At first I thought it was a shark. We had been in the water for an hour. We were the only ones out when some dolphins showed up. Something seemed weird, and then a brown shape came out out of the water, one I had never seen before. It was bumpy and scarred. First the fear set in. The second time the shape appeared, I knew it was moving too slow to be shark. Then she blew her spout. We were so stoked. Freaking out. We paddled over. She was 15 ft away. She was just flopping around checking us out. Everyone on the beach was on their feet watching us. It was crazy. Ten minutes of this madness passed, and then out of no where it breeched... it was 20 ft long. And then, off she went, up to Alaska. April 6, 2012. This was by far one of the craziest days of my life.
The whale photo is from the inter-web.
The inter-web says it was a baby Gray whale migrating North, as they do along the California coast in April. I am quite glad I did not see the 53 ft mother she was traveling with.