T128 and T125A
Race Rocks Lighthouse
Mist shrouded the Olympics as we passed through the Harbor and a stiff breeze blew out of the west. The pilot boat was making its way back into the harbor from dropping off a pilot to one of the incoming tankers. As we rounded the tip of Ediz Hook a number of Harbor Seals were hauled out taking refuge from the waves and warming up. Small fishing craft lined the shore in hopes of catching salmon.
With reports of increasing wind later in the day we started out in a northwesterly direction. Along the way sharp eyed passenger picked out Harbor Porpoise feeding along the current lines. we searched for the Humpbacks we knew were frequenting the western waters but mother nature had other plans for us as the wind and tide built the further west we went.
Luckily a call came in and we did an about face putting the wind to our back in search of some Orcas. Setting our sights south of Victoria on Vancouver Island, we steamed ahead. Not long after a large black dorsal fin was spotted indicating we had an adult male Orca in front of us. Soon after, a second large black dorsal emerged. We had 2 adult male Orcas. the two surface not far from one another and seemed to be a in traveling mode traveling together. After some good looks we could see that it was The two transient orca brothers, 28 year old T128 and his younger 18 year old brother T125A . As they traveled they would separate, possibly looking for a little snack along the way but eventually would return to travel together. T125A surfaced next to the boat and traveled alongside us for awhile giving all on board some excellent views of him as he sliced through the water.
More and more Canadian boats showed up to watch these two as they headed west so we eventually peeled off to go and search for more wildlife. We made the rounds getting great views of Race Rocks Lighthouse and Victoria the capitol of BC. As we traveled mother nature gave us peeks of the Olympics and the snow covered peaks while we traveled in the rainshadow effect with blue skies overhead. Mt Baker made an appearance through the clouds.
Rhinocerous Auklets, Glaucous winged Gulls, Heerman’s Gulls and one Shearwater made appearance in the Salish Sea. The day turned out to be a beautiful one with the sun shining down on us and Orca brothers sharing some special time with us.
Naturalist – Lee