Sunshine and zodiac tours watching transient Orcas - what a perfect start to this Sunday!
July 1, 2011
With the clouds clearing, we set out for another Orca Spirit adventure! Lately our resident pods have been spending a lot of time near the San Juan Islands, but today we were able to head out in a different direction! About 20 minutes past Ogden Point we were lucky enough to stumble across J-pod! They had travelled quite a distance since last night where we had seen them at San Juan Island. The pod was in a resting pattern, but what a resting pattern it was! Ten to fifteen whales were tightly swimming alongside one another, taking breaths in unison. We were able to spot Blackberry, a large male born in 1991. After a while of viewing we noticed another group of whales moving towards the pod we were watching, and we wondered whether it was K or L pod coming to greet J-pod. It turned out to be other members of J-pod who had got ahead and turned back under the direction of Granny (J-2), to join up with the rest. With lots of time left we headed south into the center of the Juan de Fuca Strait in hopes of spotting a humpback whale that has been in the area this past week. Unfortunately after scanning for a few minutes we were unable to spot it so we continued on to the beautiful Race Rocks area. Here we were lucky to find a male Northern Elephant Seal molting out of the water along the rocks and a female not far swimming in the shallow water. These animals only ever come out of the water to breed and to molt (shed their coat). So it was a pretty unique sighting! What a wonderful way to enjoy the morning on Canada's Birthday!!