Two kayakers in California had a lucky escape when a humpback whale breached the water and landed on their kayak.
Footage of the incident near Monterey Bay’s Moss Landing Harbor was filmed by a passenger on a whalewatching trip organised by Sanctuary Cruises, who posted it to their YouTube account:
"On our 08:00 am Sanctuary Cruises whale tour, just outside the harbor in Moss Landing, two kayakers on a tandem kayak were almost crushed to death by a massive, near full-size humpback whale."
"We stopped to see a large aggregation of humpbacks feeding and carrying on with random acts of hijinks. There were also a lot of kayakers right in the middle of it all. Humpbacks were coming up next to and in the middle of many kayakers. It was amusing. It’s all fun and games until someone gets jumped on
"The next thing we knew, this thing launched right on top of these two kayakers. That was heavy."
Thankfully, the two kayakers were unharmed - but we imagine a little shook. One of the kayakers, Tom, told Inside Edition what happened.
"We were taken under the water by the whale, perhaps in the down-draft," he said. "I think it brushed against me while I was out of the kayak… Neither of us know how we weren’t ended there and then."
When they surfaced, the couple "definitely understood how lucky we were, and were pretty confused.
Captain Mike Sack of Sanctuary Cruises explained that this was one of the more dangeous close encounters he has seen as a full-size humpback can weigh 40 tons.
"This was one of the more dangerous situations that I’ve seen out here," he said. "All of a sudden, this massive full-size whale does a full 180-degree breach and lands stomach first either right on top of or right next to two kayakers."
"Kayak whale watching can be extremely dangerous. And one should realize that humpback whales are wild animals and totally unpredictable."
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