Monday, May 7, 2007
Orcas off of Trial Island
This morning I went down to Trial Island to paddle out on the ebb and take some pictures of the Light House. I should have guessed it would be a special day when a River Otter spy hopped about five meters off my bow. This bold little guy showed no fear what so ever. He even swam a few strokes towards me, enough to make me think he might become a problem. Then down he went.
There's a huge air and water military exercise gearing up off the west coast of Vancouver Island this week. Today was the first day and there was lots of military traffic on the water. Canadian Frigates were out, no doubt hunting American subs. Up at the Airport an American F15 a couple of Hawkeye's, a US airforce CB-9 (it's a DC-9) and a CF Airbus came in over the weekend. With all this activity I couldn't help but wonder if the micro waves and the radar rays would be strong enough to cook a hot dog on my deck. Alas I never seem to have a dog when I need one.
After snapping a few photos of the Lighthouse I headed back to Oak Bay to do my annual golf ball rolls. Just along the shore there is a golf course. From the elevated tees the duffers routinely slice golf balls into the sea. I like to roll my boat reach down, grab a ball, and roll back up. Holding the golf ball in your hand ensures you use a light touch on the paddle - slowing the sweep down. It's good practice. Sometimes I throw the balls back on the fairway. Sometimes not. On the way back I was surfing the bow wave of an outbound tanker when I heard the tell tale whoosh of an Orca. A pod was transiting through Enterprise Channel between Trial Island and Ross Bay. I snapped a few shots. The photos have been enlarged so the detail is not that great. It's great to live in a place where you can drive down to the shore, take a stroll or go for a paddle and be welcomed by these guys.