Kayaker films the terrifying moment she and a friend are almost swallowed by humpback whale before it spat them both back out
- Julie McSorley and Liz Cottriel were kayaking and whale spotting on Monday
- McSorley filmed the wild encounter on her cellphone
- A humpback whale suddenly emerged and appeared to swallow the whole kayak
- Both women escaped unharmed but onlookers feared they had been swallowed
Two women kayaking filmed the terrifying moment a humpback whale nearly swallowed them when it leapt out of the water and fell on their kayak.
Julie McSorley and her friend Liz Cottriel were whale watching in Avila Beach, California, on Monday afternoon, when they had the close encounter.
The pair sat in kayaks while watching the whales below the surface when they had their close call with the large mammal.
Footage taken by the duo shows the moment when they were sent flying in the air as the large whale breached the surface.
Two women kayaking in California were almost swallowed up by a humpback whale. One of the women’s phone captured the terrifying moment
The women were left frazzled but unharmed by the close encounter
Julie McSorley (left) and her friend Liz Cottriel (right) were whale watching in Avila Beach, California, on Monday afternoon.
The pair’s screams are muffled as they fall into the water.
Julie McSorley was filming on her cellphone the moment they were tossed into the air.
Small fish can be seen flying around the pair, so the whale could have been trying to grab a bite to eat.
Another video, taken by a fellow whale watcher shows the hunchback whale scoop up the boat and the two friends, taking everyone by surprise.
Paddleboarders rush to the pair to make sure they haven’t been swallowed by the whale
Several bystanders captured the wild moment
The pair were lifted into the air in the jaws of the whale but they fortunately managed to escape.
Liz told Fox 26 News: ‘I’m thinking to myself, “I’m gonna push.” Like, I’m gonna push a whale out of the way! It was the weirdest thought. I’m thinking, “I’m dead. I’m dead.” I thought it was gonna land on me,’ Cottriel said. ‘Next thing I know, I’m under water.’
Concerned paddle boarders and kayakers quickly rushed over to help the two women.
Fortunately Julie resurfaced first and seconds later, Liz also escaped unharmed.
Footage taken by another whale watcher shows the mammal scoop up the boat and the two friends
The pair were lifted into the air in the jaws of the whale but they fortunately managed to escape
The pair managed to retrieve the kayak and ride it back to shore.
Liz said: ‘We got back to the car, I was shaking my shirt and a bunch of fish came out of my shirt.’
The only damage was Julie losing her car keys in the close call but both survived unharmed.
Liz said: ‘I was infatuated by them and in awe. But I never expected one to be right here, in my face!’