Thanks to a tip from my friend Katie, I went out to the westside of San Juan Island late this afternoon where I saw J-Pod. It was a much needed "whale fix", and the weather even cooperated for a brief window of rainless viewing. When I first got out there the whales were many miles offshore, milling, and taking long dives. My patience paid off, however, as it often does with the orcas, when a group of about 8 animals came by about 50 yards offshore. Magical!
I think this is youngster J42 Echo doing the cartwheel:
Included in the group was J2 Granny, who is estimated to be 100 years old this year. She's still going strong:
It was great to see my whale friends! This was a great start to what will hopefully be a whale-filled summer season.