Condor Express - SEA Landing
301 W. Cabrillo Blvd.
Santa Barbara, CA  93101

(805) 882-0088 (Phone)   |   (888) 779-4253 (Toll Free)   |   (805) 965-0942 (Fax)




Year Founded:
   This all-new, 75 foot, high-speed catamaran is the most comfortable & advanced vessel on the west coast, in the premier Whale Watching & Party/Dinner Cruise venue in California. Crew members are experienced naturalists. Come ride with the experts.
    The Santa Barbara Channel is home to over 30 different species of whales, dolphins, and seals and sealions that visit throughout the year, making these waters some of the most consistent locations found anywhere to view a variety of marine mammals. The Discovery Channel's "Wonders of our National Parks" highlighted the outstanding abundance of marine life in the Santa Barbara Channel and named it "One of the 10 Best Places in the WORLD to View Wildlife."
    From May through November (summer season) our cruising grounds include the nutrient rich waters around Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa and San Miguel Islands. It's this area that is generally considered to contain one of the world's highest concentration of feeding blue whales and humpback whales in the world! In the winter and spring months we visit with the California gray whale herd as it passes by on both their Southern and Northern migration.
    The CONDOR EXPRESS is available for private charters for those who wish to book the entire vessel for any type of function or event, including birthdays, weddings, fundraisers, anniversaries, or a sunset cruise. Groups can be as small as 10 people or up to 149 persons. The CONDOR EXPRESS is just what your group needs for that perfect experience on the water. Its large, luxuriously teak paneled, walk through cabin offers comfortable booth seating for up to 68 people! A complete galley, cocktail bar, buffet hot table and salad bar. And catering is always available from light snacks and hors d'oeuvres to full dinners. We also offer regularly-scheduled Open Party Cocktail/Sunset Cruises along the coast, as well as Adventure Cruises such as Pelagic Bird Trips, Island Kayaking, and much more throughout the year. The CONDOR EXPRESS is also the perfect platform for educational and research trips, as well as marine-oriented film work. It has the speed and stability to work comfortably anywhere your research needs take you, and is well equipped with state of the art navigational equipment, a large working deck, and the ability to work underwater equipment.
Activities Available:
    Birding,  Cruises,  Kayaking,  Tours,  Whale Watching,  Wildlife Tours,  

Business Hours:
    Summer: 24/7 -- Winter: 6 am - 7 pm
Location Type:
Payment Accepted:
    Cash,   MasterCard,   Visa,  Debit Card,  
Languages Spoken:
Business Categories:
    Bird Watching
    Boat Charters
    Boat Charters
    Deep-Sea Fishing
    Kayaking & Canoeing
    Whale Watching
    Whale Watching
    Whale Watching
    Wildlife Tours

    During normal business hours.
    Outdoor Location
Handicapped Accessible?
    Some restrictions
Cell Phones & Pagers?
Cameras/Recording Equip.?
Pets Allowed?
Gift Certificates?
    Available for Sale
Classes Offered?
 Recent Buzzes!!
3/25/15 - Humpbacks, Grays, Bottlenose and Commons !
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Right off the bat we had a brief encounter with 5 inshore bottlenose dolphins on the morning trip. They led us through the East Beach anchorage for a while, and then eagle-eyed second captain, Eric, located some taller spouts not even a mile outside Santa Barbara Harbor. This would turn out to be a nice pair of young northbound gray whales and we rode along with them up to Hendry’s. Near Hendry’s we were about a mile off the beach and spouted numerous spouts near the kelp beds closer to shore. We quickly got on another pair of gray #whales and they behaved much like the first pair, nice surface times but long down times. Luckily the bright sun and clear water offshore made the sightings even better. The last cetacean species of the morning was a group of about 100 long-beaked common #dolphins full of mother-calf pairs…a “nursery pod.”
The calm and glassy sea conditions coupled with air temperatures in the 80’s F persisted for most of the noon trip. On this afternoon adventure Captain Dave, acting on good intel, took the mighty Condor Express far to the east of Platform Hogan in the Ventura Flats region in search of humpback whales. Along the way we played with over 500 long-beaked common dolphins in the crystal clear water. The dolphins were scattered across the zone, not packed up into a pod. About that time we spotted the tall spouts of at least 3 different humpback whales in the region. The friendliest and closest one was our buddy “Scarlet” which regular readers will recall from last year. Scarlet, in short, has a deep propeller scar and a few associated globular tumors that were also no doubt a result of the propeller. Scarlet had nice surface times and long down times. At one point she passed directly under the Condor Express as we could tell from a long and robust bubble stream that rose to the surface along our port side. Later we saw the other humpback whales, but not as nice and close as Scarlet. On the way home we saw gray whale spouts all over the nearshore waters, and followed one from the eastern edge of the East Beach anchorage back towards the Harbor.
3/22/15 - Waves of Gray Whales Pulse along the Coast
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
It is fascinating to me how the gray whale migration along the Santa Barbara Coast comes in waves. Take today for example. Captain Eric ran two trips, 12 noon and 3pm, each 2½ hours long. They were both excellent trips with wonderful sightings, and a total of 14 gray whales plus 300 or so long-beaked common dolphins were observed.
On the noon excursion, we found 2 pairs of gray whales (more spouts in the distance). These #whales were steadily moving up the coast and spent a lot of time on the surface. The ocean was calm and blue, and there was hazy, warm sunshine. We had a great time with these whales, plus at least 250 long-beaked common dolphins came by to play. A good trip.
However, on the 3pm adventure, 10 gray whales were seen. The first group included 6 whales that spent over 90 minutes rolling around, swimming upside down at high speeds, tail slapping, chin slapping, and opening their mouths to show their baleen to the world. They never left the surface during the entire sighting, and after it was over the group split in two….three and three. Next about 50 common #dolphins played on the bow and entertained the fans. This led us to 2 more pairs of gray whales about a mile apart, and each pair was a large adult and a small juvenile, perhaps a yearling, whale. In both cases the juvenile became very friendly and approached the Condor Express.
The best hypothesis I can come up with regarding today’s migratory pattern was that gray whales must leave the lagoons in waves, and/or mix and match as they come up the coast so as to form pulses of large cetacean bodies all together.
3/19/15 - 5 Gray Whales
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
The Condor Express is back ! We ran a single noon trip and had a blast. All the action was west of the harbor, from Leadbetter up to Elwood. We had good looks at 5 gray whales, one of which was super friendly. The water is still very clear so the sightings of the #whales and #dolphins were wonderful. Speaking of dolphins, we had a solo pod with about 10 long-beaked common dolphins, and practically all of them were mother-calf pairs. Very cool.
Conditions were glassy in spots, light chop in others. There was little to no wind and the sky was gray as a “storm” was supposed to be entering the zone later tonight. It was a mellow ride today and it was great to be back home on the Express.
3/18/15 - Gray Whales Salute Old Condor's Departure
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
The original 90-foot long steel sportfishing boat Condor, aka “the Original,” or “Big Bird,” ran its last two whale watching trips of the season today. 9 am and 12 noon trips left the docks for 2½ hour adventures and it was another fantastic day all the way around. At 2:37pm the Condor’s aluminum high speed offspring, the Condor Express, returned to Santa Barbara Harbor. We bid the original Condor a fond adios and thank the crew for helping us whale watch for the past month or so.
It’s “welcome home” day for the Condor Express which has been in the boat yard undergoing a major overhaul of the engine rooms, painting outside and in, and generally doing everything possible to get ready for another 13 years of consecutive A-1 service. Coast Guard inspections were passed with flying colors as Captain Dave had the Express in tip top shape.
The 9am trip on the Condor ran with glassy seas that had a small wind bump coming down the Channel from winds and swells far to the west. Skies were generally cloudy and areas of virga could be seen in the sky. This trip featured cetaceans both large and small. On the small side, we watched at least 100 individual long-beaked common #dolphins spread over the area. As the boat moved near them, they took turns visiting and riding the bow. The show stopper for the morning adventure was our long and magical encounter with two fabulous northbound gray #whales we found off Hope Ranch.
At noon the bump on the ocean was subsiding and it was even glassier and calmer than our morning trip. We watched at least 8 gray whales with many more spouts all around us. One group was particularly frisky and we witnessed breaching, head-lifts, rolling, spy-hopping upside down and other forms of “socialization.” On this adventure we ran into at least 100 long-beaked common dolphins, but unlike the morning encounter, the afternoon dolphins were all in one nice pod.
3/17/15 - Grays and a Humpback
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
The venerable original Condor ran three 2½ trips today, at 9 am 12 noon and 3 pm. Again we had mirror glass seas, crystal clear blue water, and a hazy summer-like warm sun. Great sightings were enjoyed by everyone on board. Here’s the breakdown:
On the 9am adventure we ran west from Santa Barbara Harbor until we located a pair of nice gray whales on their northbound migration through our Channel. The pair of whales fluked up a lot. Not long thereafter we also found a single gray whale which became quite friendly with the boat and made one very close approach to our bow. Conditions were superb and sightings were very good. At least 200 long-beaked common dolphins were also part of the morning show.
At noon we also ran west and found 2 different gray #whales about 2 miles south of Hope Ranch. All three of us, the Condor and the two whales, “swam” side-by-side for several miles in the clear, glassy water. After turning around and slowly heading back towards the Harbor, we encountered another pair of gray whales. A handful, perhaps 5, long-beaked common dolphins were seen on this trip.
Although I was not personally on the 3pm trip (of course) it turned out to have seen quite a spectacular display from gray whales AND a humpback whale. They watched 3 gray whales, and as you know, one of them breached in plain view of its fans on the Condor. The humpback rolled around and did a series of pectoral fin slaps; this initially is what caught the crew’s eye. Upon arriving in the vicinity, the humpback whale breached fairly close to the boat twice and put an end to the dreamy, sleepy kind of afternoon we had been enjoying. Wow! It should also be noted that we rode along with 7 nice bottlenose dolphins just outside the Harbor.
3/5/15 - Gray Whales, Humpback Whale and Dolphins all at Once!
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Captain Scott and his crew left Santa Barbara Harbor at noon today for a single excursion out to whale land. Conditions were calm and sunny, and the whales were abundant. Out past the rigs where we hit the “mother lode” yesterday, the Condor found a total of 5 northbound gray whales, about 1,500 long-beaked common dolphins, and watched a single humpback whale (there were more humpbacks in the distance). At one point there were dolphins, the humpback and a gray whale right next to the boat at the same time. Oh, yeah, the humpback also breached to put the icing on a great trip today.
3/3/15 - Two Gray Whales Get Frisky
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
One trip today left the docks at 12noon for the Santa Barbara Channel. There was a moderate breeze at first, but then it calmed down quite a bit. We ran along the coast to the west and ultimately located a pair of gray whales heading northbound. One #whale was bigger than the other, but the smaller one was not a calf. The two migrated without much fanfare and we had great looks. Then, as we reached the end of our trip near the Goleta Pier, the two started spy hopping and rolling around. On the way back to the harbor a few long-beaked common dolphins came over and ran with the Condor. All in all it was a great trip on a day when the sky was bright and sunny with puffs of huge storm clouds here and there all around us.
2/28/15 - 12 Gray Whales & Some Breaching
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
With a supposed storm on the way, we were, in fact, treated to moderate seas and sunny skies. A moderate breeze kicked up later in the morning, but nothing to write home about. We actively watched 12 gray whales on our two trips. Most were northbound or ended up northbound after fooling us with a southbound trend, only to reverse course on us. Some disappeared and were never seen again by us. There were two nice breaching whales from different pods.
On the morning adventure we had 8 closely watched gray whales, and many many more spouts in the area that we did not have time to dwell on so I didn’t count them. The morning also featured a small group of long-beaked common dolphins (perhaps 10) and a few messed around with the whales. The afternoon trip had 4 more gray whales including the breaching whales, plus a very close up and personal visit by a California sea lion pup that swam over to the Condor and introduced itself.
Let it rain! We had a great day today on both trips.
2/26/15 - Breaching Gray Whale Steals Show
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
It was a drizzly overcast day, the modern southern California version of a “rain” storm, as the Condor searched for cetaceans today. Two southbound gray whales were spotted on the afternoon trip down east near the Carpenteria Oil Pier. The good news was that one of the #whales breached twice and it’s fan club on the Condor went wild. One of the pair ran alongside the boat for a while giving great looks. Perhaps 100 long-beaked common dolphins were also in the vicinity and put on a good show. The light breeze kept sea conditions very tolerable despite the sprinkles.
2/11/15 - Condor Express ... Spring Schedule Change.
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Please note that our annual schedule change for the Spring season takes effect this Saturday, February 14 (Valentine’s Day). That means that we’ll run 3 trips a day, 2 1/2 hours per trip. Trips depart SEA Landing at 9am, 12noon and 3pm. The purpose of this change every year is to enable a choice of times for our passengers to watch the regular annual northbound gray whale migration along with other species of whales and dolphins that are in the area.
2/11/15 - Nine Gray Whales and Dolphins A-Plenty
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Second Captain and deckhand Mike spotted the first pair of gray whales about 2 miles south of Santa Barbara Harbor. We had great looks as they headed for Mexico. Before long, First Captain Mike had spouts in his binoculars and soon we were watching our second pair of grays. It was a very sunny and warm day on the Santa Barbara Channel and a heat wave is forecast for the next two or three days.
After a nice time with the second pair of grays we encountered the first of two separate pods of long-beaked common dolphins. We estimated around 2,000 animals total were seen today. Many mother dolphins had calves with them which was great to see in the clear blue water and bright sunshine. As we turned back to the west, First Captain Mike saw two more whales heading east, but these two were rather stealthy and only permitted a brief glimpse.
Just outside the Harbor on our way in we had a single spout a few hundred yards west of us, and this was our 9th of the trip. Needless to say we were all ecstatic about the day and the wonderful gray whales.
2/5/15 - 5 Gray Whales and 500 Dolphins on a Summer Day in February
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Summer-like conditions prevailed in the Santa Barbara Channel today with super clear water, sunny skies, no wind and a glassy surface. Not long after leaving the Harbor a trio of gray whales was spotted heading down the coast for Baja California. It was a close-knit group with 2 large and 1 small whale that synchronized their down and up time. These were very focused migrating whales and their down times consisted of travelling just below the surface so everybody on the Condor could see them most of the time through the clear blue water. Wow, what a view! Along the route we intersected two pods of long-beaked common dolphins, one large and one small group. All together we estimated about 500 dolphins seen today. We circled out to the south for a while to see what was happening in the hot zone we had yesterday, but did not find any other species of marine mammals there. On our way back to the Harbor we found a pair of medium sized gray whales heading for Baja, and they were much more shy than the trio we had earlier in the trip. All in all it was a fantastic day weather-wise and mamman-wise.
We continue to run two trips a day, one at 9am and one at 1pm. This Saturday will be a special, longer trip running from 10am - 230pm. Hope to see you on board.
2/4/15 - Humpback, Minkes, Commons and Bottlenose on a Fine Day
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Captains Mike and Scott took the Condor south to an area which has been very productive over the past few days. On the way out of Santa Barbara Harbor we passed the bait barge on its moorings with one Pacific harbor seal and one California sea lion hauled out on it. A perfect opportunity to show the vast differences between the two species of pinnipeds. Just outside the buoys we were greeted by a small group of 5 or 6 inshore bottlenose dolphins.
Getting back to the pinnipeds, we saw California sea lions on the buoys and practically everywhere we went today. Several drifting giant kelp paddies in deep water had a harbor seal resting and hiding in them. The first whales we saw were two Minke whales, one larger than the other. They were moving in random directions but were great to see on the mirror glass surface. Many long-beaked common dolphins were scattered across the zone. Many paid us a visit, some just went about their apparent foraging.
Towards the end of the trip there was one large adult humpback whale, and it fluked up on every dive. A great way to round out a wonderful trip with a wide variety of marine mammals.
1/28/15 - The "Original" Condor Flies Back Home
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
While the Condor Express continues its maintenance in the boat yard, with some delays over getting parts and the usual stuff, the "original" Condor will return to Santa Barbara this week and run whale watch trips. Regular readers should recall that this happened a few years ago, as the Condor Express team does not want anyone to miss out on this epic gray whale migration. Gray whale numbers are way up, even surpassing last year which was itself a record year.
The Condor will run 2 trips a day during its short stay this time in Santa Barbara, one trip departs at 9am and the other 1pm. Each trip will last approximately 3 1/2 hours, and the first trip is scheduled for this coming Saturday, January 31.
1/23/15 - Update from the Boatyard
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Our regular annual boat maintenance continues according to plan. Sanding, grinding, painting, replacing worn out parts (all the normal stuff we do while we are in the yard) is moving along. Things in the boatyard (and perhaps elsewhere in life) seem to take a bit longer sometimes than planned.
This time we had a hard time finding that special hull cleaner that takes off layers of dolphin breath, but we have it and are "on the job." The entire crew of the Condor Express is busy working long days and some weekend days too to get all the little things finished.
I know the marine mammals all miss seeing the twin hulls of the Condor out there in the Santa Barbara Channel every day. And we miss them too! Thank you for being a loyal fan of the Condor Express as we continue with our chores. We'll keep you posted periodically . . . stay tuned!
1/5/15 - Humpback Whales, Gray Whales, Dolphins and So Much More!
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
We left the Santa Barbara Harbor entrance buoy and its compliment of 4 California sea lions behind at 1015am heading south. At 1035 we came upon a dinghy/rowboat derelict and drifting in the Santa Barbara Channel. It looked like the painter was completely frayed and the boat had come loose from its mother ship. Captain Dave reported it's CF numbers to Coast Guard sector LA and later we heard that another boat from the harbor had retrieved it. It is always spooky to see a ghost boat at sea, even if it is a very small one. Not far from the dinghy a friendly Pacific harbor seal was on the surface and watched the Condor Express go by. At 1040am a large mob of California sea lions were actively feeding and had air support from a variety of seabirds. Ten minutes later second captain, Eric Eagle Eyes, had spotted a tall spout which turned out to be Scarlet, our local homeguard humpback #whale. Scarlet was all business today and had long down times, so we continued south. Not long after leaving Scarlet, the first batch of an all day parade of long-beaked common dolphins passed by the boat. By the end of the day we estimated at least 750 of these #dolphins were closely watched.
Our luck took an upturn around 1115am as we encountered a mother humpback and her medium-small calf. We followed alongside and had great looks, but like Scarlet, they had long bottom times and were rather business-like. At least 3 more humpback spouts were seen in the same mid-Channel region. As our luck continued to improve, at 12noon we came upon a large female gray whale with a newborn calf. The calf was very tiny, as you can see in the photograph above, and still had the folds across its body from being cooped up in mom's womb for approximately a year. The body was brownish and very smooth without barnacle or amphipod infestations. We had the good fortune to be able to keep a respectful distance but still get fantastic looks at this tiny newborn gray whale. We wondered if we might have been the first people to see this little whale. We only stayed a short while to give the two whales their space, and soon we were off to the seacliffs of Santa Cruz Island and a visit to that wonder of geology: the Painted Cave. The California sea lions were still hauled out on the rocky cliffs inside the mouth of the cave.
As we left Santa Cruz and the cave we spotted 4 adult gray whales traveling together to the east. They looked like they were practicing their synchronized swimming for the cetacean olympics with less than one minute beneath the surface followed by several mighty spouts and then fluking up practically every time. I took a photograph of the ocean surface with all the footprints which looked like some kind of abstract art. On the way home, short on time, we could not stop but did see several other spouts all across the Channel. It was another sunny day with zero swells, it started out glassy and ended with a very light breeze....fantastic! The Condor Express is hauling out this week for its bi-annual Coast Guard maintenance and inspections. Our next whale watch trips start January 23.
1/2/15 - 4 Gray Whales (2+2) and 3 Humpback Whales and Both Species of Common Dolphins
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Captain Dave cleared the Santa Barbara Harbor breakwater at 10:08am and you could see from Boney Ridge near Malibu all the way to San Miguel Island. In a word, it was pristine! What gorgeous conditions to find spouts, both large and small. At 10:58am, on the northern edge of what we call "mid-Channel" we located our first 2 southbound migrating gray whales and had great looks. They meandered here and there but trended east. Anyone who thinks their migration is a straight line hasn't seen these whales.
Dave moved us south on a course for Santa Cruz Island, but at 11:20am we stopped for three very showy humpback #whales. The largest was the female we call Scarlet (due her prominent scar which I've described and photographed in previous chapters), and she, along with two more, milled around the southern edge of the "mid-Channel" zone. There were no deep dives or long bottom times today, in fact one of the whales with white pectoral fins tended to take a breath then hang a foot or two beneath the surface until it was time to take another breath. And so on.
Given the clarity of the blue water, this made taking great photographs of this animal a cinch. We were running into small pods of long-beaked common dolphins all morning and some of the pods may have possibly annoyed Scarlet. Out of no where she gave us all a mighty monster tail throw that send seawater flying high and far.
Onward to Santa Cruz Island. About a mile north of the sea cliffs we found 2 more southbound migrating gray whales and their tall spouts were magnified by the backlight of our bright sun. These spouts were framed by the dark sea cliffs and the whole scene was both fabulous and dynamic.
At Santa Cruz we toured the sea cliffs of the western end of the island. Sea conditions were very flat and calm with only a very slight breeze, so very very close and personal looks inside the world famous Painted Cave were possible. About 5 California sea lion pups had scaled up the cliffs inside the cave and were sleeping (until we arrived). Not long after leaving the island our final species of cetacean was observed: a large herd of highly animated short-beaked common #dolphins. We watched for quite a while then headed back to Santa Barbara. What a day! We are running open public whale watch trips like this on Saturday and Sunday, then we are in the boatyard for our annual maintenance and Coast Guard inspections, hoping to be back in full service again on January 23. Hope to see you on board.
1/1/15 - 3 Humpback Whales and at Least 1,000 Dolphins
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Great sea conditions today and it's supposed to get even better the next couple of days. Captain Eric encountered 3 humpback #whales (one was Scarlet) around the same mid-Channel area where they have been feeding the past week or so. Although many of the bottom times were long today, the star of the humpback show was a whale that came directly over to the Condor Express, rolled on its side and hung around in that posture while all of its fans on the boat went crazy. The water was so clear you could see the eye of the beast looking directly up at you. Throughout the day a steady stream of long-beaked common dolphins that played around us and kept all eyes on the water. All in all a great trip for whales and #dolphins too.
Book your trip now while all this cetacean variety is with us in the Channel and great sea conditions persist.
As a reminder, Sunday will be our last open whale watch until approximately January 23, as the boat will be undergoing its annual maintenance and Coast Guard inspection. Hope to see you on board!
12/21/14 - Humpbacks feeding, a Minke whale and lots of dolphins
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Well, it's now 12/21 and the humpback whales are still out here feeding on anchovy schools alongside all the seabirds and common dolphins. Captain Eric headed out of Santa Barbara Harbor and before too long deckhand Augie spotted humpback spouts.
The Condor Express stayed with these animals for more than an hour as the #whales continued to make shallow sub-surface feeding runs. Black-vented shearwaters were also seen diving down in the clear blue water to attach the bait fish. Among the 3 closely watched humpback whales was our pal "Scarlet," a whale with propeller scars. The total number of long-beaked common dolphins was estimated at 250, and we had a Minke whale join the feeding and made some passes close to the boat.
Great looks were had in less than optimal ocean conditions. The winds were blowing from the west against a prevailing current from the east, which caused the surface chop to stand up a bit. An exhilarating day.
Our next public whale watch trip is Friday, December 26.
On behalf of everyone over here at the Condor Express, I wish each and every one of you a happy holiday season.
12/20/14 - Spectacular vistas, dolphins and a nice gray whale
> VIEW   
> HIDE  
Offshore winds and a light rain greeted us this morning in Santa Barbara, but the rain passed by quickly and we remained dry for the rest of the adventure. There were, however, larger squalls offshore that formed a basis of the spectacular vistas we enjoyed on this silvery day. The sun broke out around noon.
As we left Santa Barbara Harbor we watched 2 inshore bottle-nose dolphins that were fairly shy but we got a few good looks in before we continued out towards Santa Cruz Island. Around mid-Channel we watched a small pod of long beaked common dolphins, and a few more pods here and thereafter. Perhaps as many as 500 common #dolphins were seen in total.
After a futile search of the humpback and blue whale grounds from last weekend we turned west and ran parallel to Santa Cruz Island until we ventured into the Santa Cruz Channel (between Santa Rosa Island and Santa Cruz Island) looking for spouts.
Just after lunch was served deckhand Augie (or was it Captain Eric?) found a small sized, southbound gray whale moving eastward out of the Sta Cruz Channel and heading for the sea cliffs along the north face of Sta Cruz Island. This small gray had short down times of just a few minutes and good surface/spouting times. Viewing this migrating mammal with the cliffs of the Island in the background was spectacular, and a harbinger of things to come as the number of grays increases every day.
More spectacular vistas were enjoyed as we saw the now green western end of Sta Cruz Island with the east wind-driven clouds spilling over the crests of the mountain peaks.
Powered by ...  ... and ...