|My dad is a veteran digger. Look at that form!|
Let it be said, fresh clams are remarkable and the opportunity to dig your own is equally important. I admit, the tides aren't always convenient and it can be time consuming, but, I believe, well worth it. My mom's brother, on the other hand, loves to dig clams, but he now opts to have Central Market call him when they have a supply. His north of Seattle location isn't quite convenient enough for him to make the 3+ hour drive and I totally get that.
For me, I like to get my hands dirty. I like to feel the tug-of-war that gets started between me and the clam. I like the physical aggressiveness that comes from digging your own. When you first see that bubble in the sand and immediately fight for what's yours. You mightily dig your shovel in wanting to win the prize when it emerges from below. Those suckers can dig fast and, unfortunately, at times, faster than you. This cat-and-mouse kind of game gets you coming back for more. Well, that and the fact they are delicious to eat.
Are you wondering if I am even being serious? But, yes, I'm here to tell you - it is awesome. I love digging clams and especially more pleasing, I enjoy spending that time with my mom and dad. The last time we went was a mid-afternoon dig, so we all piled in the car - early, as my dad likes it - to head down from their Mason County home. The drive is relaxing as we roll by places that bring me back to my childhood. They tell me stories along the way and we enjoy the scenery of the Evergreens and the old, small towns. When we got to the beach at Ocean City, the sun was peeking out through the dark, coastal clouds. It wasn't raining, or too cold, and the air smelled fresh. It was simply beautiful. And after we dug, we all stood there for awhile looking on in amazement, feeling refreshed from the physical exertion.
|Here I am. Yes, that's me, polka dot boots and all.|
(Using a clam gun).
|My beloved license.|
|Elias and my mom hoping for a clam.|
|We have a side tracker here.|
|Wrapping up the dig with our limit. We rock!|
|Best part of the day - a beer!|
Once you return home with your clams, there are important tips when cleaning clams. Below is a step-by-step photo guide on how to do this without affecting the clams you dig.