I have and always will be a sceptic when it comes to wildlife tours, Jane is not so off we went to the whale centre . After going through the details and pricing we decided to have look around then went back to the whale centre and booked a bear watch in the morning with a whale watching in the afternoon. Arrived the following morning and although it was really clear day we dressed warmly, everyone was supplied with a suit which fitted over your clothes which afforded buoyancy and warmth . The boat is open topped which gives you the feeling of actually being part of the surroundings . Off we go and after the initial introductions we set off at speed to find some bears, on the way we see a Bald Eagle perched on a rock then hit a large bank of mist . You cannot see more than 20ft in front but the boat hasn't slowed down ,quite exhilarating, good job John knows what he's doing . Out of the mist and everyone starts looking for the bears , the bears come down to the shore moving rocks to get the crabs , how I know this becauseJohn is continually explaining what is going on around us and is more than happy when answering questions. First thing we spot are some seals sitting on a rock then as we slowly cruise into a small bay we get our first sight of a Black Bear, John brings the boat slowly towards the shore ,turns off the engine and coasts to within ten feet of the bear, incredible. All you can hear is the clicking of cameras,but the bear just glances up then carries on looking for food. All in all there are three bears and we spend about an hour taking photos and listening to John explain what when and why the bears are doing what there doing . Time to move on we head out again at speed to another bay, half way there a sea lion comes right out of the water with a fish in its mouth, shakes its head and tears it in two then repeats it three times ,more pickies. We now headed back big smiles on our faces at this point we took time to take in the fantastic scenery from a different view point being on the water. Bear watch over just enough time in Tofino to grab lunch the back to the centre to grab our suits and back on the water. Old hands at this now we go for the front seats, if you can try to get them great, it doesn't affect the viewing but what a ride when going out to sea . first stop colony of sea lions they are very funny and give great entertainment to all,20 minutes later its full speed out too sea,25 minutes later we are amongst a pod of Rissos dolphins, cute but made even cuter by the pups or calves they have with them. John was surprised that they stuck around as normally the shoot off .....but by this time I had come to the conclusion that the wildlife on this trip had come from everywhere just to see us. We were now past the allotted time for our tour so with reluctance we headed back (later found out John was supposed to meet his wife, he was late ,sorta get the feeling this might of happened once or twice before).It was I know a little selfish after all we had seen that day but not seeing a whale was a little disappointing .......still we have the rollercoaster ride back on the boat. Suddenly the boat slows then stops ,John explains one of the other boats has seen a humpback in the area so we will give it five minutes just in case, then 300 metres ahead two spurts of water its them, unbelievable, as we drifted , about 200 metres ahead the humpback breached it breached!! It did this three times, John explained it was with a calf and was letting us know they were there.
All in all the Whale Centre blew away my scepticism, the cost is what it is..... the experience is unmissable . John and his team are very professional ........THANKYOU
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