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Sunday, January 25, 2009

Whidbey Island Trip

Yesterday I gave a successful talk at the Way of the Whales Workshop, which was hosted by Orca Network and was down on Whidbey Island. They had about 120 people show up, which is great!

To get to Whidbey Island, we take a ferry from San Juan Island to Anacortes, and then you drive across the Deception Pass Bridge to get to Whidbey. I've never stopped to take a picture of the dramatic bridge before, but I had a bit of extra time yesterday after making a quick doughnut stop for breakfast to stop at one of the scenic pull-outs. Unfortunately the earling morning light was working against me, but it still gives you the idea:


During the lunch break, I had time to walk down to the wharf at Coupeville where they have a couple of marine mammal skeletons on display. Below is a picture of a Dall's porpoise skeleton named Rudy. Rudy washed up on the shores of Clinton, Washington in 2004. They think its likely he died of old age, at about 20 years old for a porpoise. He didn't have any teeth left (so he may have died of starvation) and showed some erosion on his bones, another condition that may have contributed to his mortality. I think the number and proximity of all the vertebrae are pretty amazing:

2 comments:

Michele said...

I have heard Whidbey Island is beautiful. I was suppose travel through last summer when I was on vacation, but canceled to stay the whole time on San Juan.

Thanks for showing the Dalls Porpoise skeleton. It's interesting as I didn't realize their body were shaped that way. Not sure why, but I have only seen them a couple of times in the last ten years.

Have a great week.

Monika said...

Michele, if you're driving up from down south a nice route to take instead of going straight up I5 through Washington is to cut off at Olympia and head up the Olympic Peninsula and Highway 101. There is a ferry from Port Townsend to Keystone on Whidbey Island (although with the Washington State Ferry craziness it sometimes doesn't offer car service so check ahead). Then you can drive up Whidbey Island, cross the Deception Pass Bridge to Anacortes, and take a ferry to the San Juans. It's BEAUTIFUL scenery the whole drive, much better than the I5 corridor, and that way you can still maximize your San Juan Island time.