National Geographic : 1954 Feb
"+Laundry Flutters from Balconies ofOndirroa's Lofty Tenements OndArroa, afishing town of5,000 people, be comes anisland athigh. tide. Like other com munities along Spain's north shore, theport shelters sardine and tuna fishing fleets. Artists instinctively love the town. Here anoldRoman-style bridge connects quays. Acemetery chapel crowns thehillover looking theharbor. Ondays when thefishing fleet dares notven ture outtosea,Ondarroa's crews repair their craft. Often they gather indockside taverns to play cards, sing, and dance. Basques popularized whaling among Euro peans; thefirst English whalers intheArctic hired aboat's crew ofthese experts for thediffi cult jobofharpooning. The Bay ofBiscay afforded rich whaling waters until two centuries ago, when thelocal whales (Eubalaena glacialis) disappeared because of overfishing. During those early times scores of fishermen drowned every year. Violent storms remain athreat tofishermen despite sturdier boats. 165 Kodachromes hyJustin Locke Hardy Oarsmen Compete Every year Basque villages hold a rowing regatta at San Sebastian (page 178). Half a dozen long boats, each with a crew of 14 men, sweep 1/2 miles out to sea and return in a test of en durance (pages 166 and 167). Spec tators line beaches, ride pursuing launches, and climb the castle-crowned promontory.