Camping at Clam Gulch State Recreation Area
Location and Description
Clam Gulch State Recreation Area is located on the Kenai Peninsula of Alaska, United States. It is situated about 25 miles southwest of Kenai and 10 miles south of Ninilchik on the Sterling Highway. The park extends along the shores of Cook Inlet and offers a panoramic view of the Aleutian Range and the volcanic peaks of Mount Iliamna and Mount Redoubt.
Clamming: The area is best known for its abundant razor clam beds, which attract visitors during the low tides from May to September. Clamming is subject to Alaska Department of Fish and Game regulations, and it's important for visitors to check the current rules and regulations, as well as any health advisories related to shellfish harvesting.
Camping: Clam Gulch State Recreation Area offers camping with over 100 campsites, including walk-in tent sites and RV spots. Facilities may include restrooms, picnic tables, and fire pits. Campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Fishing and Wildlife Viewing: In addition to clamming, the area is suitable for fishing, with salmon runs in nearby streams. Bird watching and wildlife viewing are also popular, as moose, bald eagles, and an array of shorebirds can be observed in the park.
Hiking and Beachcombing: Visitors can hike the local trails or spend time beachcombing along the shores of Cook Inlet.
Facilities and Services
Day-Use Facilities: A day-use area is usually available with picnic sites and restrooms. Parking lots are provided for day visitors.
Camping Facilities: Campsites offer basic amenities such as picnic tables, fire pits, and latrines. There are no hookups for RVs, so visitors should be prepared for dry camping.
Regulations and Safety
Permits: A permit may be required for clamming, which can be obtained from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
Tide Safety: Visitors should be aware of the tides when clamming or exploring beaches. The tides in Cook Inlet can be very extreme, and it's easy to get caught by an incoming tide if not paying attention.
Weather: The weather can be unpredictable, and it is advisable to bring clothing suitable for rain, wind, and possibly cold temperatures, even in summer.
Wildlife Interactions: Keep a safe distance from wildlife, store food securely, and do not feed animals.
Leave No Trace: As with any natural area, visitors should adhere to the principles of Leave No Trace, packing out all trash and leaving the area as they found it.
Reservations and Contact Information
For the most current information, regulations, and any changes to reservations or facility availability, it is best to contact the managing agency directly before planning your visit. The Alaska Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation can provide the latest updates and any advisories or restrictions for the Clam Gulch State Recreation Area.