MEeting the orcas of Norway
A rush of shimmering silver blades in the opaque blue green waters was the first indication. Straining to see into the gloom and with heart beating heavily in my chest a large male emerged into focus heading in my direction. Setting a deliberate and unhurried course, he gave the shoal of, justifiably, skittish herring scant attention as he softly glided through the water towards me. We held eye contact as he passed only feet from where I was bobbing in the icy cold water both of us passing curious judgement, albeit he with significantly greater poise, elegance and confidence.
Weather and nature are unreliable unpredictable beasts and patience is critical in wildlife experiences.
Therefore, to be dropped into a pod of orcas feasting on a huge swirling carousel of herring on day one of our trip was stunning good fortune. Having said that, fortune and luck are not always pure chance. Great credit goes to Patrick, our guide, who arranged a last minute relocation from Hamn to Tromvik as the whales and herring had inconsiderately decided to stay further north this year. Having been in Tromvik over the season, Patrick knew where the whales would be and within 40 minutes of setting off from dock we were gently idling in a fjord as Patrick became increasingly excited about the potential development of a feeding situation. Then, with an urgent and croaky charge of "Go, go, go", I nervously plunged / collapsed into the water and one of the most memorable experiences of my life!