DAILY DIARY

25.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

12:45 - ON 

24.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

12:45 - ON 

Beautiful sunny weather for whale watching 

Today there was a very cold moderate breeze from the northwest, we set course west towards the area of sandbanks in the bay were we know sand eels are abundant. Today there were plenty of birds out there, and also large numbers of puffins in the feeding areaOur guests managed to get nice pictures of puffins emerging from their dives and also when some individuals that were quite close to the boat. Once on the feeding grounds, we as it is becoming the usual pattern, we found harbor porpoises that were showing up here and there in small groups. There were groups of northern gannets taking frenzy dives here and there probably associated with the porpoises, Not long after we sighted a minke whale and it became clear it was in the company of other minke whales, at least three or four. 

 

Today it was extremely difficult to get good pictures of those minke whales as they were appearing suddenly, briefly and sporadically. I just managed to get one sequence on multiple shots when one suddenly appeared beside our boat,  

In the afternoon there were probably stronger tidal currents out there, and all the bird life was gone, We proceeded towards the same area where we had encountered the minke whales in the morning tour. However, we got there and except for puffins, we saw no sign of the minke whales nor the porpoises, just like the day earlier. Today, we found large numbers of white-beaked dolphins spread over large areas there must have been hundreds of them in a few square kilometers. It seemed that the dolphins had arrived in large numbers into the area chasing away the porpoises we had encountered earlier in the morning tour.

 

We took pictures of all sorts of single individuals, groups, far away and just next to us. 

 

For the next days, it is predicted to warm up so it is possible that conditions will improve in the bay and also it will make whale watching a little easier that it was today.

 

JHF

23.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

Su nis shinig but it is cold. We sail out today

12:45 - ON 

Beautiful day, su n is shining and little wind and we are sailing out!

Today Sunday the 23rd sea conditions were fine, there was a coldish mild breeze from the northwest, but it was sunny and pleasant, especially on the way back. We set course west on low tide. Today there were few birds out there, but there had been larger numbers of puffins in the seen in the bay, especially in the feeding area. Our guests managed to get nice pictures of puffins emerging from their dives and also when some individuals that were quite close to the boat. Once on the feeding grounds, we began to notice the presence of harbor porpoises that were showing up here and there briefly. Not long after we sighted a minke whale. 

 

  

We saw that individual once more and not long after it appeared as if it had been joined by other whales we think that at some point there were at least three individuals near us.

 

In the afternoon the phase of the tide was on flow or incoming and there were probably stronger tidal currents out there. We proceeded towards the same area where we had encountered the minke whales in the morning tour. However, we got there and except for puffins, we saw no sign of the minke whales nor the porpoises. we persevered in our search and eventually, we found a nice group of white-beaked dolphins that spent a while with us. 

 

  

In summary, it was a rather cold day but it was pleasant on the sun and sailing with the wind on our way back. We had a reasonable sighting success and the arrival of large numbers of puffins spiced the day.

 

-JHF   

22.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

Cloudy but pleasant weather. We are sailing out today.

12:45 - ON

It is still nice wather, warmer than this morning so we will sail out again this after noon

On this day we left harbor in a cloudy but pleasant day, conditions at sea seemed fine from the shelter of the harbor, but it proved a little rougher than we had anticipated. We left the harbor and set course west towards the feeding grounds in the bay. On our way out we had noticed the increasing numbers of puffins just outside the harbor area. Upon reaching the feeding grounds we stumbled upon a nice group of 5 or 6 white-beaked dolphins that were spotted first by our captain as they were splashing and breaching leisurely.


 

That was all for that morning tour we searched the vicinity for the presence of some minke whales with no success. Wenger had heard over the radio that some had been seen briefly further out in the bay, we didn't find that surprising because we were right at the lowest phase of the tidal cycle. In the second tour of the day, we also found dolphins a little further out in the bay, but this group was larger but less exciting to watch. 


After having spent a while with these dolphins we moved away from them to let them rest and luckily, again our captain, spotted a large minke whale a few hundred meters right in front of us. 


This was great as we finished the day in style and is great news for the coming days, the whales are beginning to enter the Faxa bay after two long days of stormy weather and may begin to show up in larger numbers.

 

-JHF 

21.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

12:45 - ON

 

Today we had a little cold day sailing out into the bay, we also had some waves that did not amount to swell. Afer a couple of days of rough weather, when no boats did go out at all. We did not know what to expect so we decided to set course west towards the feeding grounds. A humpback whale had been around in the bay the days before the storm.

 

                          

We were hoping that this individual may have just returned to the bay after the stormy weather had calmed, but no one of the whale watching boats spotted it today. There were only small groups of white-beaked dolphins to be found out there on the morning tour. 


Later on, we noticed the presence of diving birds (guillemots and puffins) in the area as well as more fish under the boat. All these observations made us suspect that minke whales may have been attracted to the area, indeed while on our way back a minke whale showed up right in front of us. Although some passengers saw it well we did not manage to get a picture this time as it all happened too fast. We called all passengers back on deck and searched for that individual for a while but it just didn't show up again, it probably swam away too fast in some direction and we just lost it. 

 

In summary, the day was reasonably successful considering the turbulent conditions out there after the stormy days. The presence of auks (guillemots and puffins) is very encouraging they arrive into the bay because they expect sand eels to begin to come off the sandy bottom after their long hibernation.

 

-JHF  

20.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - OFF

Too strong wind expected in the morning to sail :(

To reschedule or get a refund  please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

12:45 - OFF

Nothing change, it is still too windy to sail today :(

To reschedule or get a refund  please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

 

19.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

We might feel some movement on the boat on the morning tour but we provide complimentary seasickness pils, just ask at our office or crew on the boat

12:45 - OFF

It will be to rough on the ocean to sail in the afternoon.

To reschedule or get a refund  please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

18.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

Nice day and we are sailing out.
There will be some movement on the boat after yesterdays storm and if you are sensitive to motionsickness we provide preventable tablets in the office or on the boat, free of charge.

12:45 - 

 

To schedule  please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

Winds and winds.

 

Not so much of them today.

A little bit, but not too much.

We headed out against the wind on our whale watching trip today.

Coming in from the west we drove into it as far as we could for about an hour and a half.

Nothing to see in that direction...

 

So we went back, saw a glimpse of a couple of porpoises.

And we reached the outer harbor uneventfully.

And then we found a humpback.

 

A megaptera novangelis was spouting right in front of the boat !

Right outside the harbor as well.

We ran out of time pretty quick, but we managed to get some good looks at it.

 

On our second trip of the day we headed a bit to the north, where the little humpback had headed.

And he was found right away.

We stayed with him for a good long time before heading in.

He wasn't in any sort of hurry and he often stayed just under the water, calm as a cucumber (the most relaxed of vegetables*).

 

So two humpback tours.

A fine day indeed.

 

Not really sure how the weather for the next couple of days is going to turn out.

Could go either way.

But we will wait, and see what will be.

 

-JIB

17.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - OFF

12:45 - OFF

Due to rough weather conditions we are forced to cancel Whale Watching tours

To reschedule or get a refund please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

16.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

12:45 - ON

Calm wind and quite cold, but we provide warm overalls for our passengers

Whale watching on Easter's day

 

Today Easter's Sunday the 16th we had a full boat and sea conditions were just excellent, there was a mild breeze from the northwest, but it was sunny and pleasant, especially on the way back. We set course west as usual after having obtained information on the whale watching activities in the morning. There had been harbor porpoises and minke whales just about 30-40 minutes sail west from Reykjavik harbor. Today there were few birds out there, but there had been reports of puffins in the area. As soon as we reached the feeding area porpoises were seen coming to the surface repeatedly in groups of up to six individuals. We managed to get nice pictures from the distance and also when some individuals came quite close to the boat.

 


 

After a short while, it became evident that the porpoises were not alone when a large minke whale was spotted surfacing not far from us. The animal spent some time taking long dives in the vicinity likely feeding on shoals of fish near the bottom.

 


After repeatedly seeing more groups of porpoises coming to the surface nearby at one point we saw one large minke whale that was followed by a second one some 70-100 meters apart and it became evident that there were a few individuals in the area sharing fish with the harbor porpoises.

 

  

In all the whale watching tour was excellent, everybody on board had a magnificent time with great viewing of the cetaceans that had entered the Faxa bay on that pleasant Easter day's afternoon.

 

-JHF

 

15.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

We might feel some movement on the boat but we provide complimentary seasick pils, just ask in our office or crew on the boat

12:45 - ON

We might feel some movement on the boat but we provide complimentary seasick pils, just ask in our office or crew on the boat

Northern Lights:

22:00 - ON 

Our last tour in this season.....  with clear sky :)

 

 

8:45 / 12:45

As it has been the case these days we had a cool northerly wind blowing most of the day. Also, like on previous days, we left toward the feeding area along the north coast to use some shelter from the wind. After a short while, 40 minutes or so, minke whales were sighted in an area where countless seabirds could be seen.  We got close to it and managed to get a decent view, from a distance though.

 We also noted the presence of many fish in the area and harbor porpoises, as it has been the pattern these days. In the afternoon we had a similar sequence and on reaching the feeding area, again minke whales were found. However, the shot of the day was taken earlier in the latter tour when a small group of harbor porpoises, surprissed us by swimming along with the boat for a few minutes. 

 

JHF

14.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - OFF

12:45 - OFF

Due to strong wind we are forced to cancel our morning tour.

To reschedule or get a refund please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

Northern Lights:

22:00 - ON

Clear sky and good activity, fingers crossed for a good show :)

 

13.3.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

Nice but cold.

 

12:45 - ON

Northern Lights:

22:00 - OFF

Due to clouds, they are in our way so we will not be able to see throug them.

 

A good whale watching day

 

Today we had a very good whale watching day, just like yesterday it was a little chili as a northeasterly moderate breeze was blowing all day. The day began like yesterday's after about 35-40 minutes we sighted harbor porpoises, but today we noticed more guillemots (auks or diving birds). There was plenty fish in the area near the bottom. It looked like it could have been schools of capelin which at one point were very large probably hundreds of meters long and at least 10 m deep. After a short while, we saw that these porpoises were in the company of minke whales in the area. The minke whales did not show themselves much, but we got lucky and one surfaced close to our boat so we got a nice view.

 


 In all the morning tour was quite successful and we returned to harbor after we encountered another minke whale briefly on our way back. In the afternoon we left under similar conditions and we found white-beaked dolphins near the same area where they were found the previous day. However, after spending a short while with these dolphins we left the area as they were a little far and they weren't showing themselves much, but still, we managed to get some decent pictures of them. Then we decided to head towards a feeding ground area to the west of the bay to search for minke whales. Not long after we found minke whales in the area, again after noticing that there were harbor porpoises around.

 


Listening to the conversations from the skippers over the radio on other boats we figured that there were at least three minke whales in the area. That in addition to the fact that we had seen large schools of capelin, increasing numbers of guillemots and harbor porpoises all point to very good conditions in the bay for the coming days.

 

​​   
-JHF

 

12.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

After windy days the wind has started to slow down and the sun has started to shine.

Even though it is calm here there might be some movements on the boat. If you are sensitive to motion sickness we do have preventable tablets at our office and boat free of charge.

12:45 - ON

Northern Lights:

22:00 - OFF

Due to cloudy skies we are not sailing out tonight.

Forcast is looking good for tomorrow and Friday even better, so we hope we will sail out then.

 

Today we left harbor on a clear day, a little chili though as a northeasterly moderate breeze was blowing all day. After about 35-40 minutes all the boats began sighting harbor porpoises.There wasn't much fish in the area except near the bottom, it could have been juvenile cod or saith that are very abundant in the bay. After a short while, we also spotted harbor porpoises and actually got a close view when a pair of them, rather surprisingly, approached our boat. 

 


We had just speculated on the possibility of these porpoises being in the company of minke whales when all the sudden one of our passengers spotted one. This made a good end of the tour, especially because we got a good view of that whale that spouted close to us and surfaced repeatedly.

 


 

That wast all in the morning in the afternoon we left under similar conditions and the pattern was repeated only that we found white-beaked dolphins instead.


 

They stayed with us for a while and approached the boat swimming under the hull very close before getting away as fast as they came.

      

 

-JHF

11.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

12:45 - ON

Northern Lights:

22:00 - ON

Finally, Clear sky expected tonight :)

8:45 / 12:45

A windy day.

Lots of fog and perception.

Not a lot of visibility.

 

We sailed out on our whale watching tour  nevertheless.

A load of harbor porpoises was seen throughout the tour.

And about an hour into the tour a minke whale was seen.

She came up once but then....

Who knows, where do minkes go ?

 

Even windier on the afternoon tour.

Cleared up a bit though.

Sun shining. The view came back.

We didn't go out very far, because there was quite some movement out there and we found quite a lot of white-beaked dolphins that we could stay with for with some time.

 

The weather looks decent for the coming days.

 

10.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

Beautiful, sunny day for Whale Watching.

12:45 - ON

Northern Lights:

22:00 - ....

8:45 / 12:45

 

Well....

 

Two windy whale watching tours today.

The sun shone in the morning and got covered by clouds in the afternoon.

Neither tour could really be counted as complete, due to a noticeable lack of whales.

 

We did see a single minke whale once, at the very end of the first tour, where it surfaced about 25 meters from the side of the boat.

Which is great in itself.

But that was the only time we saw her.

So that didn't really live up to my standards of a successful whale watching tour.

 

So free returns for two years for everybody today.

 

-JIB

9.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

The sun is shining (an will continue hopefully) and a fresh breeze.

12:45 - ON

Going out again, hoping for whales.

Northern Lights:

22:00 - ON

The clouds are going away so ww can enjoy the auroras tonight!

Not too bad out there today, even though I say so myself.

 

On our first whale watching tour today the wind blew quite freshly on us from the northeast.

The sun shone on us a bit which was quite welcome.

The course was set to the west.

We had to look for a good long while, but in the end a minke whale was located in the south of the bay.

Got a decent look at it from a little bit away, right before it dove.

Wait for a little while......

And it comes and surfaces right next to us !!

 

So that was a good tour.

 

In the afternoon tour we had quite a bit of luck as well.

The wind and waves calmed down quite a bit.

It took us some time but this time around we located numerous white-beaked dolphins  a bit to the north and quite far out.

They were jumping and splashing, off in the distance and all around.

Came quite close, playing around the bow and having lots of dolphin fun :)

There was even a minke whale swimming about on the outskirts of the dolphin pod.

I'm not sure anyone saw it except myself, but it was there, elusive and sneaky as they all are.

 

One shouldn't generalize, but minkes are the sneakiest of all cetaceans*, with the possible exception of the harbor porpoise.

 

The weather looks like it's gonna try to stir up some trouble. 

As weather is wont to do.

Tomorrow morning looks nice, tomorrow afternoon does not.

Strong winds, lots of rain, normal spring weather really.

Tuesday could go either way.

 

But.

As always.

We will see what will be :)

 

-JIB 

8.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

It is raining but we won´t let that stop us. We will just keep warm and hope for whales.

12:45 - OFF

Later today is going to be to windy to set off for whale.

Northern Lights:

22:00 - OFF

It is to cloudy tonight.

The calm before the storm....

 

Or the relative calm before the storm more like ;)

 

So another whale watching trip and and another cloudy day.

Started out by heading west, some movement as we head out.

A single white-beaked dolphin shows up and disappears in the blink of an eye.

  

But after about an hour a minke whale is found.

And another one. Somewhere.

It did sneak away though.

So we are left with one minke whale, a bit elusive one at that.

 

We catch a few decent glimpses of her before we head back.

Fully mature. A fine specimen.

But on the way back we stumble upon a minke whale calf, much smaller than the other.

 

So those two were probably the same minke whales as we saw yesterday, and hopefully they stay with us for the coming days.

 

Our afternoon tour has been cancelled due too strong winds coming in from the northeast.

It should have died down before the morning though.

 

But we will see what will be :)

 

-JIB

7.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

It is raining but we woint let that stop us. Just dress well and keep warm.

12:45 - ON

Despite the lack of sunshine we are happy and looking for whales.

Northern Lights:

22:00 - OFF

To many clouds in the sky and it is supposed to rain. That is not a good combo for northern lights.

 

Spring winds blowing.

 

The sun shone as we headed out this morning.

I assume.

Not on us.

I didn't see it until this afternoon.

 

Warm winds were blowing from the south west as we headed out on our whale watching trip today, and as implied above it was rather cloudy.

 

Quite a bit of movement as well, nothing awful though.

The captain saw a harbor porpoise that came real close, but like with many other porpoise sightings he was the only one that saw it :)

 

But a pair of minke whales was found, rather late into the trip.

It was a mother and a calf, coming up once and then diving for a minute or two, and then repeating that pattern for quite some time.

Very likely feeding, as they were moving slowly and there seemed to be some fish present.

Got a few looks at them and then we had to head home.

 

The wind picked up on our second trip but the sun came out, a fair deal.

But then there were no minkes and not a lot of birds.

We did see some porpoises though.

Which is better* than nothing :)

But just seeing porpoises doesn't really cut it for me.

So retries valid for two years for everybody.

 

The weather looks similar for the coming days, a bit windy tomorrow, but calmer in the coming week.

More large whales are seen now than in the past months, which is excellent.

So good times ahead.

 

-JIB

 

*By a rather small amount.

 

6.4.2017 - WHALE WATCHING AND NORTHERN LIGHTS TOURS

N64°12’03.59”
W021°59’3077”

Whale Watching:

8:45 - ON

We might feel some movement on the boat but we provide complimentary seasick pils, just ask at our office or crew on the boat

To schedule please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

12:45 - ON

To schedule please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

Northern Lights:

22:00 - OFF

Still to cloudy tonight :(

To reschedule or get a refund please contact us at info@ReykjavikSailors.is

 

 

8:45 / 12:45

 

Today the weather had come dawn substantially compared with the last two or three days, we had some mild showers and a not too cold moderate breeze from the SW. We went out into the feeding grounds out to the west of Reykjavík and on our way we noticed plenty of fish near the bottom. The waters were still a little cold, after the stormy last two days so not many birds were seen. Sailing out for an hour eventually a group of white-beaked dolphins were found and soon all the whale watching boats gathered to get a close view..

 

On the second tour the conditions were similar except that we left on the ebbing tide and got to the feeding grounds at low tide. Again, we found a group of dolphins, one of them became very curious and approached the boat several rimes even bow riding once.

 

 

After the playful individual had left us we decided to go in search for a minke Whale that had reportedly been spotted one mile to the north of us. We searched over the area for some time but with no luck. In any case conditions in the bay are coming back to calmer waters and so much fish present these days shuld attract hungry whales and dolphins this weekend.

 

JHF