The Exploding Whale - 2006-2019 (2023)

  • I was 5 and lived in Florence. My family went to watch (nothing else to do in Florence then). To this day I remember it vividly. The stench was awful. Being we were already covered in goo, my siblings and I played and jumped on the blubber pieces.
    To this day I can’t eat seafood and get nauseous when I smell that strong seafood smell.
    -
    Carrie
    November 13th, 2019 at 9:00 am

  • I don’t remember when the Exploding Whale first came to my attention, but it didn’t take long for me to have the deep conviction that Exploding Whale Day needs to be a real fake holiday, at least as well-known as Talk Like a Pirate Day. To that end I organize a yearly celebration and have written a small bit of poetry:
    https://soundcloud.com/nicholas-haggin/george-thorntons-pilgrimage
    - Nicholas
    November 4th, 2019 at 9:03 am

  • I remember this from when it happened. My dad was working in nearby Waldport. I visited him from California just after this. I always wondered what the smashed car owner told his insurance company. Thanks for having the follow-up article.
    -
    William Turner
    January 18th, 2018 at 8:55 pm

  • Now we know it’s better to bulldoze them into a pit. That rotting carcass reeked. The stench would cause people to retch from as far away as the parking lot. Exploding it seemed like a good idea at the time.
    -
    Rene
    November 12th, 2015 at 8:14 pm

  • So exploding dead whales doesn’t seem to be an appropriate solution to a whale carcase washing ashore. Anyone any idea of how you CAN appropriately get rid of a whale carcase? This means, what can be done that is safe, environmentally conscious and reduces smell and blubber hinder for people living nearby? Just for the sake of science. And you know, for in case I find a whale carcase in my backyard…
    I think you could dedicate a new section of your website to this topic!
    -
    FaDR
    April 4th, 2015 at 8:49 am

  • who first found the whale?
    -
    dave wampler
    March 30th, 2014 at 11:00 am

  • This was not the first time dynamite was used to dispose of whale carcases. In about 1950 one whale was blown to pieces on Long Beach on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. The technique had been used to get rid of sea lion remains previously after burning them proved a very long and smelly process near beach houses. Only one whale was blown up as the mess landed in the dunes and turned into small very hard pieces like rubber. Seagull dealt with most but not all pieces. This is a genuine story as I saw the results.
    -
    richard cox
    November 2nd, 2013 at 7:02 pm

  • The man responsible has died.
    http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/10/31/21263188-man-behind-oregons-infamous-exploding-whale-dies?lite
    - Mark
    October 31st, 2013 at 11:36 am

  • On Cape Cod when I was a kid some fishermen would tie a rope around the whale’s tail and haul it back out to sea. So here’s a good idea for you if it evree happens again.
    Faith Gagne
    -
    Faith Gagne
    September 23rd, 2011 at 2:15 pm

  • No, guys. This isn’t awesome. This made me cry. It was alive once, and just because its dead doesn’t mean we have to blow it up. And the people just laughed and cheered. C’mon people, I don’t see why we can’t have any compassion for creatures other than ourselves. Humans truly are terrible people.
    -
    Melanie
    August 13th, 2011 at 11:39 pm

  • Does anyone know of a version of the video with Spanish subtitles?
    -
    Amy
    May 19th, 2011 at 1:07 pm

  • I found this site to be educational and interesting. A whale dies so we blow it up and people think it is funny. How sad.
    -
    Colleen Banks
    April 17th, 2010 at 7:15 pm

  • I was the UPI Bureau chief in Salem, Or, when the whale washed up. I covered it for the service. I drove down to Florence with my wife and two of my young children. We vividly recall the falling blubber after the blast. We could hear big pieces landing all around us as we crouched alongside a car in the parking lot where we had been restricted to by the highway department. We could hear the pieces crashing onto cars. Chunks of blubber were flying over us like artillery shells. We were all covered in fallout from the disintegrating blubber, and we stunk like you wouldn’t believe. It took several hours to get home, but we had to leave all the car windows open to lessen the stink. It was a very long drive, it seemed, before we got home where we could shed our smelly clothes and wash the residue off our bodies. I took the picture of the explosion which UPI distributed all over the world.
    -
    Clarence Zaitz
    September 7th, 2009 at 3:19 pm

  • So, we are at Cape Perpetua today (8-15-09) and we met a stranger to these parts. We mentioned the exploding whale story and told him to you-tube it. I decided when I go home it was time to watch it again myself. It still totally cracks me up. The whale was already dead so this is no worse than cremation or what ever else we do with corpses. We also learned our lesson..TNT and Whales..not a great idea!
    -
    Holly Patterson
    August 15th, 2009 at 4:40 pm

  • Nearly every single comment on this page is disgustingly callous. There is nothing funny about this site at all. How can it be funny?!?! If I went to the zoo and dynamited a lion or polar bear or donkey or anything else, that would not be funny. So what makes this funny???? Maybe most of you are laughing at the video, but why have these people decided to continue to document exploding whales around the world – many of them alive when it happens? Would it be funny if I blew you up, because you were stuck in a swamp or a bit of quicksand, and you were ‘suffering’? Well, I thought not, but now I think a lot of you would deserve it. I hope you all die an explosively painful death, and someone is there to laugh at you when it happens.
    -
    Nicky
    June 23rd, 2009 at 7:03 am

  • You know this was actually really funny. But no one can take this seriously like you guys do. especialy the link name. XD
    -
    Zach D
    December 2nd, 2008 at 3:24 am

  • One of the funniest and stupidest things I have ever seen or heard of. I say chap, let’s blow the whale up, capital idea, capital idea!
    -
    Wendy
    October 18th, 2008 at 10:24 am

  • This site is great
    -
    Emma Jenny Taylor
    October 1st, 2008 at 10:07 am

  • This is one of the funniest things ever! Not only was a whale blown up but now there is a dedicated website!!! 😀
    The only thing that was sad about this (after the whale had died) that people started suing each other.
    Top 5 funnies!!

    btw Bogo, your country is probably responsible for funding a lot of bomb throwing so don’t be so quick to throw stones.
    -
    nathan from New Zealand
    July 10th, 2008 at 5:35 pm

  • I was there. Not for the explosion, but the day before just to see it. I wanted to go to the explosion, but my parent said no. In hindsight…
    -
    Rob Miller
    June 11th, 2008 at 4:32 pm

  • My friend’s great uncle is George Thornton, we always laugh about this when he comes around.
    -
    Connor
    June 10th, 2008 at 7:58 pm

  • The Whale is heroic
    That is truly awesome. If there had to be a hero in the whole saga it would have to be the whale for reigning down destruction on all the stupid people who thought that was a good idea.
    -
    AJ Crawshaw
    February 3rd, 2008 at 2:27 pm

  • I don’t think it’s all that funny but when some guy has no idea on how to place explosives and they hand him 20 boxes of the stuff, someone need to reaccess whos in charge.
    -
    Pat Thompson
    February 2nd, 2008 at 5:07 pm

  • Well, I’ve heard of it raining cats and dogs but this goes far, far, oh so far beyond anything that I have ever seen. This is what happens when amateurs are given the job of disposal. The National Guard or other pros would have been far more qualified.
    Enough explosive was used, as shown by the car that was destroyed by a large chunk of whale???, just not directed in the proper manner.
    Unique though, very unique.
    -
    Paul
    November 19th, 2007 at 12:19 am

  • I was 13 years old when the whale blown up and yes I was there. The worst part was right after the blast. Notice that green and red mist right after the blast? The stench was so bad, people retched for hours after.
    -
    Thomas Benefield
    June 14th, 2007 at 6:34 am

  • It’s funny that I had never heard of the exploding whale before. I just moved up here to Yachats Or. in January 07. About a week ago I was googling movie times for Florence and I came across the exploding whale movie. Then, a couple of days later at a party, the subject came up and your website was mentioned. Then, when the whale washed up it here in Seal Rock, it was mentioned to me again by a friend in California, that there was a video that shows an exploding whale. So anyways, it just seems strange to me that I had never heard of this incident until about a week ago, and then it was brought my attention twice within several days of each other by totally different people.
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    N. W.
    June 6th, 2007 at 2:52 pm

  • In response to Gaylene’s question, it was Pacific Indemnity Group, which was the insurance carrier for Oregon’s State Highway Division at the time this happened. You can read more about it in
    this articleon our website.
    -
    Administrator
    May 28th, 2007 at 11:39 am

  • I was just wondering whose insurance paid for that guys’ car???!!
    -
    Gaylene
    May 28th, 2007 at 9:43 am

  • I came across your website on a link from john’s nautical page.I grew up on Long Beach Island in southern New Jersey. I vividly recall the same thing happening there some 45 years ago.I was about 5 years of age and the whale seemed huge to me. I remember jumping and running atop it.The remains of the whale landed across a large area.You could smell it for months.I know the local paper, the Beach Haven Times, has photos of the explosion in their files.Its hard to believe this has happened so many times elsewhere.I had always thought it to be a unique childhood incident.
    -
    John Creevy
    May 26th, 2007 at 9:39 pm

  • I had never even heard of this story until it was the story my torts prof used on our final today. The first question and 35% of the test was this story followed the 3 hypothetical victims and who they could sue for this. It was such an crazy story listed as true that I had to research. Now my classmates are sending out videos all over the place. Awesome! I got to write a 7 page essay about Jeremy trapped under whale blubber and Elizabeth running screaming from the blubber.
    -
    D
    May 7th, 2007 at 5:37 pm

  • I saw this video this weekend at the Hatfieild Marine Science Center in Newport, OR, and just had to watch it again (and maybe a few more times). It is hilarious! I can’t imagine why they even thought this would work out. I’ll be sharing this with my friends.
    -
    Kim
    April 11th, 2007 at 1:31 pm

  • When you play trivial pursuits, the only questions about Oregon are Tonya Harding, and this exploding whale.
    -
    PDXjer
    April 11th, 2007 at 12:13 pm

  • AWESOME!!
    -
    Art8mus
    March 22nd, 2007 at 3:13 pm

  • If in doubt blow it up! What a laugh! I can only imagine the smell!!!
    -
    Suezq
    March 3rd, 2007 at 7:07 pm

  • I want to thank you for allowing us to view these video clips. In class I covered a unit on explosives and the dangers and here you have this video clip. These are not only for entertainment, but they are very useful for instruction. Thank you again!
    -
    Dennylliam Reyes
    February 26th, 2007 at 5:31 am

  • GREAT story, what a laugh! Or not … ?
    “Gotta love Americans, if theres a problem, just blow it up!” as AJ wrote on this list in Nov 06. And even when it didnt work, the government unbelievably states: “It went just exactly right!” (whale-bombing expert assistant destrict highway engineer George Thornton as quoted in the Eugene Register-Guard …).
    As long as you US-rednecks throw bombs at dead whales only and just ruin your own cars we all just laugh. But this american way of solving problems has turned into a threat of people in many parts of the world.
    When did that story happen? In 1970? Didn’t you over there had time to learn from it?
    Next time: please just think before throwing bombs, no matter what Fox TV might tell you. Thanks.
    Bogo from Switzerland
    -
    Bogo
    February 16th, 2007 at 12:34 pm

  • Do you plan to run the related story of the dead whale found in Taiwan in 2004 whose internal gases caused it to explode, fouling up the air?
    Editor’s note: The Taiwan incident is, in fact, already documented on
    TheExplodingWhale.comhere:
    Taiwan (1/26/2004) - Tricky Dee
    February 15th, 2007 at 8:02 pm

  • A classic!
    -
    John DeWilde
    February 14th, 2007 at 6:08 am

  • I watched the video and tears came to my eyes…blub, blub and then I realised I was a “blubber”!
    -
    Cy Cook
    February 4th, 2007 at 5:43 pm

  • I swear they did this again during the time I lived in Portland(’98-’04)with similiar results, showering news crews with rotten blubber. Can anyone help back this claim or was Paul Linnman reairing this story the year of his retirement?
    -
    P.Oneill
    January 16th, 2007 at 9:58 am

  • I grew up in Oregon, and this has been my stock “home-state” story the world over. It is big in Japan. Funny in Finland. Mucho mucho in Mexico. Thanks for devoting website to this piece of Oregon lore. Next, a website devoted to Oregonians who are not afraid to wear socks with their sandals? Even more shocking.
    -
    John Moore
    January 15th, 2007 at 8:46 pm

  • I have never laughed so hard in all my life. I wish there was a higher rez version of it, though. I gotta find that for my site.
    -
    Bizarre News
    December 25th, 2006 at 1:38 pm

  • If you blow up a dead whale hoping it will “just go away”…. you might be a redneck.
    -
    Jay
    December 22nd, 2006 at 8:27 am

  • Well I must say, i’m glad this story is getting out. it needs to be heard.
    -
    Erik Umenhofer
    December 12th, 2006 at 11:11 am

  • I once saw this video on German TV and i started laughing for about half an hour. How stupid can someone be to do something like that. When I first saw the video it was for about 3 years ago and I thought that I would have to move mountains do get it, and now thanks to the internet i finally got it. A great thank you to everyone who made it possible, but can you send me a higher quality version? I know thta somewhere it has to exist, but i can’t find it anywhere. But anyway thank you very much.
    -
    KingQowaz
    November 30th, 2006 at 10:47 am

  • One of the strangest stories I’ve every heard. Well done to the website operators for sharing this.
    -
    J M ECKERSLEY
    November 28th, 2006 at 7:17 am

  • FUNNY, thats hilarious, love the part with the crushed car. Good reporter, funny guy
    -
    nice-diver
    November 25th, 2006 at 10:41 am

  • Gotta love Americans, if theres a problem, just blow it up! It seems to work for most of their problems!.
    -
    AJ
    November 21st, 2006 at 5:12 am

  • Some things are purely Oregonian.
    A whale full of explosives, a shower of giant chunks of whale fat on curious bistanders, all narrated by a perfectly deadpan Linnman – cummulates in one event Oregon’s entire mantra. Try to be taken seriously while knee deep in what can only be seen by those outside our borders as comedy.
    Thank you, Paul, for continuing to laugh with us.
    -
    Jonno
    November 20th, 2006 at 12:40 am

  • Unusual site caught my attention just to discover a slighly deranged humour. I guess what goes around comes around like a boomerang or in some other transformed form.
    For goodness sake when are men going to respect the natural laws of the universe and act “humanly”, allow the whales to die naturally..we don’t see animals acting so ridiculously.
    -
    Nathalie and let nature act
    November 16th, 2006 at 12:22 pm

  • Great site. Absolutely hilarious. But I was disappointed by the Paul Linnman interview. I was hoping to find out how he came up with that brilliant line.
    -
    JoshfromIowa
    November 12th, 2006 at 3:07 am

  • The first time i saw this video, I was living on the S. Oregon coast. It was funny then, and as someone else noted, It was a Scream!
    That was years ago. My wife and I just happened to remember it again tonight; I went to Google “exploding whale” and, well, it’s still funny. And it’s better yet now with your website and all it’s contents. Thanks for preserving and celebrating a special piece of Oregon Coast history! This is great!
    -
    R. Gauer
    November 3rd, 2006 at 12:44 am

  • I too am sorry the whale died, but nontheless being it is dead it had to be disposed of one way or another. While watching the video I noticed no one even mentioned of pulling it back out to sea. Once they were far enough out, to where the current wouldn’t bring it back in, they could have either cut it lose or at that point, if they so desired, try the explosives as long as it didn’t hurt what life was around there. If this would have been possible or not, I don’t know, but it sure would have been better than what they did.
    -
    Dorene J. Stamper
    October 19th, 2006 at 2:49 pm

  • When I first read Dave Berry’s article about this incident, I hadn’t laughed that hard in a long time. It was a scream!
    -
    Selek
    October 16th, 2006 at 5:34 am

  • As you advised I rebooted and enjoyed the film. Thanks
    -
    BRUCE BURKHOLDER
    October 11th, 2006 at 2:12 pm

  • I enjoyed the videos after having to download Quiktime again. That was quite a story! I am curious as to why it was reported on a Southern Washington beach if it was in Florence, Oregon.
    -
    Bob Brown
    October 11th, 2006 at 9:54 am

  • I downloaded quicktime, went through troubleshoot and still no video. Any suggestions?
    -
    BRUCE BURKHOLDER
    October 10th, 2006 at 2:04 pm

  • What a shame that you did not make this video available in a format that does not require downloading Apple software that ONLY runs on Windows 2000 XP. I would have loved to watch this video, but am one of those not running that environment. Am very disappointed.
    -
    Zelda
    October 10th, 2006 at 7:52 am

  • fire that cameraman for abandoning his post.
    -
    swensi
    September 10th, 2006 at 5:42 pm

  • i didnt get 2 see it beacuause the stupid school filterd it…anywho how are u all by the wat and wat are you all doin lookin at this sick video love ya lots XxXxXxXxX
    -
    man with eye patch
    July 25th, 2006 at 4:56 am

  • Allow me to quote Homer Simpson: ” Look at that blubber fly!”
    -
    J.T.
    July 8th, 2006 at 12:55 pm

  • New dead whale on Andrew Molena state park CA.
    Have pictures, will send
    -
    Andy Stauffer
    June 24th, 2006 at 10:04 pm

  • Hi! We just had a Gray Whale Calf die in the Columbia River, i got some good photos, would you like them? If so email me a address that i can attach photos.
    thanks nate
    -
    nate sandel
    May 19th, 2006 at 5:00 pm

  • http://www.nbc10.com/news/9216231/detail.html
    This might be a candidate for the next whale to get blown up?
    -
    Dan
    May 15th, 2006 at 9:09 am

  • well we are currently viewing this page from uni and we were terribly disgusted and outraged to see somone standing on a dead whale. Does this not turn your stomach sick?? how can someone not have so much as an ounce of sorrow for such a poor and helpless animal. They are not an intrusive threat so why should we be so cruel and heartless fare enough to blow them up because there dead BUT doesn’t this come under the counts of animal cruelty?? disgusting
    signed abbey and trin
    -
    ab n trin
    May 11th, 2006 at 5:42 pm

  • There is another version of the video
    […]
    which has IMHO better voice-over. The version here has different video editing and is shorter.
    Note: “dmc” is correct — there are two versions of the video. Both may now be downloaded from our
    video page. The content of this post was edited by the site admin.
    -
    dmc
    April 20th, 2006 at 9:09 pm

  • Blew me away to
    -
    Golfguy
    March 11th, 2006 at 4:52 pm

  • this is amazing!
    -
    Alice Broadribb
    March 1st, 2006 at 6:53 am

  • I never believed Dave Barry’s statement that the videotape of this event was “the single most wonderful thing in the history of the universe.” Now that I have seen it, I am compelled to agree with Mr. Barry’s statement.
    Clearly, one of the greatest accomplishments of human history here, and I am sure it will go down as the single most important thing ever accomplished by the United States of America.
    -
    Frank Brickfield
    January 28th, 2006 at 8:50 pm

  • Welcome to the new blog-based feedback forum for TheExplodingWhale.com! We look forward to hearing from you!
    -Steve
    -
    Steve
    November 7th, 2005 at 10:22 am

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