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Saturday
Jul212018

Whale Watching Excursion

Thursday morning, we headed down to the old harbor in Reykjavík⁩ to board a boat for a whale watching excursion.  The port was picturesc and lined with old shops and cafes.  Seawead lined the walls of the harbor.  Chris, climbed down a ladder on one of the harbor walls and felt the temperature of the water.  He said it felt to be around 50°F.  The waters in the harbor were very still and clear.

The morning started out overcast, but soon the clouds cleared to reveal a beautiful blue sky and the first sun that the locals had seen in a while.  The local joke was that it has only rained twice this summer - once for 25 days and once again for 20 days.

The boat ride out into deep waters didn't take long.  There was a northern wind and up on the deck, it was quite chilly.

The whale watcher for our tour was a nice lady who sat in a special lookout high up and towards the front of the boat.  She soon started calling out sightings using the traditional hour positions on a clock.  We saw a bunch of the fast, unpredictable minke whales.  There was at least one hump back whale that kept showing up.  People saw some dolphins and a ton of birds.  The whale watcher would guide the boat towards groupings of birds.  When the birds became very active, especially on the surface of the water, that indicated that there was a large school of fish.  That meant that they were most likely being chased to the surface by whales underneath.

Tanner caught a nice picture (on this page) of the tail of a humpback whale as it was starting a dive.  I caught the dorsal fin of a minke whale.  We mostly took a ton of pictures of empty water because we often could not bring our cameras around to focus on the spots that the whale watcher was calling out fast enough.  So, we ended up seeing a lot of whales - but catching only a few on camera.

 

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