The Sea Forager’s Guide to the Northern California Coast

“The definitive guide to foraging the Northern Californian coast.”—Andrew Zimmern

Winner the 2017 NCIBA Book of the Year Award (Regional Interest). In The Sea Forager’s Guide to the Northern California Coast, Kirk Lombard combines a startling depth of knowledge with wry humor and colorful storytelling to guide readers’ quests to hook fish, dig clams, and pick seaweed for themselves. Leighton Kelly’s stunning, occasionally idiosyncratic illustrations complement practical instructions for gathering a variety of fish and seafood and delicious recipes for what to do with each catch. Lombard, a former staff member at the state Department of Fish and Game and founder of the foraging tour company/seafood delivery service Sea Forager Seafood, insists that his readers follow all regulations and encourages sustainable practices above and beyond what the State of California requires. This quirky and useful how-to is sure to inspire an empowering epicurean adventure.


“Through wit, poetry, and anecdotes, Lombard makes the case that the sincerest stewards of wild sea creatures are often those who intend to have them for dinner.”—Alastair Bland, NPR


“An unusual tome: part guide to urban fishery, part poetic ramble, part collection of anecdotes, part recipe book, it advocates for an ethical, considered approach to fishing the waterways of the Northern California coast.”—Eillie Anzilotti, CityLab


“Really, the book is for anyone who loves the ocean because you can open it to almost any passage and learn and laugh.”—Tara Duggan, San Francisco Chronicle


“[Lombard's] direct, conversational writing style makes readers feel like they're learning the ropes from an old friend who tells it exactly as he sees it.”—Kristine Wong, Civil Eats


“A helpful reference for fisherfolk, cooks, coastal explorers, and anyone interested in our local marine environment.” —Kristina Sepetys, Edible East Bay


“Lombard is a divinely inspired whack job—think Frank Zappa meets Aldo Leopold. If you have ever considered the idea of gathering something good to eat from the beach or need this book.”—Bill Heavey, editor-at-large, Field & Stream


“The author's entertaining writing is second only to his immense knowledge for near-shore fisheries.... An absolute must-have.”—Kevin Smith, North Coast Journal


“Lombard is a master of the nearshore environment, knowledgeable (and hilarious). This is, simply put, the best book on this subject ever written.”—Hank Shaw, James Beard Award–winning author, Hunter Angler Gardener Cookbook


“The definitive guide to foraging the Northern Californian coast. Kirk has created an ecosystem that allows us to be sustainable citizens and, more importantly, sustainable eaters.”—Andrew Zimmern, James Beard Award–winning television host, Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern

About the Author and Illustrator

Kirk Lombard

Kirk Lombard lives in Moss Beach, California, with his fishwife Camilla Lombard and their two kids, Django and Penelope. Kirk writes, fishes, sings a skull-cracking baritone, dabbles in papier-mâché sculpture, plays tuba for the SF-based band Rube Waddell, and, with Camilla, runs Sea Forager Seafood, a sustainable, subscription-based seafood delivery service based in San Francisco.