From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Whales Touch Hearts of Baja Vi Whales Touch Hearts of Baja Visitors During Valentine's Day Whales Gathering for Mating and Calving Season Is Timed for a Perfect Valentine's Getaway to Baja MAGDALENA BAY, Mexico, Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Every year hundreds of gray whales migrate to Magdalena Bay, in the Baja Peninsula, for a gathering of new life and new loves around Valentine's Day and provide a great romantic getaway opportunity for nature lovers and warm-weather seekers. The exquisite beauty of the bay-on-the-Pacific, the safari-style tent camp and the intimate encounters with the friendly giants provides a perfect six-day warm-weather escape. Holiday Expeditions, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, offers four trips during the whales three-week visit to "Mag Bay" to court and calve in February and early March. (Call 1-800-624-6323) See www.bikeraft.com. "Because of the large population of whales in the area and the number of humans limited in the bay, up-close sighting and touching of whales is common," explains Holiday partner John Wood. "Amazingly these up-to-40-foot-long creatures, which were hunted to the brink of extinction in the early 1900s, actual seek out such close encounters with humans." Holiday guests are taken from the Baja beach camp to the bay in motorized eight-person "pongas" or skiffs. Because this is a very active time for the whales, the bilingual guides and boat drivers take special care not to drive on to whales. Instead, drivers strategically position the boats so that whales approach guests to solicit a human caress or smile. "While guests may spend up to six hours a day whale watching, there are plenty of other activities to do on water or land," says Wood. "Sea kayaks are available to explore nearby mangroves or landlubbers can comb the beaches to find natural treasures or bird watch." In the evenings, naturalists present revealing presentations about whales and Baja's unique eco-systems in the dining tent or guestscan simply enjoy the relaxing rhythm of lapping bay waters. The relaxing environment and warm weather is a welcome break during the cold winter and gourmet meals, featuring fresh seafood and fruit, energize the taste buds and round out the perfect ocean front experience. Holiday's whale watching trips for 1998 are scheduled for February 6, 13, 20 and March 4. Each trip is limited to 16 people and costs $1,335, including airfare and transportation from Los Angeles to La Paz, Mexico. Holiday also offers Baja sea kayaking trips, on Baja's Sea of Cortez, from October to April, and a wide variety of river rafting, mountain biking and combination rafting/biking trips in Utah, Idaho and Colorado. For a free catalog or additional information about trips and schedules, call 1-800-624-6323 or visit Holiday's web site at www.bikeraft.com.