The Oregon Coast Annual Whale Watching Week Begins

Whale Watching Week: From the 28th of December all the way through New Year’s Day, people will be able to participate in a whale-watching event that has been going on for decades along the Oregon Coast.

The Oregon Coast Annual Whale Watching Week Begins

During this time of year, some 19,000 grey whales are making their yearly migration from Alaskan feeding grounds to warm calving lagoons in Baja, Mexico, and they are swimming across Oregon. In addition, Oregon State Parks organizes coastal observation stations on an annual basis to assist visitors in seeing marine animals as they migrate along the coast.

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That is, up to the outbreak of the epidemic.

Now, for the first time since 2019, Whale Watch Week will be held at its traditional location along the Oregon Coast. Viewing stations spanning the distance from Astoria to Brookings will be staffed entirely by volunteers.

According to park ranger Peter McBride, grey whales travel between three and five miles offshore during the southern leg of their migration. Therefore, guests should carry binoculars with them and keep an eye out for their spouts, which may reach heights between 6 and 12 feet.

The Oregon Coast Annual Whale Watching Week Begins
The Oregon Coast Annual Whale Watching Week Begins

At this time of year, there is a possibility that you will see as many as 30 whales in one hour. Therefore, there are instances when there will be spouts that are dispersed all over the horizon line, as McBride said.

At other times, there may be lulls in the flow of whale traffic or weather that are stormy, both of which make it difficult to view.

McBride cautioned, “Whale viewing requires a significant amount of patience.”

During their amazing migration, some grey whales cover round-trip distances of more than 12,000 kilometers. In the year 2020, the parks department made an effort to virtually recreate the event’s enchantment by providing whale watchers at home with a webcast of the waves.

“Maybe we’ll get fortunate. A park ranger named Luke Parsons provided the narration for a live stream that lasted for four hours and was uploaded to the channel for Oregon State Parks on YouTube in May of 2020. He responded cheerfully to live chat queries posed by viewers while attentively searching the seas for a telltale blow.

This year, trained volunteers should staff more than a dozen viewing stations every day between the hours of 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

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And if you happen to miss the winter migration, you shouldn’t worry about it. The whales will make their way back up north in the spring, this time accompanied by their young and swimming much closer to the coast.

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