely no idea that all that sea life was just underfoot . 

Kind of creepy to think how many times we've walked the beach and really it was teeming with life just below the surface!  Ewwwwww!
 As usual, we can't make ourselves eat 'camp' we dined on pubhouse halibut, steamed broccoli, new potatoes and parmesan garlic rolls.....and coffee, of course.
 Here's our haul from the first day.   We repeated our fun the next day, sans the dunking in the cold water.  It was much more enjoyable staying dry.  We had our limit in about a half hour.   Now personally, I think clams are creepy and I can't imagine the first person who found one in the sand and thought, hmmm, here's an ugly blob in a hard shell.....guess I'll eat it.
 The weather is often unpredictable at the beach, though you can usually count on rain & fog in January.  It was amazingly pleasant for our little adventure and I got some nifty pictures.

(You should be able to click on any of them and they will enlarge so you can see them better.)
 Like a little kid, I can't help collecting things as I walk along.  Here are my finds from this outing.....I especially liked the barnacle-covered shell.

Have you ever broken a sand dollar and found the little 'birds' inside?  We loved to do that as children!
 It was so nice out on Wednesday morning that we were able to sit outside for awhile in the sunshine and weren't even chilly!

Some of the other campers dropped in and chatted about their clamming experiences, too.
 I think this pic with the seagull was my best shot.
 In between watching DH dig and pointing out clam holes to him, I was able to enjoy watching the sun go down as well.  We do have the advantage of gorgeous sunsets over our beaches which, of course, the east coast doesn't get to see.
 One last sunset view and that's all for this trip! 

A gal in a little shop gave us a recipe for baking the fresh clams.  You just dip them in a beaten egg, roll in crushed Ritz crackers and put them on a foil-lined baking sheet.  Drizzle with butter and bake at 500* (yes, HOT!) for 8-10 minutes or until crisp & golden.  Husband LOVED them.  I bravely chewed up one and then generously allowed him to eat the rest.  I'm just not a seafood lover.
Evenings in the camper we watched a couple of movies, had a Yahtzee marathon (I won, of course!) and I got a little crocheting done on my afghan.

We stayed at Grayland Beach State Park and it was a blast!  The campsites are gorgeous and the park was well-maintained.  It was a wonderful adventure and we'll definitely go back!


  1. What a fun adventure. Your sunset pictures are more than lovely. Now about the clams. Are they that plentiful all year round? Do they have clam bakes right on the sand as they do "back east?" I would not even be able to touch the things, much as I would like to, as I am deathly, deathly allergic to all creatures shelled!!!

    1. Thank you for your compliments on my pics! Apparently you only dig clams in months that have an R in, not in the summer. No one cooked on the beach - I'm not sure you're allowed to anymore. It was a lot of fun looking for the little breather-holes that indicated a clam underneath since I was only pointing and hubby was doing all the hard work of digging!

  2. A pleasant account Hilly. So nice to get away from it all in the wintertime. For me picture number 11 was the best with the sunset seabird reflected in the sands.

  3. Thanks for the compliment on the pic. My camera is just a cheap one, but I do love to take pictures with it. So much more enjoyable nowadays when you can take a bazillion pics and then just save the ones you want. I remember the days when we would have just a couple rolls of film, be ever so cautious not to use them foolishly and then find out they were crummy pictures anyhow, lol!

  4. This makes me wish I was there to watch your groom enjoy clamming and watch you try a clam.
    Wonderful pictures!
    Now you can get back to your daily chores refreshed.