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Free Fishing, Crabbing, Clamming, Parking on Oregon Coast Coming Up

Published 11/22/21 at 4:32 AM PST
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Free Fishing, Crabbing, Clamming, Parking on Oregon Coast Coming Up

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(Oregon Coast) – All state parks will have free parking on Friday, November 26, and the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving will be free fishing day across the state as well.

On the Oregon coast, that translates to a handful of state parks that charge parking fees won't be doing so, and the weekend will mean not just free fishing but no license needed for crabbing or clamming.

Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) is inviting all Oregonians to walk off their Turkey Day dinner the day after, Friday, November 26. Generally known as “Green Friday,” it's become a tradition to some degree as OPRD partners with operations like REI to encourage people to get out there during the holidays – including the coast.

25 parks around Oregon have day-use parking fees, but on this day they will all be waived.

On the Oregon coast, those parks normally include Shore Acres at Coos Bay, Jessie M. Honeyman State Park at Florence, Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint just north of there, Cape Lookout State Park, Nehalem Bay State Park and Fort Stevens near Astoria. Ecola State Park at Cannon Beach is currently closed because part of the entrance road is washed out.

Crabbing in Charleston, courtesy Oregon's Adventure Coast

OPRD Director Lisa Sumption called it “an important acknowledgement that going for a walk or just being outdoors can relieve stress in a way that nothing else can.

“The outdoors provides everyone a place to escape pandemic and holiday stress,” she continued. “We are proud to partner with REI to promote this tradition, and offer Oregonians an alternative to the busiest shopping day of the year.”

The parking waiver applies from open to close that Friday at the 25 parks that charge a $5 daily parking fee.

Then, Friday and Saturday bring Free Fishing Days throughout Oregon, with some special aspects for the Oregon coast. It means you can fish, crab or clam for free – no license, tag or endorsement required. Some restrictions apply, as in all current closures, bag limits and other regulations still apply.

The program is managed by Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW), and it has some suggestions for fishing the southern Oregon coast.

Arago Boat Ramp not far from Coquille features a lot of smallmouth bass, cutthroat trout, steelhead, and striped bass. You'll also find boat launching facilities. Arizona Pond near Port Orford features much rainbow trout, but it's only open to youth under 17 years old. Bastendorff Beach and the South Jetty at Charleston is good for surfperch and rockfish as well as razor clamming. There are more at the ODFW website.

For crabbing, Newport's Yaquina Bay can be excellent this time of year, along with Bandon. Razor clamming is hot from Seaside through to Warrenton.

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