The Humpback Whales are Back in Hawai'i!
Every November through April in Hawai'i, we have the unique opportunity to encounter the glory of the Humpacks when thousands of these gorgeous and gentle giants leave their feeding home of Alaska to breed, birth and nurse their calves in the warm tropical waters of the islands.
Although Humpbacks typically frolic in depths of 200 + ft., spotting one from the shore isn't as hard as it may seem. To spot from shore, I usually slowly gaze along the horizon for any obvious sight of large splashing or cloud shaped mist as pictured above. The mist is expelled from the blowhole when the whale surfaces for air and is one of the most beautiful sounds my ears have ever known..the best way to describe it would be like a soft swishing sounds that sounds a little like: fffffhhhhhwsssshh (i dunno must be a pieces thing!) And obvi you can only hear it when close enough! Great places on Oahu to watch whales include Makapuu Lighthouse, The Blow Hole, Koko Head Hike or any stop along the east side that gives you enough elevation to scan the horizon from above.
Another great whale sighting tip is to just look out for stopped boats. Chances are those boats are stopped for a reason! How else would we have gotten such a great picture of the mother and baby calve picture above who fearlessly glided quite close to me (a mother) and my calves! We were lucky to have our go pro on hand and our go pro PRO daddy who enthusiatically dipped the camera in the water at just the right time!
It's a humbling feeling to be so close to a specie so large and poweful and to witness its natural content in an element that remains so wild to me. We are so different from eachother yet share similarties..we share the same beautiful blue planet, the same air - although intake is totally different and the same true and pure heartwarming love for our little calves. That is my experience and connection to the Humpbacks and why they will always hold a special place in my heart. To them I am just another lady on a boat but to me they are a reminder of why I feel so fortunate to be able to experience the beauty that this Island lifestyle offers.
Whale, thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed my story and photos. For more information on viewing tips and encounters visit https://hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov/