9:00 am trip Highlights:
*Bald eagles, harbor seals, and harbor porpoise
We took a route through the inner San Juan Islands to start out our trip today, and we spotted lots of harbor porpoise along the way and a few bald eagles! We reached the orcas just as they were approaching Stuart Island. The resident killer whales were grouped up in two tight groups, one with mostly K-pod members, and the other with J-pod. They were sleeping as they swam along the shoreline. We spotted J2, Granny, J19, J41, J51, J16, J26, J50, J27, J22, J34, J38, K22, K33, K26, and many others. We watched them as they swam right by the Tern Point lighthouse for a great photo opportunity and then we turned back to look at the next group coming northward including all of the K13 subpod. They started to hunt for fish and K25 broke off to swim right for us! K20, Spock, and her son Comet, K38, swam in circles chasing some fish! After we let them pass by we turned around a third time to check out the last group that included L-pod whales! What an awesome visit with all three pods of resident orcas!
3:30 pm Trip Highlights:
*L pod orcas near Point Roberts
*Harbor Porpoise, harbor seals, a bald eagle, and a Steller sea lion
We headed straight north to try to catch up with the resident orcas we saw in the morning that were headed toward the Frazier River up in Canada. On the way up we slowed down near Sucia Island to check out a bunch of harbor seals, a bald eagle, and a Steller sea lion. We reached L-pod orcas near Point Roberts heading north. We spotted the L54 subpod first along with L88, Wavewalker, and L84, Nyssa swimming together. They were grouped up closely together and we got many great views of them as they headed northward. L54, Ino, and her offspring L108, Coho, and L117, Keta, were all side by side at this point. Next we pushed a little further to look at some whales that were up ahead. We spotted one of the whales spyhop three times! L47, Muncher, and her son L115, Mystic were swimming around looking for fish pretty diligently. Then the L54 subpod swam in and spread out for some fishing too. Wavewalker gave us the highlights of the day when he swam right toward us and circled around several times in apparent pursuit of salmon! He gave us some fantastic, close up views as he swam by us on both sides of the boat right before we headed back toward the dock! The sunset was amazing on the way home. What a great day! Naturalist Bart Rulon