CELEBRATING 13 YEARS 1998 - 2012
The History of Vancouver Whale Watch
Vancouver Whale Watch began in 1998 as an eco-tourism company called Captain Zodiac, at that time no one thought whale watching off the mainland was possible. Within a year Cedric Towers, the owner and founder, decided that with the right boats, both seaworthy and fast, whale watching from Steveston was very possible. Vancouver Whale Watch was the first company to offer whale watching tours from the Mainland.
Vancouver Whale Watch started with one 12 passenger zodiac, built by Titan boats. Cedric quickly realized that he needed greater passenger capacity to make the business successful. In 2000 he imported the Explorathor from the RTM, boat builders in Quebec. It was specifically designed for marine mammal viewing and gives all passangers excellent visual and picture taking opportunities.
The Explorathor Express was purchased in 2002, increasing passenger capacity to 184 people a day over two trips using all three of our vessels. In 2004 we raised the wheelhouses on the vessels allowing our Captains greater visibility. Since then we have replaced the engines and jets in both of the Explorathors. Our fleet is powered with the most fuel efficient engines available. These engines exceed emission standard requirements significantly reducing our impact on the marine environment. The benefit to our passengers is a faster, quieter and smoother ride.
Vancouver Whale Watch has been a member of the Pacific Whale Watch Association since 1999. This is a trans-boundary organization of whale watchers that acts as a voice for the industry. PWWA support a grant that funds scientific research on the Southern Resident Orcas and have developed the strictest guidelines in the world for watching Orcas. The Canadian and American governments in consultation with the PWWA and the scientific community are slowly adopting the guidelines that we have developed.
The PWWA also funds an organization called Soundwatch which is out on the water monitoring boater behaviour around the whales. They report to each company weekly on any guideline infractions that have been observed which assists in the prevention of future infractions. Cedric is Vice President of the Canadian chapter of the PWWA.
Vancouver Whale Watch is now entering its 13th season of operation with an over 90% sighting success rate in each of our previous seasons.
We look forward to a fantastic 13th season and hope you can join us.