Last day in Pacific City - for now

A dory is a flat-bottomed boat, with sides and bottom planked lengthwise and with no keel structure other than the bottom planking
— John Gardner

We spent our last day in Pacific City watching the surfers and Dory boats at Cape Kiwanda. I had left early in the morning to head to the beach by myself. A short half mile down the road I stopped for a coffee and a Marionberry muffin for Bob for later and arrived at the beach to see 11 boat trailers lined up on the shore, a good sign I thought that someone would be landing at a later point during the morning. The Dory boats land and take off from the shoreline and while we had spent time at the museum reading up on their history, I had yet to see them in action. I planned on staying until I did.


It was the “super” low tide of the day so I wandered over to the tide-pools and explored around for awhile, keeping a keen eye out to sea just in case any of the boats returned. It was about an hour later that I noticed the beach was filling up quickly with surfers. When I had arrived there were maybe two or three in the water. Now there were twenty or so and the “drive on” beach was starting to look like a parking lot. Just as I turned to walk back towards the Jeep I spotted a Dory coming in at full speed towards shore. There is only a small area of the shoreline where they land, not far from where all the surfers were gathering. Full throttle the boat hit the shore and skidded up onto the beach, one person jumping out to grab and hold onto the boat while another ran to get the truck/trailer to pull the boat out of the water. It was a THRILL to watch!

I stopped and watched as they got the boat pulled out and their catch stored, 45 Dungeness crabs and 12 Ling cod. Chatted a bit with the owner of the boat and he told me he was going back out later in the day with another group if the weather held out.


As I walked back to the Jeep I watched as more and more surfers were arriving to check out the waves. Calling out to each other and pointing at the breaks coming in - you could tell that they were excited to see some good surf. I decided to call Bob and see if he wanted to come down and watch with me. Sometimes I am not sure if the enjoyment of watching others in Mother Ocean outranks the sadness of not being in the water himself. Bob spent many years surfing the waves in Florida, South Carolina and Hawaii and I know he misses it. But I let him make that call, and he decided to join me. Ran back to camp and grabbed him and we came back and set up on the beach with our chairs and of course the muffin I had purchased earlier. Over the course of the next few hours we watched the surf, got to see another boat land and the same one from the early morning take off. It was a great way to enjoy our last day in Pacific City. This area has so much to offer. Hiking, rock hounding, beach-combing and beautiful scenery. I know we will return.