The wisps of fog that enshrouded Santa Barbara Harbor quickly lifted as we pushed to the east. At times there were little “sucker holes” of sun and warmth, but for the most part it was glassy smooth but with a low overcast ceiling. Once on the feeding grounds the ceiling did not matter. We were surrounded by humpback whales. Captain Eric wants to call it 14 humpback whales, but I personally thought it was more like 18. The whales were surrounding us in pairs and triads. There were a few instances of surface lunge feeding, a prolonged episode of lob tailing, and a few spontaneous breaching whales, including a double breach about a mile west of our location. It is safe to say that the humpbacks are now arriving in the Santa Barbara Channel for their Fall seasonal food fest.
A solid 5 Minke whales were watched close to the Condor Express, but I saw many many more off a ways from the boat. The common dolphins were pretty thin most of the day, but we had a massive herd as we turned the ship towards home, with perhaps 750 or 1,000 animals.
I’ll post up the photos from today’s adventure sometime early this week.
Hope to see you on board soon.
Tell ’em Bob sent you.