May 31, 2021

Family Favorite Humpback Whale Flukes in Salish Sea

Humpback Whale in Salish Sea

Olivia | M/V Osprey | May 31st, 2021 | 12:30pm

Congratulations to anyone in the islands today- it was officially the hottest day all year! We spend every day out on the water with multiple layers on despite the temperature because these waters stay around 47 degrees year-round. With that wind flooding off the cool water, it makes for chilly trips even in the dead of summer. Lucky us! We had a lack of wind, blue skies stretched as far as we could see, and degrees. In the 3 years I have been working here, I can count on one hand the number of days I have been able to wear shorts for the entirety of the trip. Today was the day!

We headed north into Boundary Pass again, stopping to view a feeding frenzy of Harbor Porpoise all around our vessel! This was the highest volume of Harbor Porpoise we have witnessed in quite some time. Maybe everyone is appreciating this change in weather? Continuing northeast towards Patos Island, we bumped left into the Strait of Georgia, making sure to stay on the U.S side of the border. Shortly after this entrance, we were able to see Big Mama with an ID number of BCY0324. Our passengers had fin-tastic views all around our boat, some as close at 100 yards off (the limit of which we can respectfully view these baleen whales). She never ceased to amaze us with her graceful tail flukes dipping into the water before descending into the depths. Many water droplets seemingly fell off slowly, taking time to capture the sun and carry it to the sea.

After slowly making our exit, we stopped to take lots of calendar-worthy photos of Patos Island Lighthouse with Mount Baker sharply standing as a backdrop. Captain Gabe even stopped at Skipjack Island to view dozens of Harbor Seals hauled out, thermoregulating in the midday sun. We had multiple opportunities to show off a real baleen plate, a Humpback Whale model to show off physiology, and the photo of our ID catalog. My favorite part of the day? A young passenger saying “whale” for the very first time and continually showing eyes of excitement for “mama whale”- heart melt! This was the most beautiful conclusion to our holiday weekend.