On most occasions, whale watching offers a calming opportunity to reconnect with nature and witness the graceful acts of Earth's largest modern mammals.
Until, that is, those graceful animals beat you over the head with their flipper. That was the unfortunate result of a whale-watching trip in a lagoon in Baja California, Mexico, on Saturday (Feb. 22), when 20-year-old Canadian Chelsea Crawford was smacked on the side of her head by a gray whale's flipper. Crawford managed to remain inside the small whale-watching boat, and did not experience any major injuries, the Canadian news channel CTV Atlantic reported on Wednesday (Feb. 26).
Crawford told CTV News that the fin felt "hard" and "boney," but that the smack did not seem to be a malicious act — rather, the whale almost seemed to be trying to play with those inside the boat.