Weather, whales and winds

Last night we were warned of gale force winds so we slept in with the intention of taking a rest day and waiting out the weather. But we woke up to rain and calm waters. Since packing up camp takes a significant effort and once we are on the water we have very limited ability to get off due to the rocky coastline, we take an easy morning and watch the skies. We eat pancakes, tweak our boats, stretch and read. In the afternoon the weather hadn’t changed, still rainy and calm so we decide to pack up and head out with hopes to make our next camp before twilight. We are headed for an islet on Rattenbury Point. It seems a luxury to have an entire island to ourselves and we are looking forward to it.

It’s drizzling as we paddle, the raindrops sound like a thousand bells as they hit the water. Its magical.

As we paddle around a bend, into more open waters we hear what sounds like thunder. I look at Jeremy a bit confused as this isn’t stormy weather. We scan the horizon and see not storm clouds, but a mother and calf whale. The mother is leaping out of the water and slapping back down on her side. The sound reverberates off the cliffs and sounds like thunder. We paddle towards them and the mother continues leaping and jumping as we watch. Jeremy is yelling with excitement and can hardly hold his camera steady. I forget I even have a camera and just sit there in awe as they come closer and closer. It seems unreal to be able to experience this. Eventually they move on, diving into deeper waters and we continue.

The closer we get to our islet, the more the wind and waves pick up. It’s not dangerous amounts of wind, but it does make paddling difficult. We finally round a corner to see our camp. We land, unpack our boats and set up camp. As we lay in the tent satisfied with a hard day and incredible sights, we hear whales just off shore blowing large exhales of breath.

A perfect serenade to send us into a well deserved sleep.


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