Lonely Planet Writer

Kayakers surprised by giant humpback whale off the coast of Vancouver

Two friends kayaking in Vancouver’s English Bay were shocked by a surprise encounter with a humpback whale.

Kayaker surprised by giant humpback whale in Vancouver
Kayaker surprised by giant humpback whale in Vancouver Image by Screengrab Youtube

A film posted to Youtube by Johnny Olnyk shows him and his friend Wade Peeler waiting to catch a glimpse of the humpback, which the pair had spotted earlier in the week. “My friend was trying to free up space on his phone so he could shoot more video,” Johnny O posted to Youtube. “The whale had not surfaced for a while so we were ununsure of where it was.”

The video shows as suddenly the whale breaches right next to one of the kayaks, offering an amazing view of his back and tail as they sink back into the ocean, while also causing momentary shock in Johnny O’s friend. “My heart started racing when I saw small fish swimming to the surface in a frenzy, I knew it must be close. This was the most amazing wildlife experience of my life, a true bucket-list moment. You can hear in my voice how excited I was,” the post to the video reads. Humpback whales are often spotted in the English Bay in Vancouver which is a popular whale-watching site.

Watch video here