A spectacular viewing of Cetaceans: Orcas, Humpback Whales, Dolphins and Dall's Porpoise ~ simply superb!
It was a wonderful day for viewing orcas and humpback whales, beginning with an early sighting of a humpback whale in the distance in Weynton Passage and as we travelled in Johnstone Strait to Cracroft Point we enjoyed a beautiful viewing of one en route. The I15's were in a wide spread in Blackfish Sound, most were favouring the Swanson Island shoreline and as they neared Bold Head they slowed their pace and began to forage, some were seen resting briefly. It was a beautiful viewing even while fog was gathering off in the distance, the change in weather was short lived as the sun was shining and the day was warm when we returned to Alert Bay. While we were with the orcas we heard some distant A-Clan calls, likely the A30's who were ahead of the I15's in their movement west. We also encountered several Humpback whales in Blackfish Sound, one we saw breaching twice at a distance away, and we enjoyed viewing Guardian who was feeding+++ alongside a stellar sea lion and birds (rhinoceros auklets and common murres). Two pacific white-sided dolphins were also in with the mix of orcas, charging around and interacting with the younger orcas playfully.
It was spectacular afternoon! We started the tour off with Red-necked phalaropes swirling around in the currents with dall's porpoises who were nearby feeding. As we approached the Plumper Islands, we spotted a Minke Whale surface twice near shore before vanishing from view. Moments afterwards, a group of Steller Sea Lions swam by before we made our way into Blackfish Sound. When we arrived, we found the I15s swimming peacefully near the surface, they had formed a resting line. The synchronicity of their surfacing and the sound of their blows as the sun shone upon them was an unforgettable experience for it was absolutely beautiful to watch as we all did, spellbound! As we made our way through the Plumper Islands to Weynton Pass, we encountered two humpback whales. One of the Humpbacks engaged briefly in trumpetting and tail lobbing as the I15s neared as they were making their way into Johnstone Strait. We ended the trip viewing harbour seals bathing in the sun and a surprise humpback whale encounter as we enjoyed scones and tea. We observed 'Guardian' playfully enjoying a kelp forest while blowing bubbles and spinning underwater. It was an amazing finale to a beautiful trip.
** The internet is slow again tonight. More photo's will be uploaded in the morning of today's tours.
Today's penned comments: " It was a wonderful experience. Very good!! It was incredible to see orcas and humpback whales." The Tallarons Family, France
" Thank you very much". Italy
"'You are special persons with a nice mission. Very nice tour. Thanks for this nice trip" Paola, Italy
"Thanks for this amazing trip and for the food, well done!" Monice, Italy~ Milano
'Wonderful trip! And lovely muffins and scones. Thank you very much. Unforgettable! Elene, Italy
"We had a whale of a time. Excellent food and friendly crew. The best!"
'Such an amazing close-up view of the orcas and humpback whales today! Thanks for an unforgettable trip!" Pauline, Mississauga
"Thrilling to be with the best of crew and fellow passengers, too! The entertainment was ideal!!"