Just before breakfast, we anchored off Whitney Island, a very special destination as we were the first vessel in the National Geographic/Lindblad fleet to visit this island. Perhaps appropriately, we were escorted to the island by a pod of 8-10 Dall’s porpoise who crisscrossed in front of our bow as if they were celebrating our arrival. Off to port we saw the blow of a humpback whale and on the beach, four bald eagles silently watched as the anchor dropped.

The island was spectacular. One round of exploration involved hiking through the forest and ‘crabbing’ over the rich intertidal zone. The other exploratory round was a Zodiac tour along the shore where we observed the rich intertidal from the sea and learned about, and tasted, the dominant kelps.

After lunch, we cruised through Stephens Sound in search of wildlife and soon encountered a widely dispersed assemblage of humpbacks. Although they remained some distance from the ship, we were still able to observe lob tailing and numerous exposed flukes prior to a dive. And the finale to this very special day was observing a male and female orca who lingered along the shoreline and simultaneously seeing three humpbacks in the distance.