August 4, 2016

Saturna or Bust

What an adventure of a day out on Seahawk! We traversed waters that we don't typically get to venture out in, all due to beautiful weather conditions and exciting whale reports! On our morning trip, we ventured north and had the chance to view some harbor seals (our adorable little rock sausages as we call them here), the majestic bald eagle, and several little harbor porpoises playing all around our boat. So cute! The water was sparkling, the sun beaming, and the Salish Sea sprinkled more of its pixie dust on our passengers - it has that magical effect on people. There's never a dull moment out here, and it was a beautiful trip in a Pacific Northwest paradise. 

On our second trip, we had a wonderful wedding party charter our vessel for an afternoon whale watch. With good energy and good vibes, we again turned north, anxious to see if some whales that had been reported earlier had moved further south. It was wonderful to cruise along past Stuart, John's, and Waldron Island to move past East Point and then along the north side of Saturna Island. Welcome to Canada! Moving through beautiful Tumbo Pass allowed us to see some spectacular geology while we kept our eyes peeled ahead of us for signs of orcas that had been reported. And at last...some blows! These powerful exhalations can be seen from a few miles away, and we saw a pod of four transient killer whales making their way down the channel.

After some speculation and communication among naturalists on other vessels, we determined that these were the T19's and T18, transient orcas that we haven't yet spotted this season. It was great to see them! They appeared to have just finished a kill, as they were moving slowly in a manner that suggested they were through with the hunt and ready for a rest, now that their bellies were full. It was beautiful seeing them move slowly through the pastel waters, evening light slanting through the trees on the islands around us and barely a breeze to ruffle the pines!

Sadly we had to turn back and head home, but the magic wasn't over. A humpback whale surfaced right as we were cruising around East Point! The perfect opportunity to compare a baleen whale and those mammal-nomming orcas had presented itself. We soaked in those views and continued on our way. The whole way home, we had smiles plastered on our faces, and good moods abounded onboard. Thanks to all who joined us on Seahawk today - a magical journey with some crazy memories!