Thursday, June 24, 2010

Humpbacks, Porpoise, Sea Otters … and a BIG “Oh My!!!”

Monday, June 14

Cruising Icy Strait, we were hoping we’d be able to show Cade his first whale.

And sure enough, no sooner had we pulled anchor and navigated out of Coot Cove Monday morning, we were treated to a pod of humpbacks frolicking in the morning water. Cade was thrilled and spent most of the day with binoculars in hand watching for spouts or at the bow with his parents scanning the horizon.

By noon we also were entertained by a group of Dall’s porpoise riding our bow wake, crossing back and forth in front of the boat. Everyone was hanging over the bow, trying to catch photos of the porpoise. They are colored black and white, much like orcas, and are nearly impossible to photograph due to their incredible speed. But it is quite captivating watching them cross back and forth in front of the boat as if in a high stakes tag-team race to see who can cross the bow first.

Later that day, as we were making our way into Dundas Bay just outside Glacier Bay, we began to see sea otters all through the waters … floating on their backs taking a snooze, with eagles flying overhead and roosting in trees along the shores. Truly a wildlife paradise!

But perhaps … not the best place to anchor! There was lots of current running through Dundas Bay and, in retrospect, we didn’t go far enough into the bay to set anchor.

The next morning, thank goodness Roland was up early because the anchor broke loose from its hold around 5:30 a.m. and the current was taking us right into the rocks. OH MY!!!!

Fast action on the part of the captain got the anchor up and the boat out of harm’s way …. But a lesson learned … do NOT anchor in waters with strong currents, no matter how good the holding is supposed to be.

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About Engelenbak

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Engelenbak is a custom-built 62-foot steel trawler ... designed to cruise anywhere in the world.