Our first full day was mostly cloudy but full of wonderful surprises. It started with Sergio Camacho our local pilot coming aboard National Geographic Sea Lion to guide us through the narrow and shallow Hull Canal, or “Canal de Santo Domingo” as it is known in Spanish. Along this four-hour trip, the ever-changing landscape of mangroves and sand dunes of the peninsula and Magdalena Island can really amaze you.
Besides being able to observe hundreds of different birds like double-crested cormorants, magnificent frigates, western seagulls or brown pelicans, we had the very lucky fortune of coming across a pack of coyotes roaming the island coast and a pod of bottlenose dolphins that accompanied us at the bow of the ship for a couple of minutes.
For those of us interested in saving memories and creating art with light, Jamie our naturalist and photo instructor gave us a presentation and introduction to wildlife photography.
Once we reached the town of Lopez Mateos, we thanked Sergio for his services and continued to the nearby “Boca de la Soledad” where we set anchor and started preparing ourselves for what we really came to do here: observe the majestic gray whales. This type of gray added all the life and grandeur to this very special first full day of activities where we all got the chance of seeing a dozen-or-so gray whales in the bay, the mouth and the ocean.
Getting back to the ship, the Super Bowl started and those football fans had the chance to watch it on the lounge’s screen. Simultaneously, “Los Coyotes” played on the upper deck with a beautiful Baja-style sunset behind them.