I love seeing gray whales when they are underwater. -Bob

Santa Cruz Channel yields multiple whales and great island viewing.

2020 01-19 SB Channel  Captain Colton and the crew of the Condor Express found good conditions in the Channel today. It was a little bit overcast but calm seas prevailed. Totals for the trip included 5+ gray whales, and 250 long beaked common dolphins. On the trip across the Channel towards the west end of Santa Cruz Island, there were numerous …

Mother gray whale with a tiny calf similar to our sighting today.

4 Gray Whales including 1 tiny calf, plus dolphins

2020 01-15 SB Channel It was yet another beautiful, calm and sunny day in the Santa Barbara Channel.  Captain Dave and the crew located and watched 4 gray whales and 50 long-beaked common dolphins. Two gray whales were spotted east of Santa Barbara Harbor and were seen circling around and zig-zagging a bit but definitely moving in a westerly direction…as …

Fin whale

A splendid 5 cetacean species day!

2020 01-12 SB Channel  Great sea conditions provided a backdrop to a wonderful “five species day” in the Santa Barbara Channel. Observations included 4000+ common dolphins, 25 offshore bottlenose dolphins, 12 Risso’s dolphins, one fin whale and two gray whales. Common dolphins were abundant from just a few miles off the beach all the way out to The Lanes, 10 miles …

Gray whale fun

A pair of southbound grays, dolphins and island fun

2020 01-10 SB Channel  Conditions were spectacular. It was sunny and bright with very little wind. We ran across to Santa Cruz Island then west towards Santa Rosa Island. Sightings for the day included 750 long-beaked common dolphins and 2 gray whales. Groups of dolphins were encountered from the mid-Channel out towards the island where their numbers picked up. Sea conditions …

Chin music. An upside-down gray whale shows its chin during a session that featured lots of interactions with offshore bottlenose dolphins.

Gray whale interacts with large offshore bottlenose pod…and more!

2020 01-04 SB Channel Skies were sunny but hazy.  Seas were calm except for a light chop near Santa Cruz Island.  Again, near the island, we had a moderate breeze that kept things cool if you were not standing in the direct sunlight.  Captain Dave and his crew located 1000 long-beaked common dolphins, 250+ offshore bottlenose dolphins and 1 gray …

Pair of adult gray whales the we watched today.

Gray whales, Risso’s and commons – awesome conditions

2019 12-31 SB Channel Happy New Year (tomorrow) to everyone! We had a fabulous trip today with an “all four islands” vista.  A light dusting of snow still remains on the Santa Ynez range above Carpinteria.  Seas were relatively calm and so were the winds.  Captain Dave and the crew located: 200 California sea lions (in one small area), 50 …

A single humpback tail fluke waterfall was seen festooned with long-beaked common dolphins today.

Drop dead gorgeous day with ample wildlife.

2019 12-28 SB Channel The Santa Barbara Channel was indescribably beautiful. There was bright sunshine all day and one could see all 4 islands clearly. Sightings were also spectacular:  200 California sea lions, 4000 long-beaked common dolphins and 1 humpback whale. It was a moderately bumpy ride for the first few miles, then the ocean calmed down nicely. We encountered …

First grays!

2019 12-27 SB Channel  Yippee! Our first gray whales of the season! Sea conditions were challenging today but Captain Dave kept the boat moving in the right direction for a maximum comfort. Totals for the trip included 2 gray whales and 300 long-beaked dolphins. Moderate seas came at us from the west channel, so Dave ran east. After running to an area …

Risso’s dolphin in the Santa Barbara Channel

Risso’s, humpbacks, commons & a mob of sea lions

2019 12-26 SB Channel  Captain Colton and the crew found moderately rough seas in the Channel today but nonetheless scored some fantastic sightings. Species include 2 humpback whales, 3000+ long -beaked common dolphins, a few hundred California sea lions and 10 Risso’s dolphins.  Sightings began during our tour of the majestic seacliffs on the west end of Santa Cruz Island in the …

A humpback whale spouts into the breeze, similar to our sightings today.

Wild whales, weather and dolphins.

2019 12-13 SB Channel  There were some wild weather changes in the Channel today which I’ll tell you about later. Meanwhile the wildlife sightings were good and included 20 coastal bottlenose dolphins and 2 humpback whales. As we left the coast, and the cruise ship anchored there, behind us it was a nice calm sunny day.  Pretty quickly we encountered a large …