Juvenile Shark Attempts to Tandem Surf At “Four Doors”
Shark Research Committee
San Onofre State Beach — On June 24, 2011
Doug Green was surfing ‘Four Doors’ at San Onofre State Beach. It was 1:30 PM and he had been on the water 1.5 hours. He was 300 meters from shore over a rocky bottom 10 – 15 feet deep. Air and water temperatures were estimated in the mid-60s Fahrenheit. It was overcast with a mild 10 mph breeze and choppy seas with waves about 5 feet.
Green reported the following; “While resting between waves sitting upright on my board, a shark suddenly jumped onto and across my surfboard. At first I thought it must be a dolphin, but noticed gill slits in the water and a broad dorsal fin near my face. The shark thrashed to free itself and cleared my board. The board is 23 inches wide and the front of the shark and the rear of the shark were off the board and in the water at least one foot on each side. The entire episode lasted approximately 3 – 4 seconds. I did not see the shark again. The shark was approximately 5 feet in length, dark gray/black upper and light gray/white lower. There were at least 4 surfers within 10 meters, and at least 2 facing me when it happened. One commented it looked like a juvenile Great White. I reported it to the lifeguard at the station labeled ‘Old Mans’ who listened politely but made no report to my knowledge.”
Any physical contact between a shark and a human, or a piece of equipment being used in an ocean activity by the human, constitutes an unprovoked shark attack if the subject did not make a provocative action toward the shark causing it to strike out.
Please report any shark sighting, encounter, or attack to the Shark Research Committee.