8/10/22 “Lunge Feeding, Risso’s, & a Mighty Blue Whale”
Humpbacks and wind continue to dominate our coasts these last few months. Since March, we have been forced to cancel at least HALF of all our trips on account of rough seas (generated by wind). What trips we send do indeed prove bountiful in terms of sightings, though seasickness has been an apparition that haunts the occasional passenger or two. Yesterday, we received a fantastic break in the weather, with calm seas, clear skies, and incredible sightings from Humpback Whales, to various species of Dolphin (Risso’s, White Sides, and Northern Right Whale Dolphin). Through in the occasional lunge feed amongst plunge diving pelicans, and you have yourself a happy crew with happy passengers to boot. This morning’s trip continued the trend: swapping lunge feeds for a few breaches on a near-immaculate sea. Just as we turned for Monterey, that old familiar breeze began to rise. With precious few minutes ticking by, the forecast suggested that an afternoon trip would be just-doable. Without hesitation, we set back out, and quickly found a cow-calf pair of humpback whales (photos later proved that there were actually THREE whales). With several close passes, passengers were mesmerized by both leviathan and sea, as wave continued to stack and rock the boat. All too soon (literally) the wind machine cranked up, and conditions deteriorated almost immediately. While not “rough” in the strictest sense, we had to respect the fact that the ocean is not for everybody, and just as the concept of “safety” blipped our mental radar, we pulled the plug and went home early. Regardless, our passengers seemed enthralled, and a goodbye-sea-shanty from yours truly was received with thunderous applause (“Old Maui”). Rain checks were distributed, even having found whales – and good ones – and everyone walked off the wharf with big smiles and a new appreciation for Mother Sea.