2022 02-10 SB Channel
Here we go again! What an unbelievable stretch of awesome weather and super smooth sea conditions. The sightings, too, were phenomenal: 4 gray whales (read below), 1300 long-beaked common dolphins, and 6 Dall’s porpoise.
Three miles off Hope Ranch there was a several mile long hotspot with anchovy bait balls being preyed upon by over 1000 common dolphins, masses of brown pelicans, elegant terns and other hungry animals. It was spectacular to watch as all the action was next to the boat.
Later we traversed the Santa Barbara Channel and made our way into the Santa Cruz Channel where we found 2 large adult NORTHbound gray whales. We saw spouts and a few tail flukes as these were all business and among the first migratory whales to be heading to their Alaskan feeding grounds.
The crew retrieved 2 horrible balloons from the ocean surface as we slowly turned to head back to the harbor. When we moved out of the Santa Cruz Channel and rounded Fraser Point, a half-dozen shy Dall’s porpoise were quickly viewed as they vanished into the blue.
There were more small clusters of common dolphins on the way home. About 3 mile south of the harbor we spotted 2 more gray whales that were SOUTHbound…and not too boat friendly…among the last days for these Mexico-bound migrants.