A man climbed a pole in the middle of the sea to await rescue amid a storm off the Tayside coast.
Eyewitnesses watched in horror as the man battled to save himself from extreme conditions when his kayak capsized near Arbroath harbour.
A fellow kayaker made it back to shore but the stricken man was eventually rescued by the town’s lifeboat crew, about 400 yards out to sea.
Stuart Betty, 49, a travel agent manager form Arbroath, watched events unfold on Tuesday afternoon saying waves were between 10 and 20 feet high.
He said: “I was cycling past the harbour and I noticed the waves were really high. Two figures then caught my eye and I saw it was people a canoes.
“I thought they were crazy for going out in that weather.
“They were by the edge of the harbour so they must have thought they were safe there.
“They looked like they were having fun and knew what they were doing, they were riding the waves like surfers.
“But, next thing, two massive waves knocked one guy off his canoe and he was left in the middle of the harbour.
“They’ve built these new jet ski poles so he climbed up on one of them and was there a good 10 minutes before the rescue boat came.
“It all happened very quickly.
“A lot of people were there watching and were angry that they had gone into the harbour in such conditions and had put themselves and the rescue crews in danger.
“I did think they were very foolish when I first saw them.
“After the rescue dinghy came I left as I had to be somewhere, but it looked like they were OK.
“Nobody knew who they were, it was a mystery.
“The rescue team did a great job as always, they were so quick and professional.”
A spokeswoman from the coastguard said: “A call was received at around 3.30pm where a kayak had capsized north of the harbour in Arbroath.
“The teams from both Montrose and Arbroath were scrambled to the scene where a man was rescued from the water.
“The man had got into difficulty around 400 yards out and had climbed on to a pole.
“The other kayaker made it back to shore safely and both are known to be experienced.”