Alaska Whale Watching Cruises and Wildlife Tours
Alaska Whale Watching has always been one of the highlights of our cruises in Alaska. On our Alaska Whale Watching trips we will spend the majority of our cruising time in areas where the whales congregate. These protected waters of Alaska's inside passage offer one of the best whale watching venues in the world today. With our years of expertise you will not be disappointed as we watch these beautiful animals. Because we observe them without interference they have formed a bond with us in Alaska that can only be observed. I have a great love for these animals and as many of our former clients would attest it seems to be reciprocal. It has been very common for whales to swim under the boat and to lay alongside us in a friendly encounter. On our Juneau to Juneau, Ketchikan to Juneau and Sitka to Juneau cruises we'll cruise through their feeding grounds and encounters are quite frequent if not daily.
Southeast Alaska is the summer feeding grounds to the largest concentration of Humpback Whales in the North Pacific. Frederick Sound, Stephens Passage and Chatham Strait provide a rich supply of krill and small bait fish that the Humpback whales rely on for their primary food source. This relatively small protected region supports almost 400 of these magnificent and graceful creatures during the summer feeding season from May to early October. It's very common during the summer to see more than a hundred individuals on any given day.
As we watch them breach, frolic or cooperatively feeding you can't help but be awestruck by their agility. In the over 30 years that we've watched these whales in Alaska we never tire as every day is always a new experience. We carry the latest in Hydra phonic equipment so we can also listen to their eerie but beautiful sounds as well.
We also have frequent encounters with Orca ( Killer ) whales as they transit the area in search of prey the salmon or in some cases marine mammals. Much depends on the pods themselves "transients versus residents". The "resident" pods follow the migration of the salmon , while the "transient" pods move through the area quickly usually in search of seals, sea lions or other marine mammals. We've even witnessed an attack on a Humpback Whale, I might add that was unsuccessful.
At times both the Humpbacks and Orcas actually seem to frolic together. Particularly during group cooperative feeding sessions where we've witnessed a number of times pods of Orcas in the same area perhaps picking up the leftovers or plain just having fun.
While the protected waters surrounding Admiralty Island provides a safe haven for these magnificent creatures, the waters also support a vast Eco-system that renders shelter for the Stellar Sea Lion , Minke Whale, Dall's Porpoise and the Harbor Seal as well as a vast variety of shore birds and other marine mammals.
Admiralty Island itself boasts the densest population of Brown Bears anywhere on earth. The rivers of Admiralty provide some of the richest spawning grounds for Chum, Pink ,King ( Chinook) and Coho (Silver) Salmon. Which the bears rely on for their chief food source.
Admiralty Island is also one of the largest summer nesting grounds for the Bald Eagle on earth. I've enclosed a few pictures of our friends the Humpback and Orca whales for your enjoyment.
If you click on the pictures below you should be able to enlarge and view them. I will periodically change the photos so don't forget to come back. The photos were taken on one of our typical Alaska Whale Watching Cruises.
Cooperative feeding Humpback Whales in Southeast Alaska
Whales Tails ( Flukes )
Orca ( Killer ) whales
Breaching Humpback Whale
Humpbacks Cooperatively Feeding
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