Monday, August 6, 2012

Of Puffins and Whale Snot


My experience of whale watch cruises in New Jersey is that they take you out, show you some dolphins, fail to find any whales, and then give you a coupon for half off the next cruise to make up for your disappointment.

So it wa a refreshing change of pace to sign onto Gatherall's Puffin & Whale Watch in Bay Bulls.  They took us out, found a minke whale, then took us further out and found several humpbacks feeding.  They seemed to find our presence interesting, for they came over to check us out.  One passed directly under  the boat.  Another -- and this has got to be the highlight of the trip for me -- spouted right next to the boat.  It was so close that when I looked down I saw a rainbow and when I looked up the mist passed over my face.

No man with whale snot on his glasses can be entirely unhappy.

Then a quick swing around Gull Island which has thousands upon thousands of nesting puffins and murres.  So another lifetime desire -- to see a puffin -- checked off on the list.

Do you gather that I'm happy?  I'm very happy.  When we stopped for lunch, we saw more whales. Nobody can say that Newfoundland is ungenerous in her bounty.

And . . .

I'm back to adventuring in a few minutes, so there's no time to relate all our adventures.  Suffice it to say:  Many.   I'll post again tomorrow.

Above;  Mostly I didn't take pictures.  I was enjoying the experience too much to bother.  But on the way out I did snap the above.  There's an entire humpback whale under that fin.



ckovacs said...

Glad to hear that you saw puffins and humpbacks; the excursion out of Bay Bulls is reliable for both this time of year. Today the bald eagle returned and sat on a tree branch overlooking the dock. We thought it was eyeing the puppy as a snack, but maybe it was looking for the four Americans!

Michael Swanwick said...

Americans must look like easy pickings for the wildlife here. I notice, for instance, a great divergence between how Americans and Newfoundlanders regard moose.