Well our offshore weather forecast didn't really pan out yesterday but we came close on a few priority species today. We worked up from Catalina by Santa Barbara Island yesterday and had very good weather in the morning and searched for about 8 hours for beaked whales in workable weather, but as we got into the Santa Cruz Basin the wind picked up on top of the swell and other than a few fin whale sightings it was a wash of a day.
This morning we woke up in the shaddow of a massive cliff under misty fog on the south side of Santa Cruz Island and it was calm. This area to the south of the northern Channel Islands is relatively sheltered from the prevailaing winds from the northwest and also offers deep water fairly close to shore. Within an hour we had a group of 5 fin whales with an offshore blue mixed in, some foraging Risso's dolphins and two likely beaked whale sightings. For a time we had hopes of tagging multiple individuals and a mixed-species CEE in deep water, but ultimately we got in close on the fins a few times but no cigar with them or the blue, the Risso's had neonates in the group meaning we had to pass them up, we never saw the Risso's again. Heading back to Santa Barbara at the end of Leg I and I will put up a little summary of our accomplishments when we are back in.