You can pay to see orcas, the famous so-called killer whale, in captivity at SeaWorld, or you can take a more humane but probably just as expensive whale watching excursion, to spot the orca in its natural environment — from the safety of a large ship.
Or you can do what Louis Jobidon did — though he didn’t plan it this way. Fortunately for all of us, Jobidon had a video camera rolling the whole time, apparently attached to his helmet, and earlier this year, he posted this amazing video which at the same time is heart-stoppingly scary, and breathtakingly beautiful.
Here’s what happened. Jobidon, back in late February, was out for a solo kayaking run around Hornby Island, off the coast of British Columbia, as he has done most every day for the past 14 years — as long as Jobidon, who is obviously an avid kayaker, has been living in the area.
But he says that several years ago, he found a spot in the sea where killer whales gather to feed. He’s been paddling around that spot ever since, but this time, he brought his camera.
While most killer whales are observed from a safe distance, as you’ll see in Jobidon’s video, one friendly fellow surfaces just a few feet from Jobidon, who as usual is alone in his kayak. The beautiful and majestic whale swims directly underneath the tiny vessel, then beaches the surface again.
The whale’s pals can be seen doing their own breaching in the distance.
Somehow, Jobidon keeps his cool — well, mostly — throughout the close encounter, which easily could have turned deadly if, say, the whale had capsized his kayak. But he came out of the remarkable experience not only unharmed, but with an experience that few human beings are privileged to share — an up close and personal meeting with one of nature’s most beautiful and complex beings.
“I consider myself lucky,” Jobidon later said. “Some people have lived here for 20 years and have never seen them.”
Check out Louis Jobidon’s amazing killer whale video and then let us know — what would you do if you came just feet from a killer whale in the open ocean?