The recovery of the Eastern Pacific gray whale from the brink of extinction is the single greatest turnaround of a marine mammal population, and the whale's myriad connections to human cultural conflicts are no less impressive in their scope. In New Times' special project "Shades of Gray," reporters from several of our papers have traveled from Siberia to Mexico to tell the complex tale of a creature whose annual migration — at 12,000 miles round trip, the longest by any mammal — has become a trek through the competing interests of Indians, scientists, environmentalists and local residents. Here, writer John Dougherty goes into the heart of a Native American tribe in Washington state to find out how and why it has resurrected its cultural heritage of whaling, an action that has enrag... More >>>
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A full-scale, red-cedar plank long house stands at the entrance to the Makah Cultural and Research Center in Neah Bay, Washington.