2018 09-20 SB Channel
Captain Dave summed it up: “There was never a time today when we were not involved in wildlife viewing.” That’s what you get when you have sunny skies and a glassy ocean surface alongside a wonderful wildlife invasion. Totals for closely-watched species included 9 humpback whales, 3000 long-beaked common dolphins, 1500 short-beaked common dolphins, and 250+ California sea lions. The day was spectacular.
Our first hot spots with dolphins, whales and sea lions were about 8 miles south of Hope Ranch. Here we found three main groups of dolphins and two whales. As usual, plenty of sea lions were following along behind the action.
Dave then took the Condor Express further south to a spot near the mid-Channel NOAA buoy where a single small whale paid a very close visit to the boat. The whale surfaced twice in succession and was only a few meters from the hull. The water was blue and clear which enhanced the sighting. From here Dave followed the whales and dolphins to the east.
As we moved along on an easterly course, we found many additional whales, many hundreds more dolphins, and loads of sea lions. One of the whales did a short stint of kelping. One of the major pods that came through the zone was composed of short-beaked dolphins, and were highly animated. Numerous “high flying” dolphins were seen and one of them got at least 7 meters straight up out of the ocean.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store.
Condor Express, and
PS there are no public whale watch trips this weekend.