Friday, 21 April 2017

Beautiful day in North Iceland today. The sun was shining and the sea was perfectly flat. We left the harbour very confident of finding wildlife as a result and soon found harbour porpoises, although these animals surfaced quickly and disappeared. After waiting a little while for them to resurface with no luck, we continued on. More porpoises were spotted as we made our way north, but we chose not to stop for these and watched them as we traveled. We made it not far behind Hjalteyri and a large blow appeared. We presumed it was the blow of  a humpback whale as these were common visitors in the fjord last spring and summer, but as we drew closer we realised it was something much larger. It was a fin whale and it wasn't alone. Two fin whales swam gently through the area and everyone was ecstatic. The whales stayed in the same area surfacing several times before going down for a few minutes. We stayed motionless each time waiting to see them again and if we didn't see these enormous animals right away, we heard their powerful blows. We spent some time watching them without moving our boat, allowing them to move around us and dictate how close our encounters became. At one point they swam within twenty metres of our vessel which was met by gasps from everyone on board. We spent an hour sitting and watching the whales before heading home. Everyone was extremely happy and smiling as they departed the boat. An encounter with the second largest animal on the planet won't be easily forgotten.