Sunday, May 15, 2011
Birthday Trip to Seward, Part 2
Woke up to a dreary and rainy day in Seward. Made our way over to the Major Marine Tours to sign in for our whale watching boat tour. Got our tickets for a 4 hour cruise and made our way into line for the boat. We settled in at our table and listened to the captain tell us what to expect on the tour, including what marine life we might see and also warning of the choppy seas that we could expect. I had taken my motion sickness meds, Greg forgot to take any Dramamine, and Jacque opted not to take any. We sailed out of Resurrection Bay and soon spotted many sea otters playing in the surf. As we got out into the ocean, the waters became quite a bit rougher. It became difficult to even walk around in the boat. As we sailed on, we saw many beautiful unspoiled wild islands along the journey. You just expected to see a big ole grizz along the coast, but one never materialized. We did get to see plenty of gulls, kittywakes, cormorants, and colonies of loud sea lions. By the time we got to the sea lions, I wasn't feeling my best and had to get out onto the deck. It was cold and rainy, but seemed to help with the motion sickness I was going to experience. Greg joined me there for awhile as the choppy oceans also got to him and many others on the boat. Needless to say, I spent the last 2 hours of the tour out in the cold and rain with Greg there with me most of the time. Jacque got those 2 hours of peace inside the boat, although she later admitted that it made her a bit queasy also. We were both on the deck when we spotted the spouts of the first whales. These massive creatures were fast! They didn't give us an opportunity to get even one photo op! They were so close to the boat I had an awesome view from the deck. They rolled gracefully with the waves for several minutes and then left our area quickly. At first, we thought these were humpback whales but the captain later declared they were fin whales. We had never even heard of fin whales but they are the second largest whale, second only to blue whales in size. It was time to turn and head back and we were accompanied by playful Dall porpoises jumping from the water on the return trip. These look like miniature orcas, or killer whales, with their black and white coloring. They kept us company for quite awhile on the way back. They were so quick and fun to watch. After we docked and returned to the room, I had a hot shower to get feeling back into my hands and feet. Then I took a much needed nap while Greg sat outside on the balcony and enjoyed the ocean view.