Digging for clams is easy and fun—kinda like fishing, but without all that waiting. Here are the top road-accessible clam havens south of Anchorage:
- Anchor Point (Mile 160)
- Clam Gulch (Mile 117.5)
- Ninilchik Village (Mile 135.6)
- Deep Creek (137.3)
When To Go
Anytime, though the best season is from April through September. Taste peaks in early summer.
On any day, you want low tide—the wet sand where the clams have burrowed.
What you Need
- A Permit. Buy one for about $20 at tackle shops or grocery stores.
- Something to Dig With. Ether a narrow clam shovel, found in hardware stores, or a "clam gun" or "tube," which is typically 4 inches in diameter, with a handle and a small air vent.
- Bucket. Five gallons at most. Your daily limit is 60 clams. (Going over can incur a $100 fine, plus $2 per clam.)
- Clothes. Think messy. Serious clam diggers wear hip waders, but people on the beaches wear anything from sneakers, galoshes to flip-flops. It gets chilly, so at least wear your rain gear.
Look for a dimple in the sand, and start shoveling a few inches away. When you can see the clam, use your hands.
If you’re using a clam tube, push the tube down over the dimple with a rocking motion. Block the vent with your fingers and the tube sucks up both sand and clam.
Important: Don’t break the clam shell! Otherwise, you’ll learn why it’s called a “razor” clam. Broken clams count toward your 60, too.
Also, put your little piles of sand back into the holes, to avoid inundating other burrowed animals.
Ready to Eat?
Use your knife to removes its gills, the black tips of its neck and its digging "foot." Watch this video on cleaning razor clams.
Clams only stay fresh on ice for a day or two— good reminder not to fulfill that limit of 60. Frying up a few over the campfire may be all you need.
For more information, call the Department of Fish and Game at (907) 262-9368.