Whale Watching Adventures
Thursday, May 31, 2012 @ 03:39 PM
Kristina, Rob, Ashley and Lindsey recently went on a whale watching adventure on the Puget Sound with the Island Adventure Whale Watching Tour company. Read each of their descriptions of the whale encounters below.
Being from Spokane, I visit Seattle about once a year and am always looking for new things to do around the area. When Ashley told me about going whale watching I was really excited! The Island Adventure whale watching tour provided an incredibly memorable experience that was easily accessible. I was a bit skeptical that they were able to guarantee a whale sighting but soon realized that their expert knowledge of the migration patterns made it fast and easy to track the whales. The naturalist on-board provided a wealth of knowledge about many native animals. The three-hour tour was just the right amount of time to get a tasty refreshment at the snack bar, track several whales, and chat with friends on a warm, sunny Pacific Northwest day. I would highly recommend the Island Adventure whale watching tour as a great way to get on the water without owning a boat!
When my friend Lindsey told me she was going to visit Seattle I knew that a really cool experience would be whale watching. She and I left Seattle and drove for about 45 minutes up to Everett where we met Kristina and Rob in the parking lot by the dock. After we boarded the ship we immediately got in line for the food because, well we like to eat! Linds and I shared a chili cheese hot dog and it was pretty darn tasty. They had quite an array of dishes to choose from, mostly with chili, that would be amazing on a cold cloudy day. Luckily for us the sun was out and it was a beautiful and warm April day. We saw a bunch of grey whales which was especially cool for me since the only whales I have seen in the wild are Orcas whales. We saw them spout, spyhop, show some tail and dive deep (we also learned some cool terms). One even came pretty close to the boat but went under the surface before I had my camera ready. Overall it was the perfect day and it ended even more perfectly with dinner and drinks on the deck at Anthony's Home Port in Everett.
My girlfriend is always planning random activities/adventures for us to do and being the good boyfriend I am, I follow. I will admit that, while her heart is in the right place, not everything she plans is a hit. There was a river rafting adventure in Wenatchee that was a complete disaster. (A run in with a goat and the world’s worst river guide were a few of the weekend highlights) So when she came to me and said that our next escapade would be whale watching in the Puget Sound, I was a little hesitant. It was mid-April and we were coming out of the coldest and wettest winter on record. I pictured us on a tiny boat fighting for shelter from the elements with other unfortunate boyfriends. In a last ditch effort to get out of it I reminded her that she has a pretty bad case of motion sickness, she assured me it would be fine. The morning of our sailing was a beautifully sunny day and I was surprised by the short drive to Everett. I don’t know why I thought it took longer than 45 minutes? When we arrived at the dock I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the boat we were going to be on was actually a ship 101 feet long and USCG certified. Once we boarded, wafting aromas of every man’s dream filled our senses. There was chili on this boat! We sat down and enjoyed chili covered everything. I had a chili burger and bowl and she had the chili Quesadilla, both delicious. Somewhere after the boarding and the chili we had entered the Saratoga Passage. It didn’t take long for a voice to come over the loud speaker directing our attention to eleven o’clock and we saw our first spout. Our captain told us that the blow or spout shoots nearly 12 feet high and expels 400 liters of air in a single blast. I really got into it and found it exciting to look for the ‘footprint’; the disturbed water it leaves on the surface of the ocean when the whale flicks its tail. We made our way around the passage and saw a total of four Greys. Because of the ships large size we were able to get an excellent view from any vantage point. If your girlfriend asks if you want to go whale watching, say yes and make sure it’s with Island Adventure.
I love the Pacific Northwest and have lived in the greater Seattle area my whole life. I am always looking for new ways to explore the region and most recently experienced whale watching. This is always something I have wanted to do but have been a little hesitant as I assumed I would have to drive for two hours to get on a ship that cost way too much and MAYBE see a whale… not to mention I get seasick. So when I heard that Island Adventures offers a three hour tour (insert Gilligan’s Island joke here) that leaves out of Everett with a 100% whale spotting guarantee, I was in! I went with my boyfriend and two girlfriends and we all had a great time. The price was very reasonable, the staff was extremely knowledgeable, the ship was huge which helped prevent me from getting sick, the weather was perfect and we saw tons of action in the water. I think there was chili too ;-)
Whale Watching Terminology:
Show Some Tail
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