By Jack Williams
This is the stunning moment a group of passengers experienced a moment they would never forget, as a pod of giant grey whales decided to play with – and even push along – their vessel.
In the amazing footage, the giant mammals can be seen first approaching the side of the boat, allowing riders to pet its head and even give it a kiss.
As the encounter continued, though, things became more and more surreal, as the whales even rose from the waters, somewhat encouraging riders to play with them.
Then, the mammals moved its playful intentions to the back of the boat, pushing the vessel along in a moment which awestruck friends Charles Harmer and Mike Nulty were able to capture.
The once-in-a-lifetime encounter took place on March 5, 2018, in the waters off Guerrero Negro, Baja California Sur, Mexico.
The pair only recently released all of their footage, which, they hope, offers a unique perspective into the incredible behaviour of these animals.
Though others may not encourage the touching such animals in the wild, Charles, owner of Silver Shark Adventures, said, if the whales were not fond of such interactions, they would not have continued to return to the boat and its 12 passengers.
Charles added: “Regarding the science and behaviour as to why may these whales display such behaviours, I believe they, like humans, are mammals and animals.
“They clearly enjoy the feeling of being touched and tend to feed off of the emotions of people.
“I, personally, have spent much time with the grey whales in these lagoons during the previous 10 years, observing their numerous and varied behaviors and nothing they do totally shocks me anymore.”
Charles said that on this given day there were three to four whales in the area, but there was one “mother whale” that had the most playful of intentions and can be seen most frequently in the footage that was taken.
The area, Charles added, is arguably the prime spot in the world for such encounters – though this event was far more incredible than others.
Working with whales as part of his eco-tour company, the Los Angeles resident added that the most enjoyable thing about observing such creatures is that you always have to expect the unexpected
Charles said: “This type of encounter and experience is definitely a once-in-a-lifetime.
“There is nowhere else on the planet where one can experience something of this nature.
“Touching whales where the whales are the ones initiating the contact: it’s something I wish everybody could experience.
“I believe an experience like this would drastically change the minds of so many.
“It truly doesn’t get much better than this!”