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Book Whale Watching Tour

Next Level Sailing Whale Watching Report


Date

Cruise

Report

8/25/22 4 Minke Whales, Offshore Bottlenose, Elephant Seal,  Sea Lions The past few days have been been quiet on the mammal side, but we have seen hundreds and hundreds of tuna! At one point, we even counted 32 fishing boats in just 1 square mile. Everywhere we looked, there were tuna. Today, we were thrilled to finally find some mammals. We saw a total of 4 minke whales and a group of 20 offshore bottlenose dolphins. Shockingly,  we also saw an elephant seal today. It was quite a surprise as we never see them down here. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
8/17/22 1 Blue Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We haven’t spotted blue whales for a few days. Captain Troy and Diana heard reports of a blue whale up to the north and decided to go for it. Luckily this whale was traveling south. We were able to follow this whale south, guests were able to get incredible views. We are eager to find more migrating blue whales in the next few weeks!
8/16/22 Common Dolphins, Tuna, Bait Balls, Sea Lions There is a lot of tuna out in the water! We headed out west and found at least 7 different bait balls with tuna jumping out of the water. From afar, they almost looked like splashes from dolphins. If I was a humpback whale, I would be here! Despite all our efforts, we didn’t see any whales. Hopefully they will come back tomorrow!
8/12/22 Common Dolphins, Coast Guard Special Forces, Sea Lions The weather has been spectacular. It is very warm on land, rising up to 80 degrees with 70% humidity. The humidity is very unusual for San Diego, but we are loving these sunny days on the ocean.  While we didn’t see whales today, we did find common dolphins and sea lions. We also saw an impressive view of Coast Guard Special Forces. They zoomed past the guests in their speedy boat, it was super cool!
8/11/22 Sea Lions & Navy Dolphins Although it is rare, sometimes we don’t see whales or wild dolphins during our trips in the summer. Unfortunately, this happened today. It was a gorgeous day out on the water with beautiful sunny skies and blue water. That said, we couldn’t see a dolphin or whale for miles. Hopefully the wildlife will return to these waters tomorrow. Everyone aboard today’s trip will get to come back for free anytime!
8/10/22 Cow & Calf Blue Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Seeing a blue whale cow and calf late in the summer is such a contrast to early spring. The calf has grown considerably in size and weight. It still stays right with its mom for dives, but we were amazed to this beautiful sight. We also passed through three huge separate pods of common dolphins. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
8/9/22 3 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions There must be a lot of food in the water. For five days straight, we have been getting fantastic views of these beautiful animals. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
8/8/22 7 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Another fantastic day on the water. We are just so excited to see blue whales day after day in our San Diego waters!
8/7/22 7 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It looks like these blue whales are here to stay for a while. The weather has been absolutely stunning, with beautiful blue skies and calm waters. Guests have been having the best time spotting these whales and getting great pictures. Be sure to check our social media, @nxtlevelsailing and @wagsnwhales for pictures and videos of the latest sightings.
8/6/22 4 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Captain Troy sailed to the same spot as yesterday. Sure enough, we found blue whales. One fluked several times, everyone was amazed by it’s beautiful tail. We feel so lucky to see these blue whales again this summer. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
8/5/22 7 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We went down to 9 mile bank and were so ecstatic to find 7 blue whales! There was even a cow and her calf. Everyone was so excited, it was incredible to be surrounded by spouts once again. We hope that these animals stay for awhile. There have been a lot of dolphins in these waters, so there must be an abundance for food. We look forward to sailing tomorrow!
8/3/22 2 Bryde’s Whales, LA Class Submarine, Sea Lions The weather was gorgeous. We headed out to the bank and found the same pair of Bryde’s whales! They were actively feeding and moving very quickly. With just a fluke print as a clue, Captain Troy quickly turned the boat so everyone had great views when the whale popped up again. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
7/25/22 2 Bryde’s Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions, Diesel Electric Submarine Captain Troy headed down to the Coronado Islands. Suddenly, he saw a spout. It was a Bryde’s whale. Then we saw another whale close by. These whales were moving very quickly, feeding in the area. We were able to get some great views thanks to Captain Troy’s excellent steering. We can’t wait to see you on Wednesday!
7/24/22 Blue Whale Cow & Calf, Dolphins, Sea Lions We haven’t seen blue whales for several days. We were do excited to see this adorable pair. There is a lot of food in the water, we can’t wait for tomorrow!
7/11/22 2 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We were so excited to find a blue whale cow and calf! We have not seen a mom and baby in a few weeks here in San Diego, so it was fantastic to see this pair. The baby swam right next to it’s mom. At one point, their pair was very curious about our boat and we were able to get such a close look. We are so excited for tomorrow!
7/10/22 1 Minke Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions No other whale watching boats were able to find a whale today. Captain Troy saw a bait ball and headed over to investigate. There were a ton of sea birds, dolphins, and fish. All of a sudden, he saw a spout! It was a minke whale. It was awesome to see this whale feeding in the middle of a bait ball. We are excited tomorrow!
7/9/11 800 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions While we didn’t find a whale today, guests were able to see three separate amazing pods of common dolphins. The sun was out and it was a gorgeous day. Everyone on this trip gets to come back for free. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
7/8/22 2 Blue Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins We headed out to 9 mile bank again and spotted two blue whales! At first it looked like we just saw one, but then the pair came up right next to one another. These were two big adult blue whales. It was fantastic to watching them swim right alongside one another. We are glad that they are feeding on all the food in these waters. We didn’t see wild dolphins today, but the Navy dolphins showed off when we were in the bay. We are looking forward to tomorrow!
7/7/22 1 Blue Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It looks like the same whale was out today as yesterday. We even saw more flukes and some whale poop. It was a little overcast in the morning, but the sun found its way through the clouds. It turned out to be a gorgeous afternoon. We also saw some dolphins in the mix as well. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
7/6/22 1 Blue Whale, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions The sun was out and it was a beautiful blue bird day. We even had a cute VIP guest named Max. He was an adorable English Sheepdog puppy. We spotted a wonderful blue whale that fluked several times. Everyone was thrilled to see this massive tail! Be sure to check out our TikTok for videos: @wagsnwhales. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
7/5/22 1 Blue Whale, 200 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions The seas are not flat, but they definitely calmed down since Sunday. We were so excited to find a magnificent blue whale that swam close to the boat. It fluked three separate times, everyone was able to get amazing views of it’s beautiful tail. We even saw whale poop on the last look! On our way back, we saw several bait balls with common dolphins. There is a lot of food in the water. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
7/3/22 Agitated Seas Most whale watching days in summer months are calm and sunny.  Today, the actual sea state was not as predicted. We experienced 5 foot swells at 7 seconds. It made our progress very slow out to the ocean and we were not able to get to 9 mile bank. This day was certainly not a good example of the whale watching trips that we like to provide. Everyone on this trip can come back for free. For any questions, they can also contact Fathom: [email protected] or 619-922-6215. Thanks!
7/2/22 2 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We are excited to celebrate this July 4th weekend with our guests. The weather was absolutely stunning today and there was an abundance of wildlife. There were just so many birds on our way out to the 9 mile bank today. We found two blue whales that dove under the surface for about 11 minutes. Captain Troy did a fantastic job steering the yacht America. These whales decided to come up close the boat, allowing guests to get an incredible view. It is just so exciting to see blue whales in San Diego in July. We are looking forward to a great month. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
7/1/22 1 Blue Whale, 900 Common dolphins, Sea Lions There was a lot of food in the water today. Everywhere we looked, we saw bait balls with dolphins. We were able to get close to at least three separate bait balls with tons of dolphins. We also found a magnificent blue whale. We had three cycles with this whale and it fluked for all three deep dives. It was amazing to see this beautiful animal on such a gorgeous day. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
6/30/22 2 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Such gorgeous weather! We sailed out and found two blue whales at 9 mile bank. These were two adults that were feeding. They were down for about 12 minutes. One showed us its fluke, which was very exciting. We can’t wait to go sailing tomorrow!
6/29/22 3 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It has been so hot on land the past few days. We had the most beautiful weather on the water today. Captain Troy headed straight out to the bank and found three blue whales. It was so cool to watch the largest animal on the planet gracefully swim through the water. We can’t wait for tomorrow.
6/28/22 2 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Another sunny day here in San Diego. With the help of our fellow whale watchers, we found a friendly group of 2 blue whales. One was pretty curious about our vessel. Guests were able to get great views. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
6/27/22 Submarines, Sea Lions Today unfortunately was a no whale day. Fathom went up the mast for a long time looking for whales and dolphins. Although the visibility was great and the weather was warm and sunny, there were no mammals in the ocean. Today was just a reminder that we are searching for wild animals, and we are always very lucky when we see them in their natural habitat. Everyone on this trip can come back for a free future trip. We look forward to tomorrow!
6/26/22 1 Blue Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions The winds picked up today, but the sun was out and the seas were flat. We headed out and found the same blue whale that we saw yesterday. It was in the same spot. This whale decided to show off and fluke three separate times. It was so cool to see this huge tail as the whale took a dive. We can’t wait for tomorrow.
6/25/22 1 Blue Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Another sunny gorgeous day in San Diego. We found a single blue whale out in the canyon. This whale took a beautiful dive and showed us his flukes. Everyone cheered, it was so exciting to see such a beautiful sight. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
6/24/22 2 Blue Whales,  Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today was an unbelievable day! We had the most friendly blue whale we have ever encountered. This whale swam right towards us and did circles around our boat. Captain Troy just put the boat in neutral and this whale was very curious about us. Everyone had some amazingly close views. It was incredible! We can’t wait for tomorrow.
6/16/22 1 Blue Whale, 300 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We headed south today to find a magnificent blue whale! This blue whale was the same whale that we saw a few days ago. It has 3 very distinct scratches on its dorsal fin. At one point, this whale popped up right behind us. Captain Troy immediately put the boat in neutral, guests watched in awe as this whale breathed a few times and took a deep dive. We even got to see it’s tail. What an amazing experience. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
6/15/22 400 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions There were reports of Blue Whales off of La Jolla yesterday, so we headed up that way to see if we could find them. Unfortunately, we did not find whales. However, we were able to get amazing views of a large active pod of common dolphins. There is still a lot of food in the water. We look forward to tomorrow!
6/14/22 100 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Over night, the sea state became much rougher than predicted, but it was still safe. Captain Troy told everyone at check in that the seas were higher than expected, so if anyone was prone to seasickness, today would not be a good day. He refunded anyone that wanted a refund. We also rescheduled guests who wanted to go later in the week. About 20 guests still wanted to go sailing, so we headed out to sea. Despite large swells, the seas were safe. We were able to find a nice pod of common dolphins, but unfortunately no whales. Everyone will be be able to come back for free to fulfill their whale watching guarantee.
6/12/22 5 Blue Whales, Mako Shark, Common Dolphins, Bottlenose Dolphins What a day! We had very close views of three blue whales. We could see two more blue whales a mile to the west and a mile to the south of us. We also saw a mako shark jump out of the water two times. That was crazy to see! We also found two different pods of dolphins: common dolphins and bottlenose dolphins. We will not be whale watching tomorrow, but we can’t wait to see you on Tuesday.
6/11/22 5 Blue Whales, Megapod Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Everyone was so lucky to get to be able to see two pairs of blue whale cows and calves. Both calves looked very healthy and they swam right next to their mothers. One of the calves even breached a few feet above the surface. It was so playful! We also saw the same blue whale that we saw yesterday. It had three distinct marks on it’s dorsal fin, very striking. All five blue whales were swimming in very close proximity. We also had a megapod of common dolphins swimming to the southeast of us. We asked our guests if it was okay if we were late, everyone said lets go for it! We sailed with this amazing group of active dolphins for 15 minutes. There were so many cute baby dolphins in the mix. We can’t wait until tomorrow.
6/10/22 1 Blue Whale, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins “May gray, June gloom” is not just a phrase, it’s reality here in San Diego. Don’t forget to bring your sweatshirt because it is chilly on the water with this thick marine layer. That doesn’t stop the whales. Today, we found a single blue whale that was just 8 miles from San Diego. It had three distinct lines on its dorsal fins. We also saw blows from two other whales three miles away. Guests were able to get very close views. This whale did show us its tail, but it was just a few feet above the ocean’s surface. We can’t wait to come back tomorrow!
6/9/22 4 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Offshore Bottlenose Dolphins, Sea Lions It is blue whale watching season! Every day, we are seeing blue whales off the coast. We are so excited that they are staying here, feeding on the abundance of krill in the water. We can’t wait to take you whale watching tomorrow!
6/8/22 4 Blue Whales, 800 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today we had close views of several blue whales. We did see one that had an almost non-existent dorsal fin. I took several videos of this whale in order to send to NOAA. Despite it’s dorsal fin, this whale looked very healthy. After spending some great time with the blue whales, we saw stampeding common dolphins in the distance. We checked to see if everyone was okay if we were a little late. After we received approval from the guests, we headed over and were completely surrounded by a huge group of common dolphins. There were some adorable calves that were just learning how to swim. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
6/7/22 5 Blue Whales, Sea Lions Guests were able to see blue whale flukes today! We had a single blue whale that loved to show us it’s magnificent tail. Now, this was not Bubbles, the blue whale, but it was another blue whale. It was just amazing to see this huge tail as this whale took an 11 minute dive.
6/6/22 4 Blue Whales, Sea Lions Today we found the cow and calf right away. Captain Troy decided to stay with these two the whole trip. Every day we see the calf, we notice something new. Today, this calf was diving exactly like it’s mom. We even saw both dorsal fins at the exact same time. It has been so cool to see this progression with each trip. As this calf learns how to feed on krill, we expect to watch it grow pretty substantially this summer.
6/5/22 7 Blue Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions What a spectacular day! We had representatives from NOAA join us to see just how many blue whales are in the area. The marine layer quickly burned off this morning and the ocean was very calm. We found a group of 7 blue whales, including our favorite cow and calf. The NOAA representatives were so happy to see such healthy work. All of our collaborative efforts with NOAA and the Navy are paying off. Ships are avoiding this feeding ground and they are not performing live fire exercises in the area. We are very excited to watch these whales for the whole summer!
6/4/22 Minke Whale It was a little overcast today. We headed South West to 9 mile bank. There was a pretty big rain cloud looming overhead, so Captain Troy decided to turn south. This way, everyone avoided getting soaked. We didn’t see any spouts in the distance, so we decided to head for home. We passed a car carrier, and then Diana suddenly saw a spout. We got closer and it was a minke whale! We also saw offshore bottlenose swimming with the minke. We stayed with this whale and the dolphins for as long as we could. It was finally time to get back as we were an hour late. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
6/3/22 1 Blue Whale, Offshore Bottlenose, Sea Lions The weather is getting warmer and warmer with the seas getting calmer and calmer. We heard reports of a whale just west of Point Loma about 10 miles offshore. We headed out and found a spectacular blue whale. Although this was not Bubbles, this whale did like to show us it’s flukes with every deep dive. Guests were incredibly lucky to see this magnificent creature up close. Typically, it spent about 10 minutes under water and then came up for many surface breaths. Everyone had great views. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
6/2/22 4 Blue Whales, 1 Fin Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions What a spectacular day on the water. It was so calm. It was a little overcast in the morning, but burned off throughout the day. We were thrilled to find the blue whale cow and calf! They were so cute, swimming right next to eachother. We also saw Bubbles the blue whale close by as well. All of sudden, we were also right next to a fin whale that was very curious about the boat. All in all, what a wonderful day on the water. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
5/31/22 20 Blue Whales, 3 Fin Whales, 200 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It really doesn’t get any better than this. Captain Troy even said he has never seen so many blue whales in one area. There were 20 blue whales! Everywhere we looked, we saw spouts. Some were close by, some were in the distance. We were in the canyon, 9 miles from Point Loma. Crew and guests were absolutely delighted when we also saw a blue whale cow and calf! It is so exciting to see a calf of an endangered species, particularly a blue whale. It looked very healthy as it was nursing and learning how to feed on krill. At one point, we had a whale on either side of us and Captain Troy just sailed in neutral. This was truly a once in a lifetime experience for everyone aboard. We are so excited to see so many blue whales in one spot. Let’s hope they stick around for a few weeks. Captain Troy notified the Navy and NOAA about the location of Blue Whales so they can make sure ships stay clear of this area.
5/30/22 2 Blue Whales, 4 Fin Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions The sun was shining today, it was so warm on the water. We had incredible views of two different blue whales. Bubbles, the blue whale, is still in the area and showed an incredible tail fluke for guests today. We also saw fin whales feeding within a 1/4 mile of the blue whales. It was truly spectacular. There were also about 30 common dolphins that swam with us for a short period as well. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
5/29/22 2 Blue Whales, 6 Fin Whales, 200 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We headed out to the 9 mile bank again today. There were so many whales, it was hard to know where to look. At one point, we had two fin whales on either side of us. Guests watched as dolphins swam with the whales. It was incredible. We are so excited to sail again tomorrow. See you then!
5/28/22 10 Fin Whales, 1 Blue Whale, Sea Lions, Common Dolphins The winds picked up today, but the sun was out. We headed to the same area we went to yesterday and found the same amazing pod of fin whales and blue whale. Everywhere we looked we saw spouts. Guests had super close views to a group of four fin whales that swam right next to the boat. It was incredible. We can’t wait to go whale watching tomorrow!
5/27/22 10 Fin Whales, 1 Blue Whale, 200 Common Dolphins This is a fantastic time to come whale watching in San Diego! We sailed 14.5 miles off the coast. The ocean was completely flat and the sun was out. Everywhere we looked, we saw whales. Guests had incredible views of fin whales and Bubbles, the blue whale. We can’t wait to go whale watching tomorrow.
5/24/22 4 Blue Whales, Risso’s Dolphins, LA-Class Submarine Today was an exquisite day! We headed out to 9 mile bank and saw a total of four blue whales. They were all feeding on krill, taking 10 minute dives. At one point, they were very curious about us and swam around the boat. It was truly an incredible experience. We started heading for home and much to our excitement, saw a pod of 50 Risso’s dolphins. This was a graet pod and a few of them even breached for us. Just as we were entering the San Diego Bay, we were able to witness an outbound submarine. We can’t wait to sail this weekend!
5/23/22 2 Blue Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins We were so excited to see not just one, but two huge blue whales feeding in our waters here in San Diego. We have been going to the canyon for the past couple days and have found dolphins. Today, however, we were so excited to find blue whales. One of the blue whales is named “Bubbles.” We have seen this whale in years past. It makes a distinct bubbles right before it takes a deep dive. It also fluked with each and every dive, delighting everyone aboard the yacht America. We can’t wait to go sailing tomorrow!
5/1/22 Fin Whale, Sea Lions It was a great way to kick off the new month with fantastic sights of a fin whale. We are very excited to see what the spring month brings!
4/30/22 Fin Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions What an amazing experience. We are seeing so many fin whales this week. We saw a fin whale today and a lot of common dolphins. Captain Troy notified NOAA about the abundance of fin whales in these waters so they can send scientists down to conduct research. He also notified the Navy so consider these feeding grounds when deciding how ships should enter the San Diego Bay. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
4/27/22 2 Fin Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today we saw a cow and calf ! They were such cute fin whales. The mom was showing her baby how to feed. This calf was smaller than the other calves we have seen the past few days. We are so excited to see more fin whale calves in our waters.
4/26/22 3 Fin Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It was so warm today on land. We started heading out to sea and we were met by a very thick fog. Captain Troy used the horn every two minutes to alert nearby boats. Once through the fog, it turned out to be a gorgeous day. We found three fin whales! A cow, calf, and another adult. We were so excited! We stayed with these animals and watched their fast behavior. The adults were actually lunge feeding, it was so cool to watch. They were moving very quickly and we were able to witness this at a very close but safe distance. We were an hour late to the dock but everyone had amazing views.
4/25/22 3 Fin Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions There were three fin whales today, except one was an adorable calf! It was incredible watching this small calf swim very close to it’s mom. The other adult kept a close distance to the mom and calf as well. It was a beautiful sunny day. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
4/21/22 2 Fin Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today we saw two huge adult fin whales. They were massive! These two swam right next to eachother. Listening to these whales breath is just amazing. They were also so close to the boat! Fathom was able to get some great video. Check out our instagam, @nxtlevelsailing.
4/15/22 Gray Whale Cow, Calf, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions A guest spotted a disturbance in the water. Low and behold, it was a small calf! We then saw the cow pop up right next to her calf. We were about 10 miles off the coast and watched in awe as this cow and calf made their way up to Alaska. There was a Navy ship three miles away doing standard operations. We notified this ship that we were with a cow and calf attempting to make their way up north to Alaska. After many transmissions between Captain Troy and Naval ship, they decided to make a distinct turn to the southwest so that it would stay clear of the cow and calf. Thank goodness! Whale collisions are a big problem around the world. We were so happy to help this cow and calf make a safe transit north. Good luck with the rest of your journey!
4/14/22 Risso’s Dolphins, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Although we didn’t find any whales, everyone had a fantastic experience watching a pod of 25 Risso’s Dolphins. We also saw a large pod of common dolphins that swam with the boat. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
4/5/22 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions We were absolutely shocked to fin two southbound gray whales today. They breached four times in the distance. This pair was very comfortable swimming alongside our boat. Everyone got great views. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
4/3/22 4 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins There was a group of four gray whales headed north. This was an incredible quad. They were pretty far out, 10 miles west from Point Loma. There was a lot of rolling involved, so these whales were definitely courting one last time before headed north to Alaska.
3/18/22 3 Fin Whales, Dolphins, Sea Lions We were so excited to see fin whales today! There was a mom, a calf, and an escorting male. It was an amazing experience for guests and crew alike. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
3/17/22 7 Gray Whales, 500 Dolphins, Sea Lions Happy St. Patrick’s Day! We had a very lucky day today since we found a group of seven northbound gray whales all swimming together. It was so cool to watch each one dive after one another. We were completely surround by common dolphins while we were watching the whales. We also saw another pod of dolphins close to shore. It is going to be a wonderful spring season!
3/16/22 Sunny Blue Skies, Sea Lions Even though the weather was spectacular, we were not lucky at finding sea life today. Unfortunately, we were shut out for the second day this year. Everyone will get to come back for free.
3/15/22 4 Gray Whales, Sea Lions It was a chilly morning. We headed out to sea and after traveling 12 miles, we found a group of northbound gray whales. They were wonderful whales! The marine layer burned off on our way back home.
3/14/22 1 Humpback Whale, 700 Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today was a perfect day to eat! We headed out west and Fathom saw some splashing in the distance. Upon a closer look, we found a huge pod of common dolphins. Captain Troy kept saying there would be a whale close by. Sure enough, we spotted a single humpback whale feeding with the dolphins. It was an extraordinary experience for everyone. A bluebird day with lots of activity. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
3/12/22 4 Gray Whales, Risso’s, Sea Lions We headed out west to the bank and round a group of 30 Risso’s dolphins. There were several calves in the mix. They were so cute and small! We headed back towards shore to see what else we could find and we came across a group of four northbound gray whales. These whales were only four miles from shore, so we stayed with them for a long time and headed back. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
3/11/22 12 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions What a whale of a day! We spotted Junior just off of Point Loma at the beginning of our trip. We stayed with him for a couple cycles and then we headed out west. We went all the way to 9 mile bank and found a fantastic group of four northbound gray whales. They were wonderful whales, very friendly. We also had a large group 100 common dolphins come play with the whales. Guests really wanted to watch these whales for a while, so we stayed, even though it would make us late. We headed back for home and were spoiled with so many whale spouts. We passed by a group of three, another group of three, and a single. A stampeding group of common dolphins also came towards us too. Although we were 45 minutes late to the dock, it was action packed. Guests had great views. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
3/10/22 1 Gray Whale, False Killer Whales, Sea Lions Junior is back! He was just off of Point Loma again, so everyone was very excited to see him. We sailed out west to see what else we could find. Low and behold, we spotted a pod of False Killer Whales. One of them even breached completely out of the water three times, right next to the boat! It was so cool to see these animals right next to the boat. We can’t wait until tomorrow.
3/9/22 Risso’s Dolphins, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions, LCS, Zumwalt This was the very first day of 2022 where we did not see any whales. We did find a group of 20 Risso’s dolphins, which were pretty cool to watch. Fathom went up the mast to search for whales and despite being up there for over an hour and half, she didn’t see a single whale spout. All the crew were so disappointed that we couldn’t find any whales. Everyone from this trip will be able to come back in the future anytime for a free trip. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
3/8/22 6 Humpback Whales, 1 Fin Whale, 700 Common Dolphins, spouts of 2 Gray Whales Today was truly an extraordinary day. We heard about a feeding frenzy off to the north west from our fellow whale watching boats. We knew that going up there would cause us to be an hour and a half late. We consulted with all the passengers aboard and everyone agreed that it was worth being late. Once we made it 11 miles from Point Loma, we were amazed by an abundance of whales, 500 dolphins, and sea birds. Everyone was actively feeding. It was the first time we saw humpback whales and a fin whale this year. We are so excited to see so much food in the water! On our way back home, we saw another large group of 200 dolphins stampeding. We also passed by spouts of two gray whales on our way back. Guests were able to get a quick look at the barnacles on the gray whales. There was so much diversity in the water today. This is one of the reasons we love whale watching in the spring. We can’t wait to see what we find tomorrow!
3/7/22 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Zumwalt, LCS We headed out and immediately found our little juvenile gray whale, Junior, off of Point Loma. Captain Troy headed out west after some great looks at Junior. We picked up another spout near the “whistling buoy” and sailed with this southbound gray whale for a long time. The winds started to pick up and trimmed the sails for speed. We headed home. During our trip, we saw the Zumwalt destroyer, a littoral combat ship, and a cable layer ship. It was an active day on the water, we look forward to tomorrow!
3/6/22 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions This past weekend, San Diego was hit by another storm. We had swells that went up to 9 feet with gusts reaching 30 knots. Unfortunately, we had to cancel our trips on Friday and Saturday. By Sunday, the seas had calmed down enough so that we could go whale watching. We found two separate gray whales. One was Junior. He has been in that same spot off of Point Loma for 16 days now. It’s pretty amazing, I wonder if we will see him tomorrow!
3/3/22 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions A storm is brewing. We are constantly checking the weather, but it’s quite possible that tomorrow’s trip will need to be canceled. We had a nice trip today with some very good whales. Hopefully the storm will subside by Sunday so that guests can go sailing this weekend. Tie down the hatches and get ready for some rain!
3/1/22 4 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Happy March! We are so excited that it is March, time is really sailing by here on the yacht America. We decided to go offshore again. We found a group of three gray whales, but they were a little shy. They were originally traveling south, then they turned to the west, then they turned north. We are not too sure what they were doing, but we gave them plenty of room so we did not impede their path. We finally had to head for home. On our way back, we spotted Junior. It made us late getting back to the dock, but guests really wanted to see this whale up close. We were able to get some amazing views of Junior. He even took a deep dive and showed us his flukes. Hurrah! Everyone was very happy. We can’t wait to go sailing again.
2/28/22 6 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today was our first day far off shore. We went way out to nine mile bank and found a large group of six gray whales. They were traveling very close together. All six would come up to breath at similar times, but they were swimming so close together. It was really amazing, particularly when they all took deep dives. Guests were having a wonderful time. Puppy Marie brought her friend, Cash, who is an adorable golden retriever. One of our youngest whale watchers loved petting Cash. At just four years old, she was worried about getting sea sick. With calm seas and some puppy kisses, she had the best time on the water!
2/27/22 1 Gray Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It was another calm day on the ocean! We headed out and found our friendly juvenile playing in the kelp. He was showing off, so we stayed and watched him for at least 45 minutes. We headed back and sailed with a pod of common dolphins. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
2/26/22 6 Gray Whales, White Sided Dolphins, Sea Lions Earlier this week, several trips were cancelled due to the storm passing through Southern California. With this in mind, we offered two trips. Both trips had wonderful sea conditions. The swell was very mild and the sun was out. The morning trip had virtually no wind, so the sea was calm and the weather was warm. Guests had amazing views of a large single southbound gray whale covered in barnacles. We stayed with this whale nearly the entire trip. The second trip had a stronger breeze, which was great for sailing. Always bring layers, because the wind is a little chilly. We ended up finding two pairs of gray whales and a single during the second trip. It was amazing to see whales and also see snow capped mountains from the ocean. We can’t wait to sail tomorrow!
2/24/22  4 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We headed out and immediately found a little juvenile gray whale playing in the kelp off the coast of Point Loma. After a few good looks, we headed further out and found a single southbound gray whale. We continued our journey south and found a pair of gray whales also headed south. It was time to head for home, so we turned around. There were a couple common dolphins that swam with us as we sailed home. Towards the end of the trip, the winds started to build to 13 knots. Throughout the trip, the sea was calmer than predicted at just 3 ft.
2/21/22 2 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins We set sail today for the last trip before the storm. Strong winds quickly carried the America to La Jolla where we encountered a trio of gray whales on their northbound migration. These whales have left the lagoons in Mexico early to have first access to the feeding grounds in Alaska. We saw the whale’s colorful flukes and backs covered in barnacles. Captain Troy saw a squall on the horizon, and we headed back to port just in time beat the rain. On the way back we saw some common dolphins that came to swim in the boats wake. More reports to come after the storm. Stay dry!
2/20/22 5 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Rescue! We had a very eventful day today with two trips, 5 whale sightings, and a rescue! We embarked from Shelter Island bright and early and set sail on beautiful, calm seas. Right as we rounded Point Loma we encountered 2 northbound juvenile gray whales playing in the kelp forest. After saying goodbye to these whales, we found a trio of gray whales on a late southbound migration down to Mexico. We saw birds on the horizon and Captain Troy headed over to find a pod of Pacific common dolphins feeding on delicious fish below the surface. Guests enjoyed views of the dolphins jumping completely out of the water! As we headed for home, we encountered a small boat taking on water in the mouth of the bay. One passenger was still in the boat and two were overboard. Thanks to quick action by Captain Troy and the crew, we were able to rescue all three people and their adorable dog and tow their boat to safety. If you want to see the entire rescue, check out this Youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f77TZ5CmRME
2/19/22 2 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions As soon as we left the San Diego Bay, we spotted an adorable juvenile playing in the kelp off of Point Loma. We decided to continue our journey south and we found another single gray whale by the Coronado Islands. This whale was also headed south. The ocean was calm and it was beautiful and sunny. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
2/18/22 3 Mating Gray Whales, Pacific white-sided dolphins, Sea Lions, USS Nimitz What a spectacular day! We headed out and immediately saw the USS Nimitz inbound for San Diego. She is not only the largest warship in the world, she is also the oldest. It was awesome to see her cruise past our yacht America. In the next few years, she will be decommissioned and replaced by a newer ship. It was a sunny day with a high of 67 degrees. The ocean was very flat and we found a group of three gray whales. We followed them for at least 40 minutes, then we checked out a bait ball full of Pacific white sided dolphins. The group of three gray whales then started to mate! We witnessed a lot of rolling and subsequent pectoral fins. What an special sight. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
2/17/22 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions Today, we had the pleasure of sailing with a family that wanted an exclusive private whale watching tour. With just four passengers, we set out and found a fantastic pair of southbound gray whales. It was a beautiful sunny day with flat seas. Our VIP guests enjoyed an exquisite lunch and sail back home to San Diego. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
2/16/22 1 Gray Whale, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins The heat wave is definitely over. We had one of the hottest weekends last weekends, but it rained all night here in San Diego. We actually cancelled Tuesday’s trip because of the storm. The ocean was a little bumpy with six foot swells. As the afternoon pressed on, the swells went down to just two feet. We found a very friendly gray whale that was headed north to Alaska. Guests enjoyed great views of this animal. Due to the small swell, we could see the entire body of this animal swimming under the water. That was really cool!
2/15/22 STORM- Closed With a storm coming in, we cancelled today’s trip.
2/14/22 3 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions What a perfect Valentines Day celebration! We enjoyed a fantastic sunny day with very calm seas. There were three southbound gray whales traveling very close together. The wind was just right that we even saw heart shaped blows. The sun was also perfect so everyone got to see rainbow spouts as well. It was the ultimate celebration. We can’t wait to see everyone later this week!
2/13/22 3 Gray Whales, Sea Lions We are still enjoying this heat wave, with highs in the 80’s. There were three very large southbound gray whales. Captain Troy sailed with these animals for at least an hour. Guests enjoyed fantastic views. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
2/12/22 2 Gray Whales, Minke, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today was the hottest February day in San Diego history, with a high of 91 degrees. Guests enjoyed the most spectacular sunny day with calm flat seas. Diana found a juvenile northbound gray whale and then another single gray whale. She also found a minke whale as well! There were scattered common dolphins throughout the day. What an amazing Saturday, we can’t wait for tomorrow.
2/12/22 2 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions The weather is starting to get very warm. It definitely feels like summer is already here! We found two beautiful southbound gray whales that were very friendly. Everyone saw spectacular dives as these animals showed us their flukes. The ocean was as flat as a lake. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
2/10/22 1 Gray Whale, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphin We headed out west and found a nice pod of dolphins. The weather was very hot, with a high of 83 degrees. After seeing the dolphins, we headed north to find a single southbound gray whale. It was super friendly, everyone got great views. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
2/9/22 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Common Dolphins BREACH! Today we saw a gray whale breach twice. It was a very playful adult. We also saw it spy hop several times. A guest was able to get a great video, it is posted on our instagram: @nxtlevelsailing. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
2/8/22 3 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Common Dolphins, Navy Dolphins We headed up north today and found another group of three gray whales. These animals did not swim in a straight line, but rather zig-zagged, and also sometimes swam north. That said, they were wonderful whales and guests were able to get great views. We headed south and found a large group of 300 common dolphins. Guests were so excited!
2/7/22 3 Gray Whales Mating, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions What an exciting day! Today we found three gray whales that happened to be mating. Captain Troy traveled south and found these active gray whales. Pectoral fins, flukes, and spy hopping, guests really got an incredible once in a lifetime experience. The weather has been very warm. We are looking forward to more sunny days this week!
2/6/22 3 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It was so sunny and warm today with a high of 72 degrees. The seas were as flat as a lake with hardly any wind. We headed out and found a pair of southbound gray whales.  Then we headed north an found a single gray whale. After a few views, we found a large group of 200 common dolphins. It was amazing to watch these beautiful animals under the water. The visibility was amazing. With flat water, the views were just gorgeous. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
2/5/22 2 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions What a spectacular day! We had amazing views of a pair of gray whales swimming south. Bring your family and friends for a fun filled day on the water. We even had some of our own friends come sail with us today and they had a great time.
2/4/22 6 Gray Whales, Pacific White Sided Dolphins, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions We got to see the cutest gray whale playing today! It spy hopped several times and spun around in circles with the dolphins. We saw a pair in the distance and headed south to follow them for a few cycles. Then Captain Troy found spouts out to the west. We ended up finding a group of three gray whales heading north. These whales were moving very slowly, just 2 knots. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
2/3/2022 5 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions It was another gorgeous day out on the water today. We headed south and found the most amazing group of five gray whales. They were headed south and very friendly. Guests had amazing views of these majestic animals. We also saw a large nursery pod of 30  common dolphins.
2/2/2022 3 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions
Today was a gorgeous sunny day. We headed north and found a group of 3 southbound gray whales. We stayed with them for over an hour and watched as they gracefully swam together. It was a perfect day!
2/1/2022 4 Gray Whales, Sea Lions Guests were able to see two separate southbound gray whale pairs during their trip. It was fantastic to see these animals swimming along. We did have a reminder that we are still in winter here in San Diego as it was a little cloudy and chilly.
1/31/2022 2 Gray Whales, Pacific White Sides & Common Dolphins, Sea Lions
We had a fantastic pair of southbound gray whales today. There was also a huge bait ball with two different types of dolphins. Guests even saw sea lions feeding as well!
1/30/2022 2 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins
It’s hard to believe that it’s January, the sun is shining and the seas have been so calm. We sailed out and found a wonderful pair of southbound gray whales. This pair was traveling south and had consistent cycles. We also had some amazing views of the Navy dolphins as well. We can’t wait until tomorrow. Thanks!
1/29/2022 7 Gray Whales, Sea Lions
It was a little overcast today, but the clouds really made for beautiful dramatic pictures. The seas were calm and the winds were light. We sailed out and immediately found a pair of gray whales. Their cycles were only 3 minutes, so we had a lot of surface time. We sailed north to find another fantastic pair of gray whales. They were very comfortable with us, so guests were able to see all the barnacles. We learned about a group of three whales, so we went to check out this group. The water was so clear, we could see them swimming just under the surface. It was a spectacular day for whales. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/28/2022 4 Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins
Today was another great day on the ocean. We found a fantastic pair of gray whales and followed them for at least 45 minutes. Captain Troy heard about a cow and a calf, so we headed north and found this adorable pair. The calf was so cute and playful, everyone couldn’t believe how small it looked next to mom. Despite being small, the calf looked healthy and it was swimming very well. We wished them luck and headed for home. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/23/22 3 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions Another gorgeous day out here in San Diego. We saw snow capped mountains in the distance while sailing on calm waters. We found a social single gray whale today that stayed on the surface for a long times. Guests got wonderful views as they watched this beautiful animal. After sailing for a long time, we headed north. There was a group of two whales heading north. It’s a little early to see northbound gray whales, so these animals must be hungry. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
1/22/22 2 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Such a splendid January day. These Santa Ana winds have brought in some wonderful warm weather. Captain Mike did a great job finding a pair of gray whales and matching their pace as they swam south to Mexico. We stayed with them for a long time. Everyone got great views. We then saw some common dolphins so we went and they played with our boat. It was time to say goodbye to the whales so we headed for home. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
1/21/22 5 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins We were spoiled right at the beginning of the trip with some amazing Navy dolphins doing all sorts of tricks! Did you know the Navy trains dolphins for underwater protection? Super cool. It’s so fun when the trainers decide to show off. We headed south and found a wonderful pair of gray whales. After sailing with them for some time, we headed north and found a fabulous group of three gray whales. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/17/22 4 Gray Whales, Risso’s Dolphins, Common Dolphins Today was a spectacular whale watching day! The seas were flat and the sun was peaking out. Morgan found a single gray whale headed south for Mexico. This whale came up to breath several times and would be below the surface for 6 minutes at a time. After watching a couple cycles, we headed west because Fathom saw a good sized pod of common dolphins. They were so cute! They were feeding on a bait ball, so there were a bunch of birds as well. We sailed north and passed by another single gray whale, but we kept going north because it was a little crowded with other boats. Up north, we found a pair of gray whales that were also traveling south. They were absolutely stunning and came up right next to the boat. After staying with them for at least 20 minutes, we headed back. On our way, we found the same pod of at least 50 Risso’s Dolphins. They are so cool to see. They were just outside the kelp forest off of Point Loma and they were swimming very quickly to the north west. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
1/16/22 2 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions The ocean was completely different today. It was sunny and flat! You would never know we were in high winds the day before. There was a lot of kelp in the water from the tsunami the day before. Diana found a beautiful pair of gray whales. They were so friendly and came up close to the boat. We sailed with them for a long time and had some amazing views. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/15/22 6 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Sea lions What a day! The morning started with a tsunami warning where a volcano erupted over 5,000 miles away. Captain Troy has dealt with these scenarios before, so he skillfully knew exactly what that mean for us here in San Diego. We could see the water raise the dock 2 ft, but over the course of 7 minutes, so it was slow but strong. We had two whale watching trips that day. The morning trip was incredible with calm flat seas and a group of 4 beautiful gray whales. We followed them south and it was absolutely gorgeous. We also saw some common dolphins as well. There was a little rain in the morning, but everyone had their rain jackets and it cleared up in no time. The afternoon trip didn’t have any rain, so that was wonderful. We headed south to find the group of 4, but there were heavy winds that pick up. After chatting with our fellow whale watching boats, we headed north. Amazingly, the seas were completely calm with no wind up north. We found a group of 2 whales that were very friendly. The trip ended with a stunning sunset and the most beautiful rainbows. It was a very action packed trip to say the least. All in all, it was a wonderful day!
1/14/22 9 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions Everywhere we looked, we saw gray whales. It was a whale of a time whale watching here in San Diego!
1/13/22 2 Gray Whales, Risso’s Dolphins. Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today was absolutely spectacular! The seas were calm. Dogs Marie and Baxter had a great time whale watching today. They found 2 gray whales for us! We also saw some beautiful common dolphins. Captain Troy saw a big splash! Low and behold, we found the biggest pod of Risso’s Dolphins we have ever seen. They decided to swim east, right towards Point Loma. We sailed with them for at least an hour and watched in awe as they swam alongside. It was truly a joy to see them. There were probably at least 75 – 100 Risso’s all together. We even saw some calves in the mix as well. We can’t wait for tomorrow.
1/11/22 7 Gray Whales (Cow & Calf included), Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Guests jumped aboard the Yacht America for the ultimate San Diego whale watching excursion today. The skies were clear and sunny, and the seas were calm. Captain Troy found a pair of southbound gray whales. The wind was just perfect so we could even see heart shaped blows. There were another two gray whales spotted several miles away in Mexican waters. We sailed north to see what else we could find. We were so excited to find a gray whale cow and calf! This cow and calf were so cute, the calf even become very playful. Check out our Youtube channel, Next Level Sailing, to see some great footage of this incredible experience. We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!
1/9/22 3 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions Today Captain Troy found a group of three whales. Since there were three whales, we can call it a pod. Since everyone was filming, Captain Troy said that it was a “San Diego Pod-Cast!” That got a good laugh. This weather has been wonderful. We will not be whale watching tomorrow, but we can’t wait to see you on Tuesday. Thank you!
1/8/22 2 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Pacific White Sided Dolphins We started off the weekend with a splash! Captain Troy found a pair of southbound gray whales. We also found common dolphins and Pacific white sided dolphins. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
1/7/22 3 Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Navy Dolphins It was a little overcast today, but we had a wonderful day whale watching. We headed out and found three gray whales heading south for Mexico. These whales were very comfortable with us and we stayed with them for a long time. First one gray would always come up to breath a minute before the other two would surface. We also saw some beautiful heart shaped blows. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/5/22 2 Gray Whales, Scattered Common Dolphins, Sea lions We had another sunny day here in San Diego with great southbound gray whales! We found a couple dolphins and some sea lions. It was almost warm enough for shorts once we were going downwind. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/4/22 4 Gray Whales, Bait Ball with Pacific White Sided Dolphins, Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Today was another fabulous whale watching day. We sailed out and found what we thought was a single gray whale. There was a local boat that was charging the whales, cutting in front of them, and ultimately spooking the whales. It kept coming up once to breath and then took deep dives. We did our best to educate this local boater, and we also had another whale watching boat speak to this boater as well. Once the whale had more space, we found out this was actually a pair of gray whales! They were absolutely beautiful. They came up to breath several times and would dive down for five minutes, then they would come up again. They were a beautiful pair to watch. We headed up north again and found the same local boater harassing two more whales, they were not following the guidelines that were just explained to them, and they were ultimately stressing the the whales. Captain Troy told them that we would be reporting them to the Coast Guard as they were violating the Marine Mammal Protection Act. Unfortunately, this occurs often in San Diego during our winter whale watching season. We are very excited because the Coast Guard has agreed to come out on Saturday and help enforce safe whale watching practices. We continued our journey north and found a huge bait ball. There were Pacific white sided dolphins, common dolphins, and sea lions in the mix. There were a ton of seabirds as well. We can’t wait until tomorrow!
1/3/22 2 Gray Whales, Common Dolphins, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions Whale watching dreams are made of days like today. The seas were very flat, there were beautiful sunny skies, and the visibility was incredible. We could see snow capped mountains to the east and the north. Captain Troy found a pair of gray whales swimming south to Mexico. These healthy adults were swimming very close together and they were making four minute dives. A pod of twenty common dolphins came in and swam with the whales, it was truly amazing to watch. They continued their journey south as we sailed home. We can’t wait for tomorrow!
1/2/22 3 Gray Whales, Navy Dolphins, Sea Lions  The sun was out and the seas have finally calmed down. It was a fantastic day for whale watching. We sailed south and saw a very friendly gray whale that made several deep dives, so we saw beautiful flukes. The dives only lasted three minutes, so there was a lot of surface time for guests. We sailed north and found a wonderful pair of gray whales. After watching them for a few cycles, we headed home.
1/1/22 5 Gray Whales. Common Dolphins, Sea Lions Happy New Year! We were thrilled to start off the new year with a beautiful blue sky and a sunny day. We sailed out to sea and found five gray whales. They split up into a group of four and one, and then the group of four split into two groups of two. We watched in awe as they swam alongside. Common dolphins swam towards us and played with the whales. What an incredible day. We can’t wait to see you this year!