Kayaker has surprise close-encounter with an orca


(Originally published on our sister site, Travel and Escape by Amanda Lee)

Imagine solo kayaking around British Columbia’s peaceful Hornby Island and coming nearly face-to-face with a killer whale.

That’s what happened to Louis Jobidon, who had a surprise encounter with a magnificent Orca just off the BC coastline. Jobidon has lived in BC for the past 14 years and paddles off Hornby Island every day. Jobidon told Global News he found the feeding ground for the killer whales in a cove off Hornby Island several years ago and he managed to capture his most recent encounter.

The killer whale first surfaces only a few feet away from where he is enjoying a leisurely paddle before breaking the surface and remerging next to Jobidon’s kayak. The inquisitive Orca then swims beneath Jobidon’s kayak.

“I consider myself lucky,” Jobidon told Global News. “Some people have lived here for 20 years and have never seen them.” In British Columbia, these distinctive mammals with striking black and white colouring have been spotted in numerous marine areas, including inlets and narrow channels.

Along with orcas, the residents of Hornby Island also share the shoreline with sea lions. Want to see a whale for yourself? We’ve rounded up the best places to spot a whale across the country.