Close Encounters of the Gray Whale Kind!!!

Everett AM

Highlights:
California sea lion on marker
Close up looks at #383 and #723
Spy hop from #723
Bald eagles soaring over Hat island
Perfect weather all day

Naturalist Log:

When we arrived at the boat a light wind cooled the air as the sun sat high in the sky. The naval yard was full of sounds with the pledge of allegiance echoing across the water. We quickly got the boat ready and in no time at all we had guests showing up, excited to board the boat and get the adventure under way. Once all the passengers were on board we released our lines from the dock and we were off on yet another adventure.

We headed down Jetty island which was busy with small birds scouring the shore line and a few Canadian geese swimming in the water. After reaching the end of Jetty island captain Scott spotted our first marine wildlife of the day. A California sea lion was hauled out on the marker buoy just off the end of Jetty island and was napping in the now brilliant sunshine. After getting him to pose so perfectly for multiple photos we turned the boat west and headed out into the sound.

We started our search at the south end of Hat island but the waters there lay still and so we continued on to the north. It wasn’t long before captain Scott spotted our first whale of the day. It was #383 and he was just off the north end of Hat island. When we got on seen he started the show with a great look at his tail before going on a deep dive. After that we got a lot of close looks from him and some really close tail shots, it was an amazing show!!! After getting our full of #383 we headed over to a log that had been drifting around with some signs of life on it. It turned out to be a tiny harbor seal hauled out on the log and drifting wherever it may drift. After all the cute comments died down we turned and headed south again.

Captain Scott got a call from a boat that there was a whale at the south end of Hat island so we went to see for ourselves. In no time at all we could see blows in the distance as a gray whales was feeding in the shallows just off Hat island. It was gray whale #723(Lucy) and he was having a grand old time filling his belly full of shrimp. We got a lot of great looks at this whales as he was bubbling under the water and feeding in big circles. He came in close enough at one point that we could even see the fracker that Cascadia research has on him. Out of no where he suddenly decide to do a spy hop and really show off for the boat.

It was a beautiful day to be out in the water and was definitely a great day to be with whales. The show we had and the weather we lucked out with were perfect all day. Definitely an exciting trip!!!!

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