Author Archive

Orca, Grey, Humpback…all in the last month!


July has treated us EXTREMELY well!!! We feel absolutely spoiled rotten! Not only have we had members J Pod, L Pod, and transients around, but we’ve had the pleasure of two humpback whales that decided to stay in the area MUCH longer than normally anticipated. To top it all off – we spotted a grey whale on yesterday’s tour! It’s the most beautiful time of the year with this many whales out and about. We’d love to take you out and show you!









Leave a Comment

Transients! They’re here!

The transients are here and they have been putting on quite the display for us this past week! We’ve seen numerous tail slaps, spy hops, and even a few breaches out there. We’ve been seeing seals galore, and have had some incredible bird watching, too! The summer season is really starting to pick up, so be sure to make your reservations soon if you plan on coming out within the next couple of months. Spaces are going fast!





Leave a Comment

Humpbacks In The Area!


This time of year is always so magical here in the San Juan Islands. We’ve recently been lucky enough to have a couple of humpback whales in the area – a mother and her young calf. Known for their rounded backs and deep dives, it is truly majestic to see their large tails come fully above the water line. Unlike orca whales, which will migrate in order to follow the fish, the humpbacks follow a set migration pattern during the year. Here in the San Juans, it’s typical to see them here as they pass through, but not for very long! IMG_8346




Leave a Comment

The residents are still here!


IMG_7636June 06, 2016
Another great day aboard the Odyssey with resident orcas! Today wasn’t quite as hot as yesterday, but the whale watching was on fire. We again had our resident orcas in the area. We also were able to spot a humpback whale from a distance. We saw a mix of J pod and L pod today. The first group of whales that we saw were the “Cookie Crew”. This group is made up of Oreo, who is the mother and her offspring, Doublestuff and Cookie! We also saw a group of L pod whales. It was another great day here in the San Juan Islands!

Leave a Comment

Residents are here!


IMG_7282This morning, 06/05/16, our resident orcas returned to the area. It was the first time since May 11th that they have visited us. J pod, parts of K pod and parts of L pod all came back! We watched the L4 family group and the L47 family group. We also saw L90 and 92. There were about 19 total members of L pod that we fortunate enough to see in the natural environment. What an amazing day. The weather was absolutely spectacular and we wound up circumnavigating San Juan Island. At one point we were able to deploy our hydrophone and hear the whales vocalizing and communicating with each other. It sure was nice to see our residents!

Captain Pete

Leave a Comment

Whale Soup!!!


Every once in a while, here in the San Juan Islands, we get an abundance of whales. We often refer to this occurrence as “whale soup”. Today, we had 24 transient orcas and two humpback whales in the area. We were watching a group of transients known as the T123s, when we received word that over twenty other orcas were spotted, not too far away. On our way to see them, we stopped off and watched a humpback show its flukes. We saw some Steller sea lions basking in the sun as well. We were even lucky enough to see a peregrine falcon and its two chicks. We then proceeded to the large group of transients and what a group. It was the same large group that has been traveling together for the last week or so. What a great trip!!

Leave a Comment

Amazing day with transients


Today, May 16th 2016, was an exceptional day aboard the Odyssey. After the tour, the crew all agreed that is was probably the best day of the year. We got to spend almost and hour and a half with over 16 transient orcas. We had the T36As, 65As and Bs, 99s, 123s and T93 and 97, a pair of large, adult, male orcas that travel together. They got really active at one point with lots of porpoising, breaching and lots of very social behavior. We even got a chance to put our hydrophone in the water and listen to them vocalizing. What a day!

Leave a Comment

Aboard the Odyssey: August 30th, 2014

August 30, 2014


J pod AND K pod!

What an outstanding day on the water! We headed down south through Cattle Pass and on to Eagle Point once again. On the way, we had an awesome view of some Steller Sea Lions on Whale Rock, as well as many harbor porpoise and seals.

About an hour into our tour we had our first orca sighting! Amazing photos, and a true highlight in watching J32 (Rhapsody) show off with some impressive tail slaps.

August, you’ve been outstanding. 🙂 Happy Labor Day!

~ Captain Pete, Melisa (Marine Naturalist) and Brittany (Marine Naturalist)

Leave a Comment

Aboard the Odyssey: August 19, 2014

August 19, 2014

This season has been one for the books. Every day is a new adventure, and with our amazing naturalists always giving their all, the memories and photos of 2014 Aboard the Odyssey is truly a blessing to be a part of.

Today was no different. We headed south through San Juan Channel to Cattle Pass and on to False Bay. It wasn’t long after that we encountered L pod and were greeted with some amazing activity. L84 (Nyssa), L72 (Racer) and L105 (Fluke) made the day particularly special, porpoising and providing great visibility. A couple hundred photos later, we cruised back into the harbor, blue skies all the way.

Tough job, right? 🙂

~ Captain Pete and the SJE Team

Leave a Comment

Aboard the Odyssey, July 11th: K13s, J pod, and more!

July 11, 2014

This stretch of beautiful summer weather has been extraordinary! We took off south through San Juan Channel and around Cattle Point, making our way up to Eagle Point. Blue skies all the way!

In the big eagle’s nest near Cape San Juan we caught a glimpse of a bald eagle fledgling. Shortly after we had our first Orca encounter, spotting the K13s and later J pod. J pod was active and playful, lots of surface activity that made for an amazing day of watching. Echo (J42) and one of the larger males, Mike (J26), both stood out today, and the girls, Melisa, Jerusha and Brittany, were eager to share their stories about both.

On our way back in, we saw a Steller Sea Lion on Whale Rocks and snapped some amazing pictures, like the one above. Check out all the highlights from today in our “July: Aboard the Odyssey” highlights album on Facebook.

The forecast says this weather is going to keep it up and keep getting better! We cannot wait to get back on the water tomorrow.

~The SJE Team, Captain Pete, Jerusha (Naturalist), Brittany (Naturalist), and Melisa (Naturalist)


Leave a Comment

Aboard the Odyssey, July 6th: Residents AND Humpbacks!!!

07.06.2014 101

July 6, 2014

Wow! Yet another fantastic day out on the water, after a brilliant and wildlife rich holiday weekend. The sunshine has stuck around after the 4th, and we took off from the harbor with some minor clouds overhead that were quick to part and cast some awesome sunshine our way.

We caught glimpses of the Mouflan Sheep on Spieden Island and then got our first sighting of the resident Orcas of J pod about an hour into the tour. Then, a wonderful surprise, a Humpback whale surfaced not 20′ from the Odyssey! A double whale species day. Absolutely amazing!

Check out our newest photos in the July 2014 Highlights album on our Facebook page. Photos of the amazing Humpack sighting are on their way!

~ The SJE Team, Captain Pete, Debbi (Naturalist), Jerusha (Naturalist), and Brittany (Naturalist) Humpback 7.6.14

Leave a Comment

Aboard the Odyssey: June 28th

06.28.2014 131June 28, 2014

We cannot help but feel so lucky to do what we do on days like today. Blue, sunshine filled skies, and a full SD card of photos of  J pod, harbor porpoise, and bald eagles. What an amazing wildlife month June has been this year. As we approach July and the promise of even better weather, the whole team is excited about what is in store for us this season.

Today, as we traveled south towards Cattle Pass and on up to Eagle Point, Princess Angeline (J17) and her offspring Moby (J44) gave us quite a surprise, surfacing close enough for all on board to witness a beautiful mom/offspring sighting. Mako (J39) also made the trip memorable by breaching near the Odyssey, making for exciting photo moments!

We saw a bald eagle perched on Goose Island in the middle of meal time, and harbor porpoise were spotted all around San Juan Channel. One of those perfect weather and wildlife days. We cannot wait to get back out there tomorrow.

~ Captain Pete, Jerusha (Naturalist), Debbi (Naturalist), and Brittany (Naturalist)


Leave a Comment

back to top


Reservations Line: 800-809-4253

We have not finalized our 2021 trip dates yet: please contact us with your desired trip dates so we can work to accommodate your request.