Yesterday was sprinkled with magic and inspired a sense of awe and appreciation to live on the edge of Monterey Bay. In the morning I watched 2-3 Gray whales cruising slowly along the kelp beds. Having just crossed the daunting Monterey submarine canyon, Gray whales often glide slowly along the shallows of Santa Cruz. Having just passed through one of the most dangerous sections of the 7000 mile journey to their Alaskan feeding grounds, like many Santa Cruzans Grays are here to chill. While its tough to imagine a Gray whale calf being systematically hunted by a sophisticated team, Orca calves need their nourishment too.
Later in the day, we grabbed our surf matts and headed out into the kelp beds. I rarely get that “sharky” feeling but peering down through the kelp blades I wondered if “the land lord“, the “man in the gray suit” would pay us a visit. Our local population of great white sharks has been increasing over the last decade. Then suddenly two dorsal fins erupted through the glossy surface and a sense of anticipation was replaced with pure joy. A mother bottlenose dolphin and her calf glided by us. Pure magic.
As we ended our swim, I kept feeling that sense of being watched and indeed we were. Several harbor seals were shadowing us, gliding effortlessly through the kelp as we kicked along. What a honor to share the salty sea with the marine mammals of Monterey Bay.