October 3, 2009

So Long San Juans

This will be my last post of the season....we are now officially finished with all daily trips. My my how the summer has blown by! We'll still be running whale watching & wildlife tours for the next 3 Saturdays of October...the 10th, 17th, & 24th.

A wonderful way to end my season out here with Orcas still in the waters! A bit of a breezy day with whitecaps and chop, the wind out of the north, and the crisp feeling of autumn in the air. The Orcas were first seen coming south from Henry Island in Haro Strait. We met them off of Eagle Point. They were very spread out, lots of foraging going on and very long dives of 5 or more minutes. A mix of Killer Whales today....members of J & K pod....with L87 apparently being out there as well. We left them as they continued to move offshore.

At least 2 dozen Steller Sea Lions were hauled out on Whale Rocks and a few of them letting out deep grunting roars. The clouds parted on our way in and Mt. Baker is looking fresh with new snow from the recent set of storms that passed through! What a sight. Just before arriving back to Friday Harbor, I sighted a Bald Eagle that was posted on the top of a tree on Turn Island. He or she suddenly took flight as if to grab a fish or prey from the water, hovering for minutes until finally looping back to its watch post in the treetop.

The San Juans are a very special place for me and it's been a wonderful season!

Till next time,
Jaclyn, naturalist