California Sea Lions
Mature Bald Eagle
After a few days of cold and rain, we got a nice reprieve for today’s trip with sunny skies as we departed from Seattle. With no reports of any whales in the south, we decided to head north to see if the gray whales had shown up yet. While most gray whales migrate from Alaska to Mexico and back, there is a small group of about 10 gray whales nicknamed “Sounders” that have discovered the large quantities of ghost shrimp present in north Puget Sound and come here each spring to feed. They traditionally show up the last few days of February and first few days of March, so we figured we’d go give the area a thorough search.
We turned right out of Elliott Bay and found two California sea lions asleep on a marker buoy. It was a great day for birdwatchers as we passed dozens of surf scoters, cormorants, and western grebes as we continued north. As we approached Everett we even saw a mature bald eagle in flight. We circumnavigated Hat Island and completed an exhaustive search of the area, but no signs of the “Sounders” just yet. It should be any day now, just in time for our Everett opening weekend March 4th and 5th!
On the way back to Seattle we found another California sea lion alone on a buoy that seemed to wave at us as we passed by. It was the perfect end to the trip!