San Jose del Cabo and Gorda Banks

Feb 09, 2019 - National Geographic Venture


It’s another beautiful day in Baja California!

Our day began in the towering company of the pinnacles, or “sea stacks” at Land’s End. Seeing these formations in the morning light, and in such rich detail, brought awe to our group. Out on the water, sport fishing boats zipped along while sea lions lounged along the many rock formations. We then made our way north to the charming town of San Jose del Cabo. While bird watching in the nearby estuary, we found an array of species including American coots, black-necked stilts, green-winged and cinnamon teals, hooded orioles, and the endemic Belding’s yellowthroat.

We afterward met for paletas in the town square and enjoyed the charming atmosphere of San Jose del Cabo. Underway yet again, we spotted several humpback whales in transit! Humpbacks gather in these waters to calve and breed during the winter months before migrating to northern latitudes for feeding. Further out, we found multiple whales actively slapping their pectoral fins at the surface and one individual breaching over and over for who knows how many times!

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About the Author

Emily Pickering

Naturalist/Expedition Diver

Emily was raised by two veterinarians in the mountains of Central Oregon, where she spent much of her time on the back of a horse dreaming about the sea. Her fascination was solidified by visits to the Oregon Coast Aquarium and summers spent gazing into tide pools and listening for killer whales off the coast of British Colombia.  

About the Videographer

David Pickar

Video Chronicler

David Pickar is a native of Portland, Oregon. He studied anthropology at the University of Oregon, then spent several years working as a field archaeologist. Participating in excavations in countries like Jordan, Belize and Italy and in every corner of the US, allowed him to witness culture and the environment from an unusual perspective.

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