Few things compare to the excitement of getting up close to whales in the wild, but a video posted to YouTube this week proves there may be such a thing as "too close for comfort."
The video, uploaded by B.C. kayak tour company Wildcoast Adventures, shows three different perspectives of the same encounter with a female humpback whale and her calf near Von Donop Inlet.
The whales take turns breaching, coming progressively closer to a small group of kayakers. The final clip, recorded by one of the paddlers, Heather Lawrence, captures the delight of the group as the calf performs a majestic dive — and their screams as the mother suddenly explodes out of the water less than 100 meters away.
Wildcoast says the video serves as a reminder of the power and speed of these marine animals and the importance of maintaining a safe distance when whale-watching.
Watch the whole thing below: