History

THE RAY’S RIVER DORIES LEGACY.

Since 1975.

Our founder, Ray Heater, grew up on the Oregon Coast. His family had been involved in the wood products industry since the turn of the century. As an avid angler, Ray cut his teeth boating coastal rivers since the 1950’s and it is that first-hand experience that contributed to the functionality and form of our current boat models. Today, Ray is happily retired in Bend, Oregon.

Ray met Cyrus Happy in the late 1980’s when Cy was a Deshutes River guide and a friendship was formed. Cyrus grew up on the lakes around Puget Sound with boating in his blood. Prior to guiding, Cy had been building and repairing acoustic instruments and brought his unique woodworking skill to boat construction. Cy and Ray officially teamed up in 1988, when Cy decided that life was too short to spend any more river time in anything but a wood boat.

The combination of their shared passion for creating the ultimate river experience is what lead to the models, construction, and design of our boat selection today.

David Hayes grew up in Portland where his love of fishing rivers was born at an early age. Starting at age 6, Dave’s father often took him steelhead and salmon fishing throughout Oregon and SW Washington. For the past 12 years, Dave operated a home construction business where his focus and specialization was finished carpentry.

Today, Cy and Dave work together to foster the legacy of expert craftsmanship that Ray Heater started in 1975. That legacy is the merging of function and form that has become a signature of Ray’s River Dories boats.