Miracle escape from the jaws of a whale: Two women kayakers lucky to be alive after hungry humpback whale scoops them up in Avila Beach, California, before spitting them out
- Julie McSorley and Liz Cottriel were kayaking and whale spotting on Monday
- A humpback whale suddenly emerged and appeared to swallow the whole kayak
- Both women escaped unharmed but onlookers feared they had been swallowed
A humpback whale nearly swallowed two women whole when it leaped out of the water into their kayak.
Julie McSorley and her friend Liz Cottriel were whale watching in Avila Beach, California, on Monday afternoon.
The pair were sat in a kayak watching the whales below the surface when they had their close call.
A humpback whale nearly swallowed two women whole when it leaped out of the water into their kayak
Footage taken by another whale watcher shows the mammal scoop up the boat and the two friends, taking everyone by surprise.
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 paddleboarders and kayakers quickly rushed over to help the two women.
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
Fortunately Julie resurfaced first and seconds later, Liz also escaped unharmed.
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!’