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Perfect conditons. Fifty whales in the area, we closely watched 20.

Image: part of a large group of humpback whales

2023 11-01 SB Channel

Skies were blue and it was warm in the Channel. Seas were glassy smooth. One could sharply see all 4 islands and the mainland from Pt. Conception to Boney Ridge. We closely watched: 20+ humpback whales, 1 Minke whale and 3500 long-beaked common dolphins.

Second Captain Kelly spotted a large pod of dolphins, perhaps 1000 strong, just 5 miles offshore, and spread out over a wide area. Even from this vantage point, one could detect multiple spouts in the far distance. As we slowly turned to set a course for the distant humpback spouts, a Minke whale made a few passes by the boat.

The humpback and dolphin hot spot, from whence we saw all the spouts at a distance, was a bit east and inside The Lanes adjacent to Prisoner’s Harbor, Santa Cruz Island. We watched a group of 5 humpbacks, then another with 7 whales. These whales were socializing, chasing each other around, and rolling. One of them breached. Dolphins were everywhere.

A few miles away we watched 2 super-friendly whales that made 3 or 4 close passes by the boat. Nearby were 5 adult whales that also came close to us. At this last location the water clarity was very good and had a nice blue color.

But wait! On the way home we saw 6 more whales.

Captain Dave though there were at least 50 whales in the area and we had time to closely watch 20 of them.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store,

Bob Perry Condor Express, and

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Nov 07, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Competition between the male Humpbacks for an inside track to a potential female match was very lively with numerous chin slaps, chomping and white water churning. The fetid odor from the blows upwind of the boat added another dimension to the whale watching extravaganza. Wonderful day to experience a wide spectrum of Humpback Whale behavior up close and ponder the possibilities latent in the distant blows, far and numerous.

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