Hitting the Australian seas can bring a whole host of issues, some more frightening than others… From the pro-surfer whose gear was destroyed by an errant airline to a local legend who endured an absolutely gruesome shark attack only a few weeks ago, it’s safe to say that some incidents are a little more life-changing than their mildly-irritating counterparts. Now, Lewis Loughlin, a veteran ocean photographer, has captured the spine-chilling moment when he came face to face with one of the ocean’s most feared creatures.
Geading out off the coast of Sydney in the early hours of the morning, you could argue that the jet-skiing Loughlin brothers got exactly what was coming to them, given that the pair had explicitly set out looking for a beast such as this. Bathed in the soft glow of the morning light, their mission came to fruition a lot quicker than they appear to have expected, with a shark approaching only a matter of minutes later… and getting a little closer than they’d bargained for.
WATCH: The pair came face to face with the beast from a multitude of angles…
In the immensely impressive drone footage, it’s pretty hard to miss the inquisitive great white shark — that’s the same size as their whole jet ski — approaching them repeatedly. Understandably overwhelmed by the encounter, Loughlin took to Instagram to express his astonishment: “We’ve come across some incredible creatures on the water, but this encounter has to top the lot” he wrote, before continuing…
“The curious great white shark came over for a closer inspection of us foreign aliens visiting their waters. A beautiful encounter with a fascinating creature.”Lewis Loughlin
Far better than Loughlin’s caption, however, are the pair’s real-time reactions as the apex predator comes over for a look around. First, the men correctly say that the shark is “a decent size”, which is quickly upgraded to “he’s huge!”, with a little more trepidation in their voices, before acknowledging that “he’s coming right towards us!” Loughlin’s enthusiasm is evidently infectious, as his video has racked up over 17,500 views at time of writing, with a swathe of similarly excited comments adorning the post.
One viewer seemed outwardly envious, describing the pair as “so lucky”, while another was bowled over by the spectacle, calling it “so beautiful”. The encounter even elicited a playful reference to “Jaws” from one commenter, who quipped that the pair are “gonna need a bigger boat.” Another follower, taking the conversation in a decidedly less sublime direction than many, describe how the pair’s great white encounter was inevitably “followed by a great brown encounter.”
Once again, however, it was Loughlin himself who really summed up the power of the experience:
“To be this close to a great white is difficult to put into words. The excitement in our voices gives you some idea of how mind-blowing it was.”Lewis Loughlin
The story of these two men should serve as a lesson to thrillseekers everywhere: if it’s adrenaline that you’re chasing, you can’t just dip your toes in adventure, you have to throw yourself headlong into its jaws… metaphorically speaking, of course.