Thursday, June 9th

Today we headed north to see J-Pod. They came through our territory
last evening and went up to the Frazier River through Active Pass
north of Salt Spring island. The whales can travel 80 to 100 miles a
day looking for Salmon. They are very muscular ,strong swimmers. They
can go 20 knots when porpoising along.
We departed the Orcas Landing as we cruised past Westsound we looked
at Turtle head and Turtle back we shared a little local lore.
Passing Bell Island just before Pole Pass, we saw a Stellar Sea lion
with a very large octopus. Quite a wrestling match. The Sea Lion
slammed the octopus back and forth. It was a big one. Harbor seals
came over and tried to get some titbits.
We had a group of local school children onboard and this was quite
an exciting sight.
As we continued out toward Flat top we saw a large ship on the
horizon. We timed it’s vector and crossed in front of it, toward
Saturna Island.

Up to boiling reef north Saturna Is.we saw at least a hundred harbor
seals hauled out. Then we had a call from a Vancouver buddy boat .
They said there is a lead whale way up ahead. Then all of a sudden
“Thar she blows !” It was J-8 Speiden, an 82 year old female.
We got into a rhythm off to the side at 200 yards. Soon we could
see J-2, 100 year old Granny, “Ruffles” Mom. Then J-26 Mike her great
grandson. Next was J-19 Sachi and J- 41 Eclipse, nominated after our
company, for donations we gave to the Center of Whale Research early on.
As we drifted along, they were travelling about 5 to 6 knots. In the
afternoon light they passed us by , near the Java islands. We watched
them disappear to the south. We crossed the straights back toward to
Flat top and passed Jones island.
Heading back toward Orcas it was another adventure aboard the Orcas
Express. Everyone had said they had a fantastic trip.

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