Monday, December 01, 2008

So they don't jump like Shamu?

California Sea Lions chillin' on a buoy:

The prominant dorsal fin of a Fin Whale:
Fin Whale

A pod of 8-10 Orcas were spotted on Saturday afternoon, so I headed out yesterday hoping we would get to see them also. The chances were slim, but I hadn't been out on the water since June, so it was about time I got on a boat again. It was lovely--the cold wind against my skin, breathing in the salty air, being surrounded by the endless blue. I almost forgot how much I liked being out there.

My hope in seeing Orcas dwindled when we came across the sea lions, lounging on the buoy like they always do-- an indication that the Orcas must be long gone. If the great predators had still been lurking in the waters, then we probably would not have found any sign of life. But there the sea lions were, just chillin', which meant I should put my hopes in seeing other whales.

So instead of the Orcas, we ended up seeing a Fin whale, the second largest whale. Fin whales can sometimes be uninteresting to watch, but this one was amazing. It circled around the boat twice, and was so close to us that we were able to see its white right chin. Although it went for a couple of deep dives, it wasn't skittish and pretty much stayed in the same area. This was the best Fin whale sighting I have ever had. One of the ladies on board didn't seem as impressed as I was and asked, "So they don't jump like Shamu?" Oh, people crack me up.

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