2019 08-20 SB Channel
The morning overcast marine layer quickly gave way to sunny skies in the Santa Barbara Channel. The skilled crew of the Condor Express, under the leadership of Captain Dave, negotiated a calm northern Channel and windy south to provide exceptional mammal sightings, including: 4+ humpback whales and 3,000 long-beaked common dolphins. This “negotiation” consisted of pushing offshore and to the west as far as possible to find wildlife, without crossing the wind line and the rough seas the wind brings. It was a challenging but successful dance.
Not only were dolphins found everywhere in the Channel, but there were exceedingly large numbers of individuals today. Some of the pods were small, but many were nearly 1,000-strong and stretched over a mile or more of ocean. It is hard to have a boring day at sea with dolphins around the boat consistently.
The Condor Express moved to an area south of Holly, and nearly 10 miles offshore, where a region of feeding dolphins and seabirds yielded whales. Four whales were together, following the dolphins and bait balls, and actively feeding in shallow waters beneath the surface. As they moved around, the made several close passes by the boat and great looks were had by all. Later the whale group split off and the individuals went their separate ways. More spouts and some breaches were seen to the east and west using binoculars.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store.
Condor Express, and