YACHATS, Ore. — A photographer from McMinnville captured a risky situation Sunday, as he watched another man take photos along the Oregon Coast.
Gibson discovered the spot in 2007 and named it Thor’s Well because he thought it looked mythological.
"I named it Thor's Well and it caught on and now it's become a fairly popular place on the Oregon coast for photographers,” Gibson explained. “Unfortunately, it also remains a hazardous place, and so people need to be really really careful when they go out there to take pictures."
While Gibson was there Sunday, he said another man came up to him asking if he thought it would be safe to take photos out on the rocks. Gibson told the man no, but said he ignored the advice.
“I was really rather surprised and distressed when this fellow took that risk,” Gibson said.
All Gibson could do was watch and hope the man did not get swept out to sea as a giant wave came crashing down on him.
“It was really hazardous and I was quite worried for him because if the wave would've been a little bit larger, it could've easily knocked him down and once you're down, you can get swept right out off the rock and into the ocean,” Gibson said.
The man was soaking wet, but thankfully made it out unharmed.
"It can change dramatically in just seconds because all it takes is one very large wave, the notorious Oregon sneaker wave, and you can be in big, big trouble,” Gibson said. “He got lucky and I'm very glad for that."
Gibson hopes this story will make others think twice because a good picture is not worth your life.
The Cape Perpetua Visitor Center near Thor’s Well said it has had problems with people taking risks to get photos.
The person we spoke with at the visitor center said it happens all the time despite warning signs in the area. Most people walk away with minor injuries, but in December 2017 one person died because they went out at night when it was not safe.