Tsibass Lagoon Whales

On May 15th, 2023, a friend and I were trying to figure out how to get into the Tsibass Lagoon located in Actaeon Sound which is connected to Drury Inlet. This lagoon partially empties and fills with every tidal exchange, and is located in a pretty remote portion of British Columbia, Canada.

To get into the lagoon, you have to time your entry at a high tide, and wait for the water to finish rushing in. When we arrived, it was still moving very fast - around 5 knots at least, so we decided to stop at a rock bisecting the incoming flow and look at the situation.

Charts of the area can be found here.

Our location

We were on a rock right in the middle of the inflow/outflow of the lagoon.

Wider view of our location
Even wider view

The lagoon itself is 2.3 nautical miles long and about 1/2 a nautical mile wide. Listed max depth is around 80 feet, but it is pretty shallow most places.

Within seconds of getting up onto the rock, we saw that there were whales inside the lagoon playing or feeding in the inflow current! We spent almost an hour watching them, taking pictures, listening to them surface, and enjoying the view. I stitched together some pretty terrible phone video below.

I went back the day after and took a bigger camera in an effort to try to identify what types of whales these were. Initially some folks thought they were belugas, but now it seems clearer that they are gray whales, and one appears to have leucism (making the white color) which was interesting to folks that track whales.

Here is a much better video followed by a photo dump of the best pictures out of around 1500 I took 🤣

A very magical experience to see them playing or feeding in the inflow. Just a little worried they might be trapped, but hopefully not!

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