|Netarts Bays, Or. – July, 5,6
We decided that we had not had enough clamming so we again headed out to play in the mud.
The tides were really good for clamming as the low tides were –2 feet or so. The more negative the low tide, the better exposed the clam beds become. The biggest tidal swings are 6-7 ft. around here and occur during a new moon and a full moon. An interesting phenomenon around here is that in each town you get the local version of tide tables. We probably have 5 or 6 now.
We only had to drive about a half a mile to get to a good clamming spot. This time we were joined by about 500 of our closest friends.
It was unbelievable how many people were out in the mud this day. It started drizzling which made it a lot colder and muddier. The girls were not happy with this development and headed back to the warmth of the truck. The boys stayed out a little longer and got their limit of gaper and butter clams. An extra challenge this time was getting back to shore as the incoming tide creates a channel between the flat and shore. We got back in time as the channel was only knee deep. It was straight to the shower today as we were all mud puppies.
Later we headed into Tillamook to check out the Tillamook cheese factory. So did a lot of other people probably due to the rainy weather. The cheese and ice cream were good. The kids didn’t appreciate the prevailing manure smell from all of the dairy farms in the area though.
The next day only Bruce and Erik were up for clamming. They got a late start but the tide was still good. The girls dropped them off and headed to the beach. Bruce promised it would only take them 45 minutes. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha! Erik finally found some high concentrations of butter clams but then got carried away digging deep for the elusive gapers.
They finally decided they needed to head in as the tide was coming in fast. Bruce had to carry Erik over one spot that was waste deep but fortunately the sun had come out, the water was a tolerable temperature and Bruce was wearing his swimming suit for some reason. How fortuitous. No the girls weren’t happy that they had to wait. We of course, met the local fish and game gal who was really nice.
That afternoon we did some exploring up the coast. We went to Cape Meare and toured the light house as well as check out the Octopus tree.
The Octopus tree is a Sitka Spruce which has 6 or so limbs which have grown straight up and are as big as the trunk. We also met a couple from Corpus Christi while viewing the tree. We spent a while ogling for birds on the offshore rocks and cliffs using our spotting scope.
We saw a lot of stuff but no Puffins. We also discovered the source of the name of Three Arch rocks as the Cape Meare vantage point provides a view of the arches.
We also hiked to the alleged worlds largest Sitka Spruce.
All the kids could talk about though was that Alan and Carol were going to come over from inland to camp next to us that night so we headed back to camp.