July 1, 2011

A pod of Minke Whales!

We headed south with word that there were killer whales heading towards False Bay. It was a beautiful sunny day; both the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges were visible in the distance. As we rode past south beach we saw at least ten harbor seals bobbing their heads out of the water near shore. Shortly after, there were spouts in the distance. It was J-pod! After seeing the first spouts, dorsal fins came up from all directions. On male was identified as Blackberry. The pod was changing direction, coming together, and then splitting apart again. A few of them were lob tailing and spy hopping as well!

We stayed with the whales for a while then went in search for more wildlife, and boy did we find some. Minke whales! More than we’ve ever encountered, estimating that there were between seven and ten of them. Plus, in that area were flocks of seabirds in the water and the air. It was an amazing site. As we headed back to Friday Harbor we stopped to see some harbor seals hauled out on the rocks. What an amazing day!

~Kristen, Naturalist, San Juan Safaris