We awoke this morning to find the National Geographic Sea Bird floating near Baird Glacier. The air was decidedly chilly, but the sun was out and lighting up this glorious bay. Steep mountains surrounded the ship and in the distance we could see the snout of the retreating glacier. After a scrumptious breakfast, we boarded Zodiacs and headed through the milky waters towards our morning adventure.
We landed on a raised ridge that ran through the braided stream created by the outflow of the glacier. As we picked our way along the rocky path, we nibbled on beach greens and beach rye. Lupine was abundant in large patches which made for great images before we found ourselves at the edge of a larger body of water. Many took a moment to soak in the scale of the place while others reflected on the enormity of all we have seen this past week in Southeast Alaska.
Once back on the ship and after another delicious lunch, Sheri and the Purser gave us our final instructions for disembarkation the following day. Val opened the Global Gallery after lunch so we had one more shopping opportunity before we headed off to our cabins to begin packing.
In mid-afternoon, as we cruised through calm seas towards Juneau, Tamsen spotted a humpback whale that was active on the surface. He rolled on his side and slapped his fins on the water for us while the shutters of our camera clicked away. We spotted more whales in the distance and sailed over for a look. Then we spotted more and more whales. Soon there were more than twenty whales surrounding the ship. Some were tail-slapping, some where fin-slapping, and one breached repeatedly. We were giddy with whales. It was a fantastic show that lasted for several hours. As Kim said, “The Captain brought us a big bowl of whale soup.” What a way to finish up a spectacular adventure.
Dinner was a raucous event capped off with an introduction to the Hotel and Deck Crew by the Captain. We enjoyed another wonderful dessert in the lounge while the Guest Slide Show played for our enjoyment. It was an exciting week aboard the Sea Bird and one that we will not soon forget.