Today was a special day (though what day isn’t special when you work on a whale watching boat?). Captain and Co-owner of Discovery Whale Watch John Mayer took the helm on this fine winter morning: noteworthy, as running the business and readying our new boat keeps him quite busy these days. A man of considerable experience (having taught me everything I know about seamanship) he had little trouble in finding a humpback whale early on in the trip. As most of our humpbacks have returned to their tropical breeding grounds for the winter, we are always most pleased to find an “off-season” humpback. We watched the young whale for some time before Captain Mayer’s classic need for adventure lured us out to the west, whereby we traversed the rim of the Monterey Submarine Canyon to encounter four Gray Whales. Champion migrators themselves, the Grays did what Grays do best: breathing, swimming, and diving. Rinse and repeat: they will cover upwards of 100 miles a day, on a gray(t) migration that begins around Alaska and ends in Baja California. They do not eat, nor do they sleep; reproduction consumes them as they abandon their summertime feeding grounds and return to their winter time breeding grounds. After observing them for a healthy time, we wished them well, and made for home. Not a single white cap was to be seen this day, and light-patchy clouds offered a beautiful and bright sky over a smooth and gently rolling sea. Special indeed.