Captain’s Blog

September 3, 2017 – Humpback Whales, Seals & Sea Lions

September 3, 2017

10am Tour

Glass-like waters met the Pacific Explorer as we headed out past Ogden Point and on to the Strait of Juan de Fuca. We started our search to the west, looking for any signs of blows, splashes or fins breaking the surface. Whale watching boats spread out across the water in directions, working together to cover as much area as possible and find the whales.

After an exhaustive search, good news was received that a humpback was spotted not far from Victoria! We cruised over to find a very relaxed humpback, who almost appeared to be in a resting state. Well he or she woke up and surprised us with a monstrous breach! Water went everywhere as this 40 ton whale crashed into the deep blue. A breach was not all we were treated to, as the humpback started to thrash it’s tail over and over again as it was lying belly up towards the surface! Eighteen feet across and sporting a white patch on both sides of it’s flukes, we were able to identify this humpy as BCZ0180. It is so amazing to be able to identify individual whales!

As we neared the end of our tour, we were greeted at the mouth of the harbour by the beautiful boats from the Classic Boat Festival. Tall sails on wooden sail boats made for beautiful pictures on the flat calm waters! Another great day was in the logbook!

2pm Tour

As school starts in September and kids go back to class, we continue to explore our ocean classroom where the teachers are 40 ton whales and 2500 pound furry sea lions! We cruised out on the green and white Pacific Explorer in search of whales and other marine creatures.

We were excited to find the glossy black back and white plume of mist break the surface of the water- a humpback was near! This humpback would surface so gently that we were able to capture it’s tubercles that line the top of the jaw of humpbacks. We even got some great views of the humpback raising it’s huge tail above the water before going on a deep dive.

Next we were off to see the many creatures at Race Rocks Lighthouse. The lighthouse itself was built in 1860 and is the second oldest lighthouse on the Canadian Pacific. It’s black and white stripes and granite block construction make it both unique and beautiful. The California and Steller sea lions make the islands around the lighthouse home. They love to lie in the sun and make a whole lot of noise! We also spotted the quieter and much smaller harbour seals soaking up the warm sun. We returned to Victoria with cameras full of memories and smiles on our faces!

View more amazing tour photos here.

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