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Originally published October 9, 2013 at 5:36 PM | Page modified October 9, 2013 at 6:34 PM

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Razor clam digging off to a good start

Returns are high for razor clams, and the competition is light


Seattle Times staff reporter

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Razor clam fans will dig this news flash.

“We had really good digging this past weekend on all the beaches, but the crowds were light and that just means we’ll have plenty more clams to dig later on,” said Dan Ayres, the head state Fish and Wildlife coastal shellfish manager.

A total of 12,232 diggers turned out last Friday to Sunday with 313,045 clams dug. At Long Beach, diggers averaged 14.7 clams per person (the first 15 dug regardless of size or condition is a daily limit); Twin Harbors was 14.4; Copalis was 14.9; and Mocrocks was 15.0.

By Monday, the surf was rough and success dropped off slightly at Long Beach, Twin Harbors and Mocrocks. By Tuesday, virtually everyone took home a limit of razor clams from Twin Harbors, which was the only beach open.

“Just about all the clams we saw were nice size, although at places like Mocrocks there are a lot of smaller clams and people who are selective will do much better,” Ayres said.

This comes on the heels of what was one of the earliest starts to the fall season, which occurred Sept. 19-23 at Twin Harbors. A total of 8,900 diggers turned out for the five days, averaging 14.3 clams per person.

Additional tentative digs are Oct. 17 at Twin Harbors; Oct. 18-19 at Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks; Oct. 20 at Long Beach, Twin Harbors and Mocrocks; Oct. 21 at Twin Harbors and Mocrocks; and Oct. 22 at Twin Harbors.

State shellfish managers are finalizing more digs for the remainder of the year into December, and those will likely be on an every-other-week schedule.

Fishing Report
Location Comment
Marine areasThe Sekiu Salmon Derby is this weekend, and fishing has been decent for mostly coho and a few chinook. Sekiu and Port Angeles are open through Oct. 31. Fair to good in the bubble fishery off La Push for kings and coho, which is open through Sunday. Fair for coho at Port Angeles, and east and west sides of Whidbey Island and Puget Sound. Slowed down for coho off the west side beaches of Whidbey Island and Deception Pass at North Beach. Fair to good for chinook and coho in San Juan Islands. Westport Boat Basin Salmon Derby is open through Oct. 31. Grays Harbor is open for coho, but hit and miss in south channel off the Johns River mouth. Most of Puget Sound is open for Dungeness crab fishing through Dec. 31.
Biting: YesRating: 3 stars
Statewide riversThis fall has been one of the best river coho fisheries seen in a long time in the Snohomish, from the Everett tidewater up to the town of Snohomish, and Skykomish. Fair for late summer steelhead at Reiter Ponds in the Skykomish. Fair to good for coho in Cascade, Stillaguamish and Skagit. Good for a mix of salmon in the Humptulips, Clearwater, Queets, Wynoochee, Quinault, Lower Hoh, Bogachiel and Sol Duc, but slow in the Chehalis. Upper Columbia at Hanford Reach has been decent for kings. Puyallup from 11th Street Bridge up to City of Puyallup outfall structure across the river from the junction of Freeman Road and North Levee Road is closed Sunday to Wednesday, but open daily Oct. 17-Dec. 31. Upper Puyallup is open daily through Dec. 31. Slow to fair for chinook in Lower Columbia. Good bet for chinook and coho off mouth of Klickitat and Bonneville Pool. Fair in Cowlitz for chinook and coho. Good for chinook on Lewis North Fork, and in the mainstem for coho.
Biting: YesRating: 3 stars
Statewide lakesGood for trout in Morton, Meridian and Green in King County, and Silver in Snohomish County. Very good for perch in Lake Washington, and fair for coho off Yarrow Bay and Hunts Point. Jameson Lake is open for trout. The Potholes is good for perch, walleye, bass and trout. Blackman’s, Deer, Lone, Spanaway and Goodwin are worth a try for trout.
Biting: YesRating: 3 stars

Mark Yuasa: 206-464-8780 or myuasa@seattletimes.com



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