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Blue whales, humpbacks and lots of dolphins in zero visibility dense fog.

Image: Dense fog reveals Mount Diablo or Diablo Peak, Santa Cruz Island. It is the tallest mountain peak in the Channel Islands (2,429 feet,740 m).

2024 07-06 SB Channel 

As today’s photo suggests, we found near zero visibility, dense fog, all day in the Channel. On the plus side, the water clarity remails spectacular. Sightings for the day included: 2500 common dolphins, 2 humpback whales and 4+ giant blue whales.

The total number of dolphins that were closely watched consisted of several groups. Just 2 miles outbound from Santa Barbara a small pod located us. Later, with the giants, a much larger and scattered group was seen. Finally, on our way home we passed through and additional 2 large groups. With zero visibility fog, all sightings were either by luck or through the efforts of the dolphins.

Still in the fog, large footprints (created by the upstroke of a whale’s tail) were seen near the Condor Express. We followed them until two large and individual adult humpbacks surfaced. The pair were heading west and were in “travel mode.”

The fog “opened” to ¼ mile lateral visibility as we neared The Lanes. Among the throng of aforementioned dolphins, the area produced close looks at 4 giant blue whales with more in the area. We saw a single, then a cow/calf pair, and finally another solo whale. The mom and calf surfaced next to the boat for some great looks.

On the way home, as you already know, we encountered additional common dolphins.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store.

Bob Perry

Condor Express, and

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