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Turks & Caicos Aggressor II
Feb. 28 – Mar. 7
Water Temperature: 78° - 80°F
Visibility: 80 feet
Captain AMANDA SMITH
2nd Captain LOWEL O’ROURKE
Engineer ROB SMITH
Guide KELLY CURRINGTON
Chef SHEA MARKWELL
GUESTS: Gernot & Ilona, Ines & Frank, Alfred & Heidi, Sigi, Marc, Heinz & Tatja, Silvius & Ulrike, Steffedn & Dajana, Ursula, Friederika, Arthur, Reinhold
The sun is shining over the marina and the waves are breaking just past the barrier wall. We can hear the chatter as the guests come down the dock and close in on the adventure that awaits them. They have travelled here from Austria, Switzerland, and Germany for a chance to be in the water with the magnificent Atlantic Humpback Whales. As they boarded the vessel you could feel the excitement in the air about what they would see, memories that would be made, and new friendships that would be formed; creating an ora of happiness.
Once all official briefings and “need to know” are done the guests settled into their cabins for a good night’s rest as Captain Amanda and crew ready the yacht for the nine to ten hour night crossing out to the Silver Bank.
As we enter the Bank the seas immediately start to calm down and the first sighting of that beautiful mist shooting up high is spotted. In the distance the sun glistens off the velvet black skin of a whale breaking the surface as the “hump” becomes visible and then disappears again under the waves.
We are greeted by a beauty laying on her back exposing the white underside and slapping her pectoral fins one after another as if to say, “Welcome to my home”. After this stunning display of grace and elegance, her pursuer showed his power and persistence by tail slapping repeatedly; and they moved off together.
As the guests enjoy a short break and some fruit on the tender; they are suddenly aware of a brilliant aquamarine color moving closer to them. As they peer down; three whales swim directly under them, slowly and purposefully checking out the small object resting above them. Later they are gifted with a baby launching itself out of the water with carefree joy; creating a splash worthy of a 10! This acrobatic maneuver was continued numerous times as the mother swam slowly beneath keeping a watchful eye on her toddler. The guests cheered each time the shiny gray and white mass broke the surface and became airborne.
As if pec slapping, tail slapping, and breaching weren’t enough; guests were treated to the beginning of what we call a Valentine. A female approached the tender just below the surface and rolled over on her back; pectoral fins straight out beside her and arched her back. As guests entered the sea and glanced down, she was completely vertical now with pectorals reaching out as if waiting for an embrace. She spy hopped and held her position for about 10 minutes allowing guests to get a very close look at her beautiful form and elegance. Two perspective escorts loomed just in the distance and then briskly moved her away leaving a permanent impression in the hearts of those that witnessed this tender display of trust.
A mother and calf seemed to be content hanging out on the surface so we approached and watched. When the time was right and the mother was resting below the guests slipped into the water and approached. To their delight the calf came up and did fly-bys, breathed, and then returned to the safety of moms shadow; but not for long. The calf seemed to be curious about the strange shapes floating on the surface above him. He interacted with guests for more than two hours making sure every new face was checked out thoroughly and was given the one-on-one in-the-eye look that every guests hopes they will experience. That one can be checked off “the list”.
As a beautiful farewell on our last day of encounters; a stunning strong mother and rambunctious calf kept us entertained for about two miles. The calf launched itself out of the water so many times we lost count. Suddenly the mother brought her huge gleaming tail straight out of the water and slammed it down sideways; maybe telling her young one to settle down so she can rest! It was a lovely way to end the charter and say farewell to the majestic creatures we were lucky enough to have spent time with this week.
From the Ocean to you…