What a day it was, absolutely unbelievable and with wind to sail, sail we did off the entrance to Blackney Passage where orcas, the A30’s and A42’s were foraging in the flooding current along with a humpback whale, pacific white-sided dolphins, dall’s porpoises and a myriad of sea birds, all of them feeding upon the smorgasbord of food (herring and salmon species among them) entering Johnstone Strait in the swirling tide-rip. We had seen two humpback whales at a distance in Weynton Passage on our way east in the Strait and so it was fabulous to see the high blow of one feeding at Cracroft Point well ahead of our arriving there. We could also see orcas surfacing with dolphins and porpoises who were darting back and forth. The energy in Blackney Passage was intense and while the orcas were taking long dives, likely because of the presence of the dolphins, it was wonderful sailing quietly back and forth watching and listening with amazement the orchestrated sights and sounds of nature that surrounded us this morning in Blackney Passage. We observed a lull where the A30’s stalled, coming together they began moving towards Blackfish Sound at the bottom of Little Hanson Island while the A42’s who had foraged further west came by us, and followed close along the shoreline at the bottom of Hanson Island choosing a different waterway into Blackfish Sound. We travelled back along Hanson Island in Johnstone Strait and turning into Weyton Passage we immediately sighted three humpback whales in close proximity to each other and two more further out in Johnstone Strait while looking out into Weynton Passage we could see several more surfacing, diving and fluking! We were speechless when three whales suddenly came together nearby and began to feed intensely where lunge feeding and trap feeding and tail lobbing behaviour was observed. It was simply the best with absolutely superb viewing! Words cannot describe just how elated we all felt at experiencing nature as we did today. It was rejuvenating and uplifting for all of us, it awakened our senses and brought us close to the pulse of nature and life itself! We also saw today: harbour seals, rhinoceros auklets, common murres, red-necked phalaropes, fork-tailed storm petrels, bald eagles and gull species.
Of special interest today was the presence of some returning guests ~ Phyllis who first came out with us in 1988 and Donna and Ken in 1991 and 2013. We are greatly honoured and sincerely thank them for seeking us out to share yet another day on their return to this precious place on earth.
Today’s penned comments: ” The trip was magnificent! Humpback whales, seals, porpoises, dolphins and of course the wonderful orcas! The hosts were very engaging and knowledgeable. What a trip!” ~ Sue & Doug, USA
“Obviously the wildlife was an amazing sight, but so was your enthusiasm. Thanks for having us.” ~ Nadja & Arian, Switzerland
“Awesome sail! Breaching, trapping humpbacks and hunting for salmon orcas, awesome!” ~ Phyllis & Rita, USA
“Trip of a lifetime. First sailboat ride, First humpback whales, orcas, ‘wild’ that is. Thanks, Thanks.” ~ Barb, BC
“I do not think there is one ‘word’ that can describe todays whale watching tour. ‘Plethora’ of words may be such as amazing, incredible, beautiful, excellent, superb and more. There were so many marine mammals all in one eddie/current. Orcas, humpback whales, dolphins and porpoises foraging together. The dolphins were breaching and playing, it was terrific. Later, after the muffins stuffed with fresh fruit we travelled to where there were four humpbacks foraging. We witnessed lunge feeding, tail lobbing and it was spectacular. Thank you so much Maureen and David for an incredible whale watching tour. We even saw baby seals on our way home. Marvellous! Thank you again. ” ~ Robin, BC
“Enjoyment beyond expression. No 1 experience of our lives to see orcas. Ranks above 1/2 million sandhill cranes migrating. Loved your trip.” ~ Donna & Ken, Stoney Plain, Canada