VIDEO: Alligator slams into kayak, tips man into river

Posted at 10:11 AM, Jul 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-16 10:17:53-04

LAKE WACCAMAW, N.C. — A man kayaking in North Carolina experienced a scary encounter with an alligator on Sunday.

Peter Joyce was kayaking in Lake Waccamaw when an alligator slammed into his kayak.

"I thought I heard a fish jump to my left. Turned out not to be a fish," Joyce said. "About three feet from the kayak I made out the head of the gator and that was it. I had no time to react."

Video shows the gator forcefully hit the kayak and topple it over, which sent Joyce into the water.

"My mind was playing catch-up at that point. Basically, when I made out the head towards the front end of the kayak it was kind of just a state of shock. As soon as it hit the kayak and went under, I was like what just happened."

Joyce said he was able to grab onto a tree to get himself back upright.

"If it hit and there was nothing to grab on the right side of me I would have inverted, and it could've been a lot worse."

Joyce said he's seen alligators during paddling trips before, but this is the first time one charged at him.

"You know, usually they would make a splash or they would move and make a ruckus in the water. But this was a continuous charge from about 20 feet away. So it definitely made me think a little bit differently about what their capabilities are."