Wednesday, March 11, 2009

a whale of a time

Santa Barbara is an inredible place to live for a lot of reasons. One is the closeness of the wild things of nature. A short hike into the mountains and you're in mountain lion country. A 22 mile ride in a boat and you can visit the least visited national pak - the Channel Islands National Park. A drive to Carpinteria and you can see the seals give birth. A drive up the coast and you can see elephant seals mating. Stand on the beach and watch the dolphins swim by...

The coastline runs east-west rather than north-south and there are a series of islands - the Channel Islands about 22 miles off the coast. Two currents, one from the north and one from the south meet in the channel. All of this adds up to wonderful feeding grounds for whales and because they migrate north-south, the curve in the coast here brings them very close to land.

This year, one or perhaps two adolescent whales found themselves very close to land... in the harbor as close as 30 feet from shore. They're feeding right at the mouth of the harbor and wandering in towards the marina. Here's a little video of one of them. Amazing!

1 comment:

Dave Miller said...

Roy, I was not aware they came that close to the shore! Amazing.