May 12, 2009

Never Give Up. . .

With no reports of whales our safari started by heading South out of Friday Harbor. We passed Whale Rocks and encountered Steller's Sea Lions and Harbor Seals. I am always impressed with the size of Steller's Sea Lions around 1500 pounds! Pupping season for harbor seals is mid June and I can't wait to see all the baby seals.

We also took a good long look at Goose Island on the southern tip of San Juan Island and saw the Cormorant rookery. Fishermen from China historically had used cormorants for fishing. (We will tell you the whole story on the boat, just ask)

As we came around the southern corner of San Juan Island into the Strait of Juan De Fuca, we ran into some rough waters. So - we decided to turn north and go up the west side of San Juan Island. This ended up to be a fantastic decision... We found J-pod near Lime Kiln State Park heading North. We were able to identify J-1 "Ruffles", the eldest male of all Southern Resident Killer Whales. His dorsal fin is about 5 feet tall.

We ended the tour by taking a quick peek at Spieden Island. The Mouflon Sheep were out grazing and a Bald eagle was sitting in its nest.

Our trip may have started with doubt and rough seas, but we never gave up.
We ended up seeing orca whales and some great wildlife.

Naturalist,
Jeannette Miller

Orca Whales and Wildlife Are Our Only Business. ©