A Whale Of An Encounter For World Champion Paddleboarder
Northern NSW; September 22nd: Eight-time World Paddleboarding champion Jamie Mitchell (Gold Coast) had a close encounter with a migrating humpback whale today while filming off the Northern NSW coast for his new television project “Living in Liquid”.
The big wave surfer, who won the 32-mile Molokai to Oahu paddle race in Hawaii last month admitted to being a bit shocked when the pod of whales started surfacing so close to his paddleboard.
“At first it was kind of scary because they are just so big,” said Mitchell.
“But after a while, the whales were just happy to swim right up to me, I think they were checking me out especially the one that surfaced right in front of me.”
Scientists predict that up to 13,000 humpbacks make the journey along the eastern seaboard each year.
“They have amazing control in the water, so I relaxed and enjoyed the experience. I have a even greater respect for them now, they are so cool,” added Mitchell.
Mitchell’s televsion project, “Living In Liquid” follows his amazing life as he challenges himself against the world’s oceans – to date he has ridden 60 foot waves off the coast of California and is hoping to better that. He will also attempt to dive without oxygen to 100 foot, then get washed out to sea and stand up paddleboard a 50-foot wave.
For more information on Jamie Mitchell and the “Living In Liquid” Project go www.jamie-mitchell.com