Pacific Voyage, Baja California Sur

Mar 05, 2019 - National Geographic Venture


We spent the better part of the day sailing northward along the Pacific Coast of Baja California. Many of us were up well before the 8:30 wake-up call to catch the vibrant display of sun across the Baja Peninsula. Not long after dawn, we found ourselves in the company of common dolphins racing along the bow of our ship for the better part of thirty minutes! The beauty and grace of these animals was really something to see.

The cruising along Pacific today was exactly that—pacific, which is Spanish for calm.  The temperate waters afforded us plenty of time on deck to take in the rich Baja atmosphere. Fortune stuck again later that morning, after a sumptuous brunch, with the sighting of a blue whale. It was amazing to see this graceful leviathan come to the surface, blow its spout and recede into the mysterious world beneath. The whale was “only” 50’-60’ in length, making it a youngster. For perspective, adult blue whales may reach as much as 100 feet long and more than 180 tons!

Later in the day we passed a buoy with a line attached that had entrapped a sea turtle. So in keeping with our conservation ethic, the captain stopped the ship and sent out a rescue squad who were able to cut the turtle loose and set it free to roam the seas again and hopefully reproduce another generation of these beautiful animals. Viva Tortuga!

Following, our naturalist Dan put a plankton tow in the water and captured a live sample of the millions of microscopic and barely visible critters that we had been swimming with over the past few days.

We finished our day with humpback whale sighting far offshore and a fun and fascinating recap.  Not a bad way to conclude our fourth consecutive day of remarkable voyaging Among the Great Whales.

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About the Author

Larry Hobbs

Naturalist

Larry has been involved in marine mammal research and natural history education for over 45 years.  His undergraduate training is in zoology, with graduate work in marine biology.  He also holds a master’s degree in psychology and is a certified counselor in the State of Washington.  In addition to his academic training, Larry has spent many years at sea, including two years as mate or master aboard open-ocean sailing ships.  Larry is a professional photographer and his photographs have appeared in Europe, Asia, Australia and Mexico as well as the United States.

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