I am checking out rumor of local GWS sighting

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Jim Wallace, Feb 12, 2013.

  1. Cool shot of the yak angler and salmon shark. I read that there have been a couple of "minor" attacks on humans by those things.
    I think those guys are putting too much faith in what they've read about salmon sharks not attacking people. It could just be a case of not enough opportunity for contact, until recently.

    We get some nasty looking sharks out here on the coast that are mainly bottom feeders and scavengers. They don't hardly ever come up to the top, so no one ever see's 'em. The Broad Nosed Seven Gill can grow up to 9' or 10' and is powerfully built.
  2. I grew up surfing - graduated from boogie board at age7 and have been surfing for the last 30+ years. I've surfed waves odd 5 of seven continents and lived in Hawaii, etc. In short - quite a but of time in water. I also started tank-diving at 13 and have freed dived/spear fished since high school. Though I have seen a fair number of sharks (inc GWS from a nice safe distance, tigers, etc) I have thankfully yet to have a really "bad" encounter.

    Some years back I did hit a good size shark with my dive light while night diving for lobster. To this day I'm still not sure what it was....

    I have a healthy respect/fear for sharks, but I haven't let it bother me too much. I usually play it safe and don't surf with a ham hock strapped to my waist :)

  3. It's Illegal :) Ever been on a squid boat off channel islands? :) You get my drift
  4. right on, Daryle! There's no salmon left off the Marin coast thanks to this stupid park anyway. It was a major contributor to the demise of any type of commercial enterprise around that area, and before we dumped our house in Bolinas, most of the East county'd become a bedroom community for S. F.
  5. OK, I'll add to this very interesting thread. When I lived in Olympia -- 14 years -- I surfed the Westport Jetty a lot, just about whenever there was a clean longboard swell. About four years ago, I was getting ready to paddle out along the rip next to the jetty when I spotted a small shark -- about 30 inches long -- beaching itself on the sand near the jetty. It looked like a miniature GWS. I waded over for a closer look and saw it was a small Salmon shark, which look a LOT like a Great White Shark. I felt sorry for the shark, so I used the tip of my longboard to steer it back out to sea. Then I went surfing -- and shaker coho were all over the lineup. Anyway, I called a WDFW marine biologist the next day, and she said lots of juvenile salmon sharks end up beaching themselves for some reason.
    I've surfed and fly fished the Northwest since 1984, and I've never seen a Great White. I went surfing near Cannon Beach last week and spent a lot of time on the drive over thinking about sharks. I respect these animals, and I always get out of the water when I see seals or sea lions near the lineup. I know there are GWS off Northwest beaches, but I try to stay out of the water during the low light of dawn and dusk, and I don't paddle out when I see seals or sea lions. I also don't paddle out when I see a commerical boat at anchor, which happens a lot in some spots, such as Short Sands in Oregon.
  6. I know the guy who claims to have hooked the shark in Tacoma, biggest liar I've ever met.
    A great white was seen by a research boat doing bird surveys about 3 years ago at Neah Bay taking a seal.
  7. I'm sure that there's a few swimming around off our coast, but so far I have only heard very few anecdotal accounts of sightings. I haven't seen any pics of GWS caught in WA waters other than the one I posted of the shark that was caught in 1969 near the mouth of Grays Harbor.

    Usually, I'm not worried about 'em, except when I have a bleeding fish in my yak when I'm out near the tip of the Jetty, and the blood is running out of the scuppers. That's why I usually throw any rockfish directly into a 5 gal bucket or my cooler, if I have it along. Once I have a Ling bleeding in the back well of my yak and I'm leaving a blood trail, then I hope to get my second keeper Ling really quickly, and paddle them in to the beach and put 'em on ice in my big cooler.
    After that, I can go back out and fish for Black Rockfish (toss 'em in the bucket and let 'em bleed out there), without worrying about a blood trail chumming up anything.

    However, we hear about people getting maimed of killed by drunk drivers nearly every day. Now that makes driving at night really scary!
  8. They've tracked Great Whites from Baja all the way to Hawaii and even up to frigid Alaska, so their temperature range is pretty wide. I think those hungry suckers go wherever they have a good food source, lol. While maybe not in numbers, we definitely have GW's living in our waters. I haven't seen big sharks but I've seen plenty of dolphins and the occasional whale get lost in the South Sound before. When I was 16 I saw what looked like a gray whale all the way in Hammersley Inlet, which is funny because you can barely navigate a 16' skiff in Hammersley.
  9. Its a different story south of the Columbia River. I have heard many accounts of GWS sightings off the Oregon coast. They have more rocky headlands and points that drop right off into deep water, and a healthy sea lion population, making their entire coastline an ideal hunting ground for GWS. That's probably the reason why i've heard of at least one sighting or encounter nearly every year, and in recent years, multiple encounters or sightings, off the coasts of CA and OR.
  10. Shark cage excursions are on my sh*tlist, since it is now being theorized that they may be training GWS to think of divers in wetsuits as food items.
    Here's the scenario: The tour operators chum the GWS in near the tour boat, and the divers go down in a steel cage, and then what is it that the hungry and now excited GWS sees? A human form in a wetsuit! Now that is imprinted in the reptilian brain of the GWS and now it thinks we are food. So it may not just be a case of "mistaken identity" any more.
    (Just offered that as "food for thought."):D
    Porter likes this.

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