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Herring Nights


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Joe Upton's first fishing job was in the dreary north Chilean town of Iquique in 1964, fishing for anchovy. After a few months he got a position in a Chilean tuna seiner, and later headed to Alaska to participate in the Bering Sea king crab fishery. Then came four years in the Alaskan salmon fishery aboard a 32-foot gillnetter, during which time he wrote Alaska Blues (1979, reissued 2008), an award-winning saga of commercial fishing. In 1976 Upton moved to Maine and bought the Amaretto, a 60-year-old 71-foot sardine carrier. Joe now divides his time between Bainbridge Island, Washington, and Vinalhaven Island, Maine, where he berthed the Amaretto four decades ago.

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