Contrary to what might seem reasonable expectations, Foggy Bay was not foggy this morning. In fact, visibility was good, wind was light, and the sea was barely rippled across the ocean waters of Dixon Entrance. All delightful developments leading to a very comfortable day of cruising!
We saw more good birds today (the trip list is up to 21 species), but by far the best sighting of the day was the whales. Just by Green Island lighthouse we spotted a tremendous splash. It was a humpback whale breaching! And then three, and then eight, and frankly, it could have been ten or twelve humpbacks all engaged in cooperative feeding. They were “bubble netting”, rounding up a school of herring and then swimming up through the fish with their mouths wide open to engulf the lot. When the whales popped into the air the poor herring that had escaped their maws were set upon by the gulls. It was a genuinely spectacular sight, and the first time several of our crew had seen humpbacks. Bob and Cathy allowed that they were much bigger than the whales back home in Arkansas!
Leaving the whales to their fishy business, we cruised amongst the Moffat Islands, lovely, unspoiled isles. And since we were now in Canada, it seemed right and proper that we should see our first common loons, the signature bird of the Canadian dollar coin and so many other cultural touchstones. And then there were more whales! At least two were working the shoreline, lunging through the little fish. One rolled on its side, waving its huge pectoral fin in the air. It was like watching the best nature documentary for us, while no doubt the herring thought of it as a horror movie.
Venn passage, on the approach to Prince Rupert harbor, was dotted with eagles, perhaps an honor guard for our arriving fleet! We were welcomed equally warmly in the harbor itself at the new marina at the Atlin Terminal. As nice as the new docks are, it didn’t take long for everybody to head into town to sample the restaurants and pubs.