Nature: May 2005 Archives

Kalaloch Beach

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Four of us and a dog set off for the Olympic coastline on Saturday later than planned AM. By all accounts, our karma tanks were overflowing with goodness through the weekend. The rain we all feared only came down on the drive there, some sprinkles while we were snoozing, and again on the drive home. And it was all butter in between.

We pulled into Kalaloch to find that the RV crowd had already squatted on all the ocean view sites (note: RV camps aren't a preferred destination but seemed appropriate this go). After making some laps around the campground, we settled on a quiet site across the way from an ecentric fellow, who possibly calls this campground home. He sent us home with a pamphlet of his opinions on redheads and why the African nation of Chad should be the capital of the world (one reason is easy space travel). C'est la vie.

Anyway, it was off to Ruby Beach for amongst other things, kite flying. I'd never flown a kite, but it was surpringly entertaining. And the weather again couldn't have been any more timely.

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Last time we were on the Olympic Coast, we saw nothing but dead marine life. Opposite scenario this go with some sweet tide pools--here are some starfish. Any wannabe marine biologists know what this is?

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After a few hours on the beach and an easy hike to the world's largest western red cedar, we did dinner old school Boy Scouts style with foil packs on the campfire. The lesson for next time is to bring salt/pepper shakers when car camping. Then after a few more hours of discussing marshmallow roasting techniques, it was bedtime. Come sunrise, we planned to be razor digging.

6:17 am on Sunday would have been peak digging time, but I don't think anyone set an alarm clock. We made it out there by 8:30, I believe. One old guy who was on his way out told me "you're late." At this point, we had a nice section of the beach all to ourselves.

While Zizou was running around chewing on washed up dungeness crabs, we were on the prowl for tiny holes like this. In retrospect, I should have set a penny next to the hole for scale, so you'll have to take my word that it's a rather tiny lil' guy. So when we found a little hole or dimple like that, we'd jam the pvc clam gun into the sand to find the razor clam within.

The first ten minutes was slow-going and a bit discouraging. I was beginning to feel bad that I dragged people out in the morning for this nonsense. Then in an hours time, we bagged 30 clams with at least a 90% success rate on holes dug:clams being in said dug hole. Basically, the moral of the story is to go ahead and sleep in. Late birds get the worms too, and with much more elbow room, in the process.

Our request for a late checkout was denied, so we had to be out of camp by 11:00am. But we still managed to get down a hungry man's breakfast of eggs, hash browns, sausage, and juice boxes before pulling out at 11:07am. It was all business driving home and we were back in Seattle at 2:36pm.

After some indoor soccer at 5:00pm, it was razor clam chowda time. With bacon/bacon fat, onions, celery, potatoes, half & half, butter, and clams as the ingredients, how can you go wrong? I'll be eating said chowder 3 meals/day for the next week. Yummy.

For my friends, the gallery has been updated with more pics from the weekend.