A nice iPhone capture showing the interior walls near the mouth of the Painted Cave.©Dave Beezer - Condor Express

2000 small cetaceans plus 4 leviathans.

2019 10-10 SB Channel

Skies were full of a warm, hazy sun.  Seas were calm and the breeze was light.  Great sightings were had today with 4 humpback whales and 2000 long-beaked common dolphins closely watched.

We intercepted our first large pod of dolphins about 10 miles south of Santa Barbara harbor, on a course headed for the western end of Santa Cruz Island.  We would find more large herds all day long.  The calm seas enhance the view of these agile mammals as they surfed our bow, side and stern waves.  It is always remarkable to me how often they roll on their side and seem to take a look up at their fans on the deck of the Condor Express.

A lone whale was watched for a while before Captain Dave took everyone on a short tour of the western end of Santa Cruz Island, its sea cliffs, coves and, of course, the world-famous Painted Cave.  As you can see by his photograph, conditions were excellent inside the first chamber of The Cave.

Outside The Cave, as we moved to the north, 2 very large adult whales were watched.  Keep in mind there were plenty of huge surface bait balls around today.  It was not too surprising when both of the beasts did a massive, simultaneous vertical lunge on one of the bait concentrations.  Whoa!

On the way home a 4th whale was located and watched.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store.
Bob Perry
Condor Express, and
CondorExpressPhotos.com

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