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Man shares the waves with killer whale for 45 minutes... because the surf was 'too good to miss'
By CHRIS JOHNSON
Last updated at 1:57 AM on 14th January 2009 from The London Daily Mail
As he enjoyed catching a few waves, experienced surfer Craig Hunter had no fear of becoming the hunted as he shared the waters with a killer whale.
Rather than turning back to shore after paddling out past the breakers to be confronted by a giant dorsal fin, he decided the surf was just far too good too miss.
For the next 45 minutes he bravely shared the waves with the giant Orca and, without realising it, two young calves.
The Orca, a regular visitors to the Taranaki coast in New Zealand, paid little attention to the surfers at Stent Rd surf break near Cape Egmont on Saturday.
Hunter, who has been surfing off New Zealand's North Island for almost 50 years, said: 'There was no way I was going in because the waves were too good.'
'It's pretty awesome. It's a pretty special sort of feeling.
'I was out there on my own for quite a while and the big fella was just cruising. It was really neat.'
Hunter, known to his surfing friends as Billy, said it was not the first time he had surfed with an Orca and added that he was too old to be bothered by the possibility of being attacked.
'My outlook is they are big enough and quick enough. If they thought I was a seal, I'd be long gone.'
When I see a picture like that I always wonder if it's something that has been photo-shopped but this one and the story seems to be legit. But I think I'll be just fine watching the action from shore. There is just something about the name "Killer"....
That's a cool picture, and that guy is much cooler than I am. I have read stories of killer whales toying with divers by swimming straight at them and abruptly stopping within a few feet and "blowing" them back. I don't know how true they are, but at the very least orcas seem to be better at differentiating between seals and divers than great whites are.
That is a great story. I agree that this guy has stones. I have seen (on video of course) orcas throwing around a seal in an apparent game or life lesson....no thanks. However to be the one taking that picture, would be an extreme thrill for me.
HITLER IS NOT AOW - Download your copy here available from my website Diving My Way
Spoken by the arresting Officer: "If you take your hands off the car, I'll make your birth certificate a worthless document."
We got to snorkel with Orcas in La Paz in 2006. A small pod came over to check out our dive boat. They were curious but very calm. The dm got in first, no reaction from the whales, so we all quietly put on masks and fins and over we went. The whales mostly swam around about 20 yards or so from us. I have a few snapshots of a mother and calf from a cheap underwater film camera. Very cool experience.
It was just below freezing and snow was falling steadily. As we stepped toward that portal separating a cold and dreary world from the tranquility and wonder of another dimension teeming with life and color a passer-by shook his head and muttered "crazy". Poor fool. If he only knew. (Airsix)