Out on the ocean the first thing you do is discover your sea legs. Not everyone has them. Assuming all is Ok on that front, you quickly appreciate that watching the whales is so transitory that you cannot be a blogger, photographer and raconteur all at the same time. Something has to give, so in this case it was the photography. Let's put it this way - they do what they want when they want it and with these gentle giants you cant really argue and freeze the frame, but just enjoy the momentary spectacle their breaching, blowing and diving provide. In other words, forgive the crap pictures - you will get but a soupçon of their greatness.
A little about them. The eastern coastline in Australia comes alive with humpback whales from June to November. In June they migrate north to mate and give birth and in September to November they are heading back to the Southern Ocean with their young. Of course they were largely hunted for years and years which decimated their population but they are now a protected species so their numbers are slowly creeping up again. They can live to be 80 and for mammals of such size they are the most proficient ballerinas I have ever come across. When they breach they lift themselves out of the water like they are pirouetting and when they fall back they often twist their body elegantly displaying their tummy with or without barnacles. To titillate us they will also flick their enormous tail occasionally and roll in and out of the waves effortlessly and buoyantly.
We saw a pod of several, a little at a distance, but closer a mummy with a baby, gently slipping in and out of the water with an occasional blow of their spout to make sure we knew exactly where they were.
Given that capturing them was hard work I turned to more manageable tasks, of capturing the rapture of the people on the boat and some lovely boys.