Grant’s Getaways: Surf Perch Fishing and Clamming

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Originally Published on Jun 9, 2013

It’s spring on the Oregon Coast and adventure waits at every turn; when the tide goes out the dinner table is set for thousands who gather to dig razor clams at Gearhart Beach in Oregon’s Clatsop County.  The best time to go is a couple of hours before the low tide — and the lower the tide the better, so check an Oregon tide table for the best dates and times. If you come, keep this in mind: when the clam tide ebbs and turns to flood there’s another fishing sport that takes over on the beach, and it’s worth checking out too.

Brad Fresh is a longtime surf angler and he wears neoprene waders to keep out the bone chilling cold water — plus, he always wears an inflatable life vest too. “It’s not that I’m a bad swimmer, I’m actually pretty good, but if I fill these waders up with water — well, I wouldn’t stand much of a chance. The water is so cold.”

Fresh, his partner Chong Chang and their friend Jim Milanowski are dedicated surf fishermen who like to “prospect” along the beaches. They cast, then move and then cast some more, again and again until they find eager biters among the ever-moving schools of pink fin perch.

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