Passengers, a videographer and even the skipper are still shaking their heads over an unusually close encounter with a Pacific blue whale from a viewing boat in the fleet of Captain Dave's Dolphin and Whale Safari Friday afternoon off Dana Point.
"Dude, that was a miracle," a woman can be heard saying on the video after the jump . . .
The large mammal had been swimming alongside the boat, which is bound to happen in what CaptainDave Anderson
calls "the largest concentration of blue whales off the coast of California." So, the boat was stopped to give passengers on the deck and in the glass underwater viewing pod a better look. That's when the whale brushed right up next to the craft.
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In all his experience sailing out of Dana Point Harbor, this was the closest one has ever come to his vessel, Anderson said afterward.
"And yes, I was very nervous," Anderson recounts in a short message that concludes the above video. "I don't know why the whale kept coming toward us, but it was his choice--and who am I to argue with a 160-ton animal that's 80 feet long?"
Leslie Jeanne Morava, who was in the viewing pod, shot the underwater footage, and she recounts the moment her eyes met one of the mammoth beast's. "I was so excited I was shaking," she says. "It was an incredibly close encounter, I mean, he must have been feet from me."
Captain Dave notes in been a great week for whale watching as he plugs his website that has more details on his trips and rates: DolphinSafari.com.