Last summer I wasn’t able to find A46 Kaikash in the Inside Passage, he was further up north, too far for me to reach him that day, but I was able to talk to a guy who had met him the year before, when he was still swimming with his brother Cracroft. It was sad and also comforting.
Later in the afternoon the Nodales channel was beautiful and bumpy, and being the orcas so far away the porpoises took the time to race our zodiac for half an hour just for the fun of it, and two humpbacks were so relaxed and happy that they cruised for hours along the coast and breached dozens of times. I had never seen a humpback breach before in my life.
We watched three blackbears in three distinct beaches. We watched sea lions.
I have seen many whales and dolphins in the past ten years or so, all wild. The last time I saw a captive dolphin it was in 1982, horrible experience which at least taught me two very important things very early in my life, one, never pay to see a wild animal perform tricks, two, never pay to listen to bad music. Three, there’s obviously a three, never never pay for the two combined.
So far I had avoided even visiting the southern residents, because I did not want to disturb them. Their population is no longer viable after having been decimated by SeaWorld live captures in the Puget Sound and because of water toxicity (metals, they mess with fertility) and decline of salmon (human-made dams preventing salmons from reaching their spawning grounds). The southern residents really don’t need me to bring more boats and noise. Except maybe they do. After the Blackfish movie maybe they do need more whale watching. So out I went on a very flat sea, and I saw L41 Mega.
Later on, while we were considering the sadness of the barren coastline, the toxicity of the waters and the gloomy vicinity of the Puget Sound, we spotted a pod and the guide was puzzled because he could not recognize them. After some radioing we all agreed it was a pod of transient orcas, which I really wasn’t expecting to see. Be it good news or bad news I don’t know, but they were a sight. It was five of them, including a large individual as well as a calf.
This is actually a post about 2016 resolutions, so I had better come to the point. A lot of amazing things have happened to me mostly because I went through a lot of hassle to make them happen and because I could count on some very precious support. Planned beauty is good, but it’s the unexpected I need to carry into 2016. How can I find again the feeling of being totally absorbed by a mental and physical task, but not during some hike of a lifetime, more like on a weekly basis?
2016 is the year I’m becoming a slackliner.