The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) approved the evening dig at Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis and Mocrocks beaches after marine toxin tests showed that the clams on those beaches are safe to eat.
Evening low tides during the dig will be at 4:40 p.m. Dec. 22 and at 5:29 p.m. on Dec. 23. No digging will be allowed at any beach before noon.
Dan Ayres, WDFW coastal shellfish manager, recommends that diggers hit the beach one to two hours before evening low tide for best results.
"We had a good turnout for the dig earlier this month, and we're expecting the same for the upcoming dig," Ayres said. "The tides won't be low enough for a New Year's dig this year, but they're providing some good digging opportunities this month."
Kalaloch Beach will remain closed until April, due to a low abundance of razor clams. The National Park Service, which manages that beach in cooperation with WDFW, has announced plans to open Kalaloch for a razor clam dig April 7-9.
Ayres said WDFW will announce tentative openings for early 2012 at the other four beaches in early January.
Under state law, diggers can take 15 razor clams per day, and are required to keep the first 15 they dig. Each digger's clams must be kept in a separate container.
All diggers age 15 or older must have an applicable 2011-12 fishing license to harvest razor clams on any beach. Licensing options range from a three-day razor clam license to an annual combination fishing license, which can be purchased on WDFW's website (https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov) and from license vendors around the state.
Dan Ayres, WDFW, (360) 249-4628