Appeal commenter racqoon alerted us to the above video of the Ocean Beach whale‘s final trip into what I believe is unconsecrated ground.

Believed to be either an (endangered) fin or (also endangered) sei whale (the Marine Mammal Center’s doing DNA tests to determine that), the body was large enough to require a crew to spend most of Tuesday digging a grave for it on at Ocean Beach.

George Durgerian of the Golden Gate National Recreational Area told the Ocean Beach Bulletin that “the body will be buried far enough away from the tide line to not be exhumed by even the highest tides.” According to the Examiner, the whale’s buried under 3 feet of sand.

You can see the whale’s entire journey from shore to grave in the (speeded up, thank goodness) video above.

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at eve@sfappeal.com.

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  • tomprete

    Thanks for the Ocean Beach Bulletin shout-out, Eve. You’re boss!

  • tomprete

    Thanks for the Ocean Beach Bulletin shout-out, Eve. You’re boss!

  • Eve Batey

    Thanks for going out there and getting the scoop, Tom! (And congrats on launch!)

    How did the whale smell another day in? On Monday it was just kind of ripe, I’ll bet by Tuesday it was pretty stunning!

  • Eve Batey

    Thanks for going out there and getting the scoop, Tom! (And congrats on launch!)

    How did the whale smell another day in? On Monday it was just kind of ripe, I’ll bet by Tuesday it was pretty stunning!

  • tomprete

    Oops, missed this! Very busy, as I’m sure you understand.

    The smell was not too bad, in my opinion. Nowhere near as bad as some people seemed to think. A few people kept hands or sleeves over their faces, but I’ve smelled a couple of dead whales, around 20 dead seals or sea lions, and a dead elephant seal. Plus various birds and fish and land animals. So my perspective may be a bit abnormal.

    In any case, this whale was nowhere near as bad as the elephant seal, which probably had been dead and out of the water for well more than a week. I had to pull a very large and furry dog out of the elephant seal carcass, and the dog was pretty well coated in rancid blubber. The video doesn’t show any parts breaking off the whale, so it can’t have been too rotten.

  • tomprete

    Oops, missed this! Very busy, as I’m sure you understand.

    The smell was not too bad, in my opinion. Nowhere near as bad as some people seemed to think. A few people kept hands or sleeves over their faces, but I’ve smelled a couple of dead whales, around 20 dead seals or sea lions, and a dead elephant seal. Plus various birds and fish and land animals. So my perspective may be a bit abnormal.

    In any case, this whale was nowhere near as bad as the elephant seal, which probably had been dead and out of the water for well more than a week. I had to pull a very large and furry dog out of the elephant seal carcass, and the dog was pretty well coated in rancid blubber. The video doesn’t show any parts breaking off the whale, so it can’t have been too rotten.

  • tomprete

    Oops, missed this! Very busy, as I’m sure you understand.

    The smell was not too bad, in my opinion. Nowhere near as bad as some people seemed to think. A few people kept hands or sleeves over their faces, but I’ve smelled a couple of dead whales, around 20 dead seals or sea lions, and a dead elephant seal. Plus various birds and fish and land animals. So my perspective may be a bit abnormal.

    In any case, this whale was nowhere near as bad as the elephant seal, which probably had been dead and out of the water for well more than a week. I had to pull a very large and furry dog out of the elephant seal carcass, and the dog was pretty well coated in rancid blubber. The video doesn’t show any parts breaking off the whale, so it can’t have been too rotten.

  • tomprete

    Oops, missed this! Very busy, as I’m sure you understand.

    The smell was not too bad, in my opinion. Nowhere near as bad as some people seemed to think. A few people kept hands or sleeves over their faces, but I’ve smelled a couple of dead whales, around 20 dead seals or sea lions, and a dead elephant seal. Plus various birds and fish and land animals. So my perspective may be a bit abnormal.

    In any case, this whale was nowhere near as bad as the elephant seal, which probably had been dead and out of the water for well more than a week. I had to pull a very large and furry dog out of the elephant seal carcass, and the dog was pretty well coated in rancid blubber. The video doesn’t show any parts breaking off the whale, so it can’t have been too rotten.