Whale Watching & More With Al Gauron's

By Liz Premo, Beach News Staff Writer

Beach News, Thursday, July 6, 2006

[The following article is courtesy of Beach News.]

HAMPTON -- Want to spend some time on a comfortable, seaworthy boat, kicking back and enjoying the ocean air while looking for some of the sea's most impressive creatures?

Then come aboard with Al Gauron's whale watching excursions. Departing from the state pier at Hampton Harbor, the leisurely five-hour trips take place daily from 1:30-6:30 p.m. during the months of July and August.

The public has become more aware of the endangered giant species which swim and feed in the ocean waters. As a result, whale watching has greatly gained in popularity, including here in the Seacoast area.

Going on a whale watch is a great way to enjoy the beauty of being surrounded by limitless ocean and sky (the boat typically travels 10-40 miles from shore, averaging 15-25 miles during the summer peak). Add to that the exciting opportunity to see mammals who populate the deep, and it's a recipe for a fun time with family and friends.

And just what sights can be seen during a whale watching excursion with Al Gauron's? Keep your eyes open for finbacks, humpbacks, and minke whales, as well as the possibility of spotting large sharks, dolphins, seals and a variety of seabirds. Be sure to have that camera at the ready.

While the whale watches are an excellent source of enjoyment for those who venture out to sea, there's a purpose that goes along with the pleasure: As part of a network of research boats, Al Gauron's fleet gathers information on every whale watch.

This information is then sent on to Gloucester, Massachusetts Cetacean Research unit. From there, scientists forward it to similar research units located around the globe.

An added bonus: Whale "adoptions." Groups have the opportunity to "adopt a whale" by making a donation, with the amount raised going to further the scientific research.

Whale watching excursions range in price from $30 for adults and $25 for Senior Citizens, to $21 for juniors and $16 for children.

Participants are encouraged to bring a sweatshirt or jacket to ward off any chills and to wear rubber-soled footwear to get a good grip on the deck. And don't forget to bring a camera (and plenty of film it it's not a digital model). Refreshments and beverages are available for purchase onboard the boat.

In addition to great whale watching excursions, Al Gauron's also offers a variety of deep sea fishing trips. Take the four-hour trip (3-12 miles from shore and go fishing for mackerel and bluefish. Depending upon the season, there's also cod, pollack, haddock, and cusk to be caught. The haul for the all-day, 8-1/2 hour fishing trip (12-20 miles from shore) may include cod, pollack, haddock, redfish, wolf fish, and hake.

Back on land, Al Gauron's has a restaurant, gift shop and tackle shop for the convenience of everyone, and parking is available in the state lot. Reservations are recommended; group rates are available; and Visa, MasterCard and business checks are accepted.

From fantastic whale watches to fishing trips, Al Gauron's fleet of boats ("The White Star," "The Starfish" and "The Northern Star") and their capable crews ensure a great day of fun on the Atlantic Ocean for all. For more information and schedules, call Al Gauron's Deep Sea Fishing and Whale Watching at (800) 905-7820 or visit www.algauron.com.