Onlookers get an up-close view of orcas at Lime Kiln Lighthouse

SAN JUAN COUNTY -- There's just something indescribable about seeing southern resident orcas.

Orca advocates and people who live in the San Juan Islands are still talking about the discovery of an orca calf swimming with a pod that had not been spotted by researchers for two months.

People watching from the shore at the Lime Kiln Lighthouse also got an up-close look at the orcas.

"I am geeking out, it was really, really cool," said Garrett Waiss, who was visiting the area from Bainbridge when he saw the orcas.

The frequently absent southern residents made a splash of an entrance in the waters they call home. These days, whale watchers at Lime Kiln Lighthouse rarely see a show.

"You come here all the time and you never get to see it," Waiss said.

But for two days in a row, their patience paid off, and only one word can describe the timing.

"Luck. Total luck," said Waiss.

The visit was quick, and after two days the orcas took off for the coast.  However, the memories they left behind will last a lifetime.

Video credit: Garrett Waiss