Eleven humpback whales watched with more in the area!

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There is nothing quite like watching a humpback whale breach in the Santa Barbara Channel.

2021 07-31 SB Channel High stratus and calm seas shifted to sunny skies with wind and some lite chop. Sightings were phenomenal: 11+ humpback whales, 2500 long-beaked common dolphins and 200 California sea lions. Dolphin pods came to the boat starting about 4 miles offshore and were around us all day, particularly on the hotspots. We spent time slowing the … Read More

Improved conditions; 3 humpback whales, 3000 common dolphins.

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Common dolphins and humpback whales feed on the same prey: bait fish schools.

2021 07-30 SB Channel It was still a bit blustery and white-cappy today, but a little better than yesterday. Skies had a high marine layer until halfway through the trip when the sun started to break through.  Sightings for the day included: 3 humpback whales and 2500 long-beaked common dolphins. Our first groups of dolphins found us 5 to 7 … Read More

Wind and seas provide an inspirational trip!

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A humpback spouts into the breezy Santa Barbara Channel surrounded by predatory seabirds (mostly shearwaters).

2021 07-29 SB Channel Passengers on the Condor Express were treated to the thrill of being out in the Santa Barbara Channel with a fresh breeze, sunny skies and white caps all over the surface. I say “treated” because it gives our mostly terrestrial species a glimpse into what living the life of a whale or dolphin, with all sorts … Read More

A Snowflake on the “nautical” ocean today.

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Snowflake. July, 2019. Santa Barbara Channel.

2021 07-28 SB Channel Deckhand Devin reports “nautical” sea conditions today, which, as translated by Captain Dave, means moderate seas and a fresh breeze. Moving too far offshore became uncomfortable at times, consequently Dave used a few of his boat operation skills to find and closely watch the following while keeping things as smooth as possible: 1 humpback whale and … Read More

Calm seas. Lots of dolphins. Among 5 humpback whales one goes wild in non-stop breaching episode.

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Breaching humpback whale in the Santa Barbara Channel....takes your breath away!

2021 07-27 SB Channel An early marine layer burned off to nice sunny skies. Seas were flat and calm once again.  Sightings included 5 humpback whales, 75 offshore bottlenose dolphins, and 3000 long-beaked common dolphins. One cluster of 7 deadly helium Mylar balloons was salvaged from the ocean surface. Captain Dave and his crew took a direct southerly course and … Read More

Nine humpback whales included a friendly little calf and a distinctive, white-spotted adult called Snowflake…and more!

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Humpback tail throw in the Santa Barbara Channel

2021 07-26 SB Channel Subtropical clouds and occasional rain in the morning were offset by very calm seas (again) and over-the-top wildlife sightings. Closely watched species included: 9+ humpback whales, 1 Minke whale, 3000 long-beaked common dolphins, and 200 California sea lions. One deflated helium Mylar balloon was retrieved from the surface. About 4 miles offshore, just as the first … Read More

Mirror glass seas enhance views of 10+ whales, 5000 dolphins.

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A friendly Minke whale in the Santa Barbara Channel.

2021 07-25 SB Channel Ten whales were closely watched today, 4 Minke whales and 6+ humpbacks. Additionally, the long-beaked common dolphins were non-stop and Captain Dave estimated at least 5000 individuals were encountered. Skies had a high marine layer and seas were glassy calm all day. Common dolphins came to us just 2 miles offshore and were around in huge … Read More

Glassy seas with blue, humpback and Minke whales, plus a couple thousand dolphins.

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A giant blue whale is shown very close to the majestic sea cliffs of Santa Cruz island.

2021 07-24 SB Channel Captain Dave and the crew transected the midriff of the Santa Barbara Channel and documented lots of cetaceans along the way. Skies were light gray all day from a high stratus marine layer. This resulted in zero wind and that, in turn, generated a glassy ocean surface. Sighting included: 3 humpback whales, 1 giant blue whale, … Read More

Whales and dolphins in the western Channel on a sunny day.

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Common dolphins in the Santa Barbara Channel feed on the same small fish as the humpback whales.

2021 07-23 SB Channel – west Skies were blue with some light haze and a light breeze created an equivalent light chop noticeable when we headed west at the start of the trip. Sightings today included: 4+ humpback whales, 2500 long-beaked common dolphins and 150 California sea lions. All of the action took place within a 2 mile radius, about … Read More

Western Channel was full of cetaceans.

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Common dolphins in the Santa Barbara Channel.

2021 07-22 SB Channel All of the action was on “our side” (north) of The Lanes, with 4 humpback whales, 2000 long-beaked common dolphins, and 200 California sea lions closely watched. Skies were gray from a high stratus layer and, with a light breeze, seas were still fairly calm. About 8 miles southwest of Platform Holly, or about even with … Read More