Pacific, Hull Canal, & Isla Magdalena

Jan 31, 2018 - National Geographic Sea Bird


It was a very early morning on board the National Geographic Sea Bird today! Many of us sat on the bow between 4am and 7am, hoping to glimpse the lunar eclipse. The weather gods did not smile upon us, however, and despite lovely calm seas and our friendly local astronomer Dr. Tyler Nordgren, there was a persistent layer of clouds. The sky did noticeably darken as the eclipse entered totality and was completely within the shadow of the Earth, but otherwise we could not see the moon itself, or any stars. For diehards who waited through the hours, however, there was a brief moment when the moon passed through a narrow band of open sky, and rewarded those who stayed awake with a brief view of the moon after totality had ended.

For the rest of the morning, we sailed north up the peninsula, enjoying views of humpback and gray whales, as well as occasional sea turtles. Our naturalist Pete Pederson gave a talk on gray whales, an excellent preparation for our next few days here with the (hopefully) friendly whales. Before lunch we entered Bahia Magdalena and were immediately greeted by views of numerous whales in the area – a good sign for what might be in store for us! Our local pilot climbed aboard to guide us through the narrow and shallow channel between Isla Magdalena and the peninsula, and for a few hours following lunch we cruised a lovely stretch of mangroves looking for dolphins, whales, and birds.

Once anchored, we hit the beach armed and ready for a beautiful sunset. Isla Magdalena has a fantastic stretch of sand dunes, and guests strolled the rippling sand with cameras in hand as the sun dipped low on the horizon. Tonight we dream of whales as the moon rises to the east.

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About the Author

Emily Mount

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Emily grew up in Niwot, Colorado and Pullman, Washington. Her love of nature began as a child during family vacations spent hiking, camping and exploring the mountains and deserts of the west. In contrast to her outdoors interests, Emily pursued an intensive young career as a classical violinist, culminating in degrees in history and music performance at the University of Washington.  

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