VIDEO: Rare close encounter with whale pod spotted off B.C. waters

Pod of southern resident orca whales breach within arms length of whale watchers

“Wow” is a common word used by whale watchers, but the wow factor of this encounter was greater than most.

A pod of Southern Resident orca whales passed so close to the shore, bystanders along Galiano Island could have reached out and petted them.

“I could have put my hand in and touched one, but I respect them so much I would never want to interfere with their natural tradition,” said Rachelle Hayden, who was standing along the edge of the shore in the video.

RELATED: Humpback rubs against whale-watching boat near Campbell River

Hayden, a Galiano Island resident had gotten a phone call from a friend who gave her the heads up the pod of whales were heading through Active Pass. She ran out with her husband who took the video as whales breached right off the shore.

“You will see J46, Star, a female orca actually looks right at me and stops and stares at me,” Hayden continued. “I felt like she was trying to communicate… all I could do as a human was wave but I felt like there was a communication.”

RELATED: Humpbacks breach so close man can smell whale

Hayden, who runs a Tour Galiano had seen whales before, but never that close and remembers being so excited with the encounter she has since watched the video 1,000 times.

“It was incredible I was so happy, it has brought happiness to other people watching it (too),” she said.

arnold.lim@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

‘Justice for Mona’ rally planned for Surrey

Security camera footage shows Mona Wang being dragged, stepped on during RCMP wellness check at UBCO

Sources receives $70K from SurreyCares

Funds will help with warehouse space for food programs in Surrey, White Rock, Langley

Drive-in movies coming to Cloverdale

Dolittle, Trolls World Tour playing one night each at rodeo grounds

Rooftop hatchlings ‘a nice addition’ to White Rock RCMP operations

Pair of seagull chicks hatched in ‘fenced playground’ on July 2

COVID-19: ‘Contactless’ donation drive in Surrey to help women in need

Items needed for women in shelters, transition houses in the Lower Mainland

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Police nab three impaired drivers in one night in Maple Ridge

Ridge Meadows RCMP served 80 impaired driving infractions in June

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Lower Mainland YouTubers claim to be Kelowna display toilet ‘poopers’

RCMP can not speak to legitimacy of video, will be investigating

Haida matriarchs occupy ancient villages as fishing lodges reopen to visitors

‘Daughters of the rivers’ say occupation follows two fishing lodges reopening without Haida consent

Most Read