So, I definitely missed the boat on this one (pun intended), but apparently last month NOAA updated their Whale Alert App. The app uses GPS, wireless internet and nautical chart information to help mariners see where the whales in their vicinity are in order to avoid them. Depending on where you sail, this app might be just as important for your navigation as an actual GPS unit, as hitting a whale not only harms these endangered creatures, but can also be dangerous for your boat and anyone on it.
The recent update to this free app now includes California marine Protected Areas, PORTS (Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System) tide and weather data and the ability to report whale sightings to databases for NOAA and marine biologists. Previously, the app focused primarily on the East Coast waters, but now mariners can download a version designed specifically for the Channel Islands and San Fransisco area.
The app is free to download, but is only available for iOS, unfortunately. For more information on the West Coast version of this crucial app, visit the Whale Alert west coast app website or take a look at the full site to see why you need this app (or if you do) by clicking here.