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Linfield Fall 2012

Telling the dory story It’s 5 a.m. on a cool July morning. The beach is dark, but near the surf, two men slide from their truck and pull on waders. Within minutes, they’ve launched their dory from the beach and are heading out to sea where Haystack Rock retreats behind them. On the open ocean, the 20-foot craft is tossed about, but resilient – much like the anglers at the helm. When Linfield College students and professors set out fishing community but remains connected to its culture. the fish. to from away moved he Pacific City most weekends to his childhood friends, ofdrywaller who returnsLike many they fishermen. of Pacific City Dory Fleet, group a the story of the telltofound more than They found a way of life. On this day, he sits at his parents’ kitchen table with For more than a century, anglers have pushed their boats longtime friend Jerry Wenzinger. The two have fished together into the ocean from Pacific City, an unassuming coastal town of since grade school, most recently in Bush’s boat, the Cricket. 1,100 off Highway 101. Protected by Cape Kiwanda, the landscape They tell of sharks, and how their predatory scent permeates is ideal to launch the small, fl the wood of the boat, keeping other fish away. They touch on at-bottomed boats directly from the beach. In the 1960s and ’70s, that agility enabled the Pacific fishing regulations and changes to the industry. They talk of dory fleet to often bring in more salmon than any other fleet on family and fathers. “There’s always a seat in the boat for Dad,” the Oregon coast. Although major commercial fishing from the said Bush of his father, Robert, who instilled in him a love of the dories has given way to more recreational activity, the dory fleet ocean. When they’re done talking, they share fresh crab from the remains a central part of the community. morning’s catch with a group of Linfield students and faculty After four decades of ocean fishing, Richard Bush has reeled who just recorded their stories. in his share of fish stories. There was that time his dog put the Bush’s interview, and more than 80 others, are included in truck in gear while they launched the boat, backing the truck a two-year oral history project about the Pacific City dory fleet, and trailer into the ocean. Or the times salmon jumped from the “Launching Through the Surf: The Dory Fleet of Pacific City.” water and hit him in the face. Armed with cameras, video equipment, microphones, laptops “That’s how thick they used to be,” said Bush, a Portland and a healthy dose of curiosity, Linfield students and faculty Fall 2012 l i n f i e l d m a g a z i n e - 7


Linfield Fall 2012
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