Memorial Day was threatening rain and there was a low fog that inhibited visibility out of the gate and to the Farallon Islands. I was as excited to see the Farallones as I was a whale, even if the jagged rock outcroppings 30 miles out of the gate where capped with low fog.
After idling a bit so we could see as much as we could see there, we motored on West, in search of yet deeper waters.
Entering this part of the Pacific felt like driving across a (cold) desert: there’s so much out there, but you have to really look and be in it to get just how much. A vast expanse of water and foggy horizon greeted us. The fog lifted a bit, the water was calm, and, our captain said, these conditions were optimal for whale viewing. We whale-less whale-watchers huddled in our storm coats and chewed on ginger gum, looking at the horizon for signs of spouting. We saw an albatross and another puffin, porpoises and auklets, more murres, seagulls floating on large seaweed ‘rafts’…but the whales, seen only a day previous, where foraging elsewhere. Evidently, a small percentage of whale-watching trips turn out this way (SF Whale-Watching graciously offers the next trip on them if you don’t see whales). Eventually we headed back across the water, toward the Golden Gate and shallower waters. But I felt energized rather than disappointed, and happy I have a make-up trip ahead of me.