REAL LIFE

Backpacker body slams a croc to get the ultimate Aussie selfie

Snap a croc and he'll snap you right on back

Johnny Bonde, 27, Alice Springs, NT

A gleam in the water stopped me dead in my tracks.  My girlfriend, Kirsty, 25, and I were walking home from a day out.


It was pitch black, but I was staring right into the eyes of a massive freshwater crocodile!

I was staring right into the eyes of a massive freshwater crocodile!
Whoa! (Credit: Getty Images)

On the bank of Lake Kununurra in Western Australia’s far north, I couldn’t believe my eyes. After more than a year backpacking around Australia, this was my first crocodile sighting.  I’d heard about a  resident freshy who roamed this area.

‘I need to get closer!’ I told Kirsty.

A selfie with a croc! I thought.

Imagine what my mates back home in Denmark will say!

Straight up, Kirsty thought it was a bad idea.


‘I’m heading back to camp. Be careful,’ she warned.

I’ll be fine, I thought, sizing up the creature.

He must’ve been 2.5 metres long. But he looked very relaxed. Inching down the embankment though, my foot slipped. All of a sudden, I was on top of the beast!

Instantly, the croc seized my arm and was shaking me furiously.  Understandably, the croc was very angry.

I would be too – I’d body slammed him!

In shock, all I felt was an intense burning sensation. After a scary few seconds, he let me go. 

Scrambling towards the edge, I noticed several deep punctures in my arm. My first thought was Kirsty – she was going to be so angry at me!


Back at the caravan park, I inspected my wounds in the toilet. It was clear I needed to go to hospital.

Checking out my injuries in the bathroom.
I had to snap a selfie!

Waking Kirsty, I warned her to stay calm.


‘Don’t panic, babe…’ I began.


Right away, she called an ambulance, and at the hospital I was patched up.


Looking back, I can’t believe how stupid I was. I don’t blame the crocodile one bit. It was all my fault.


I wanted the ultimate Aussie selfie. But I learned my lesson. Try to snap a croc, and they’ll snap you right back!

 Originally published in that’s life! Issue 50, 2016. 

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