September 30:

What a wonderful day we had for our last tour of the season! We could not have asked for anything more. There was an abundance of sightings it seemed in every direction we looked, beginning with a large blow being sighted off into the distance and well ahead of viewing the humpback whale that eventually showed itself. As we drew near, two breaches were observed. At the same time a second humpback whale was sighted and then a third, followed simultaneously by a glimpse of a single dorsal fin. What excitement and joy! The first orca that we sighted at a distance was later identified as A39 and suddenly a second smaller fin was seen, followed by several more dorsal fins. Until our sighting there had not been any reports of orcas in the area and yet there they were; the A30 matriline, foraging steadily in Blackfish Sound. The weather was glorious with wind conditions perfect for hoisting both the stay sail and the main. It was pure magic, moving quietly along, sailing with the whales as they foraged. Stellar sea lions were in the water swimming, one was viewed catching a salmon while others, with much splashing, were seen to be interacting with one of the humpback whales, rolling all over and around it. Where to look and in which direction to head after our wonderful encounter with the orcas! The humpback whales were magnificent, their dive sequence a graceful sight to behold. Traveling home via the island waterways with its sparkling kelp forests, numerous stellar sea lions and some harbour seals were observed hauled out, the sight and sound of the sea lions, their bodies glistening in the sunshine was an interesting sight to see. The final day in September: a season still showing great change and transition for all species, from high above the water to far below it. Throughout the tour, numerous flocks of birds were sighted high in the sky heading south east on their migratory journey. Mindful of the distance they travel, their flight formations ever changing and creating dramatic ribbons in the sky, they were a wonderful sight to see.

With gratitude and thankfulness for the powerfully inspiring and unforgettable images of the day, our final tour of the season had come to an end and our guests departed, all of them, acknowledging the spectacular beauty and wonder of this very special place on planet earth, that like all other natural habitats, must be respected and cared for by “we humans” who live here now.