The Grey Whales Have Returned to Tofino
It’s official - the first grey whales of the season were spotted off the coast of Tofino last week and word was spread quickly around town via Facebook and Twitter (isn’t technology wonderful sometimes!?).
For us here on the west coast the return of the whales also signifies the returning of spring, and we couldn’t be happier to know that daylight saving is just around the corner and the days are getting longer and brighter. Another sign of spring for us at Crystal Cove is all of our crocus’ that are popping up and blooming around the property.
The return of the whales also marks the return of the west coast’s very own Pacific Rim Whale Festival, which this year is scheduled from March 16-24, 2013. The Whale Festival is “nine days and nights of events designed to inspire, educate and entertain, by celebrating our coastal traditions, unique environment and the spring return of the grey whale.” The Pacific Rim Whale Festival is full of over 90 events for young and not-so-young and is a great way to immerse oneself in some west coast culture.
Almost all of the grey whales that we spot along our coast have started their migratory journey in breeding lagoons off Baja, Mexico (which funnily enough is where a lot of our local surfers also spend their winters) and are making their way towards the Bering Sea in search of food from the nutrient-rich cold waters of the north. Averaging a cruising speed of 2-5 knots and traveling a distance of 160km a day, the migrating whales will travel 20,000 kilometers in what is the longest marine mammal migration and possibly also the largest migration of any mammal on planet. That is quite a journey and it is no wonder we have a festival to celebrate!
For more information and interesting facts on these wonderful mammals and the festival in celebration of them please feel free to check out www.pacificrimwhalefestival.com.