The Razor Clam Experiment

As spring approaches fast we better clear our backlog of winter adventures - although, would anybody really notice if we wear winter clothes in June in a story located in Scotland? Anyway - back to the story ... about trying to catch some razor clams in February!

The Razor Clam Experiment

With Corwin's taste for fish & seafood rapidly developing over the last few months exploring more locally caught and foraged food was high on our agenda and he had been asking forever how to get razor clams and clams in general.

So on a clear but cold Sunday afternoon with a low spring tide being mid-afternoon we finally decided to have a go. We had seen the previous day, driving along Kirkaig beach, that the tide was really impressive so the perfect conditions for our project.

We left home with a bucket, but needed to swing by a local shop on the way to pick up a bag of salt - 'salting out' razor clams is one of the methods we can use. Our hopes were high after watching a few youtube videos where people got loads of razor clams that way on an English beach, although we did caution Corwin to not get too excited as things don't always go to plan.

It was a truly stunning winter day - blue sky - white clouds - a lovely glistening beach - all we needed was clam success. Off we went with our equipment on the lookout for those special holes that tell you that there is a clam. What we only read much later was that when embarking on such a project you really need to tread carefully. Thundering around doesn't help and dogs especially thundering around is not helpful at all.

So in hindsight no surprise that we saw very few of those holes. Also not having done this before we weren't quite sure how those holes should look like exactly. We first merrily and then desperately poured salt in hole after hole and - NOTHING! Whilst we had not really expected lots of clams we had banked on getting at least some. How could it have been so easy for all those other people and so hard for us?

Corwin is not easily deterred but at the same time can lack patience so it was no surprise that after a while he changed plan and grabbed the big fork to take it upon himself to dig for 'just clams'.

And would you believe it - he did it! Whilst we were pretty blind to spotting anything he unearthed several in rapid succession. We decided after five to stop the collecting as we had not tried them before and didn't want to take too many on our first go.

Which turned out to be a good decision as before getting any more we really need to master the art of getting the sand and grit out of them first before cooking them. So there will definitely be a return attempt - and we have not given up on the razor clams either. it's all about practice ....

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About the Author

Monika Strell

Monika Strell

About Me & Mine

Monika (an Austrian in Scotland), Stewart (a true Highlander) and Corwin (8), plus 2 dogs and 5 cats.  We live on a woodland croft in the parish of Assynt, in the far North West Highlands of Scotland.

Favourite place in the world:

Home - we are lucky to have mountains and beaches on our doorstep and Scotland generally; but we also love the mountains in my native Austria and have a soft spot for California, where we spent our honeymoon.

Favourite things to do outdoors:

Explovering (our personal term for exploring and discovering) mountains, lochs and beaches, camping, foraging, star gazing, Geocaching, developing our already wonderful woodlands into a magic place to share with family, friends and neighbours and fishing.

Comments (1)

  • Jay Greengrass

    Jay Greengrass

    24 April 2017 at 18:42 | #

    Oh dear! I have to say that we were monumentally unsuccessful in all our bids to catch razor clams. We tried table salt, salty water in squeezy bottles, and big forks. We never caught a single one (though Jon cut his hands having one or 2 slide out his grip and back into the beach). So bravo Corwin, well done! I've noted your tip about not stamping around and I'm thinking I might be up for one more, last attempt. One day. Maybe. Perhaps... I hope to hear that you've caught loads next time!


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