My first experience with whale watching occurred over twenty years ago when I took a personal day from my teaching position to chaperone my daughter’s class trip to Cape May, NJ, for a whale watch. Unfortunately, the fifth graders seemed more interested in running around the boat, but maybe that was because we did not see one whale! We witnessed a group of dolphins, however, but never spotted the elusive whale!
Such was not the case today! Bill and I were on the 10:30 trip from Provincetown on the Dolphin X, part of the Dolphin Fleet Whale Watch. It was a gorgeous day, forecasted to reach 90 degrees, but out on the water there was a pleasant breeze. We left the harbor in Provincetown and headed north to an area that has become a sanctuary for humpback whales.
After about an hour of travel we slowed down and the show began! Never have I seen such majesty as you can tell from the photographs. Humpbacks do not necessarily travel in pods and we learned that they are not rattled by the boat engines, so we could expect to see them anywhere at anytime. And as you can tell – we certainly did. The naturalist onboard talked throughout the entire voyage, but unfortunately we had trouble hearing him when the Dolphin X was moving at full throttle! When we slowed down, the naturalist directed our sight to the approaching humpbacks. We saw them spouting, gracefully swimming, and even witnessed a mother and her calf just floating next to each other hanging out!
The total three and a half hour experience was absolutely amazing – I have never witnessed anything like it! I did indeed feel like Ishmael in Moby Dick, but whereas he struggled to capture the whale with a fishing line, I strained to capture the perfect picture! I finally put the camera away so as to fully engage in the whale moment! Truly a wonderful way to spend our day off!
Following our whaling expedition, we strolled down Commercial Street in Provincetown, which has to be one of the very best people-watching locations anywhere! We opted for lunch at the Patio American Grill, which had been recommended to us by our “foodie” campground managers at Atlantic Oaks – they have yet to steer us wrong! The margaritas were thirst-quenching and the shrimp and fish tacos were delicious!
A day of sun, sea life, and sustenance…there’s no better way to spend our day off!
Stay Calm and Travel On…