Winter 2019 Whale Watch week is announced! December 27th – December 31st, 2018. So, head off to the gorgeous Oregon coast. Although whales can be seen off the coast of Oregon year they, migrate along the coast twice a year. During the last week of the year and spring, approximately 20,000 gray whales migrate between Alaska and Baja Mexico just off the coast of Oregon. Resident gray whales will be seen feeding in the shallow waters during the summer months.
The Pacific gray whale is approximately 50 feet long and 80,000 pounds. These whales are like us, living as long as 80 years. Aside from humans, the orca or killer whale is their only predator. Commercial hunting greatly depleted the population in the mid-19th and early 20th century although illegal today. Additional threats include ships, habitat destruction, and noise pollution.
Our favorite place to view whales is Depoe Bay, Oregon. We are partial to this area as it was the first time we saw a whale. We managed to book an incredible day on a simple fishing boat viewing dozens of whale families. The southern migration falls on the Christmas and New Years, a brilliant way to spend the holiday. A spontaneous trip for New Years Even 2018 soon sparked our interest in these creatures. We have now viewed whale in Canada and California as well and will continue to book available opportunities.
A whale viewing center is available at the coast and will be staffed during the migration. However, we recommend finding a boat and heading into the water for an up-close experience. If you are unable to visit the Oregon Coast this winter, resident gray whales can also be seen feeding in the shallow waters during the summer months. This summer we came back to the coast to view the resident whales with Whale Research Eco Excursions. Resident gray whales will be seen feeding in the shallow waters during the summer months. As this company is owned by a marine biologist, the trip is educational and incredibly exciting as you board retired marine Zodiac boats!
The reason we have no pictures of the whales is for a very specific reason. When we view these magnificent creatures, we take in the moment. They are shy animals and surface briefly. We recommend putting the screen away and taking in the moment in person when a whale reveals itself. Take your partner, your friend, your parents (we brought our mother), or yourself and experience it!