If you get a chance to visit Northern Oregon coastline, be sure to stop at Seaside beach. Oregon has the most beautiful beaches.
Learn to dig Razor Clams with a Clam Gun
Clatsop Beach near Seaside Oregon is 18 miles long and accounts for 95 percent of the harvesting of razor clams on the Oregon Coast. The best time to dig for razor clams is during a minus tide. Plan on being there 2 hours prior to the low tide which can be found on any local tidal chart.
There are three major kind of “shows” to look for while Razor Clamming
- Dimple: A depression in the sand
- Doughnut: Has raised sides
- Keyhole: Is usually in drier sand areas and is shaped like an “hour-glass” or is a hole with very distinct sides
Razor Clamming Technique
Stomping your feet or hitting the ground with a pole are ways to get the clams to produce a show. We used the stomping technique in this video. You may think you look funny doing this but the results will show for themselves. We had several families come up to us and say, “you look like you know what you’re doing, can you help us?” It’s amazing what you can learn on the internet.
Razor Clam Limits
The limit is 15 razor clams per day in the Washington and Oregon States. We limited out in less than 30 minutes per day during our four days in Seaside, even though we didn’t have a minus tide.
Best Place to Park
We parked at the end of 12th avenue in the public parking lot near the boardwalk. It’s a short 5 minute walk to the razor clam beds. You can use a shovel but the easiest way to dig for razor clams is to use a clam gun.
Best Razor Clam Gun
The best clam gun on the market is called the Clamhawk and can be purchased at Dennis’s Company in Long Beach Washington or Englund Marine & Industrial Supply in Astoria Oregon. The Clamhawk is a 5” stainless steel clam gun and will last a lifetime.
Clean Razor Clams the Easy Way
- Place the razor clam in boiling water for a few second or until the clam opens
- Immediately submerge the clam in ice cold water to stop the cooking process
- Use a pair of scissors to cut the tip of the neck off then cut along the zipper and thru the first siphon
- Cut the second siphon to open the razor clam
- Remove the gills and turn the clam over to cut off the stomach
- Wash away the black matter
- Open the digger with a pair of scissors and butterfly it with a knife
Some people remove the digger when cleaning but I prefer to keep the clam with the digger and body together. Razor clam cleaning is very easy and will take a few minutes to complete. Take your time.
How to Fry Razor Clams Perfectly
Dip the clams in the egg wash and coat them with any fish fry mix. We tried “Slap Ya Mama” and “Louisiana” fish fry. I preferred “Slap Ya Mama”. You can add extra heat by adding 1/2 teaspoon of Slap Ya Mama Hot Cajun Seasoning to any fish fry mixture. Once the oil is hot enough, fry the razor clams for about 1 1/2 minutes or until golden brown on each side.
Enjoy them with a creamy clam dip as an appetizer or on a Po’ boy bun. No matter how you eat them, you will be experiencing the best the west coast has to offer.