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08/30/2009 Cory Hedgepeth (California) No Injury

Posted: Sat Sep 19, 2009 12:30 am
by sharkbait
Huntington State Beach β€” On August 30, 2009 Cory Hedgepeth was surfing at Huntington Beach, just North of the pier, roughly 300 yards, near the grassy hill. He was not as far as Dog Beach. It was 6:30 PM and he had been on the water 30 minutes. The sky was clear with an estimated air temperature of 82 degrees Fahrenheit. The sea conditions were poor for surfing. Water temperature was warm, 70 degrees Fahrenheit with poor visibility. No marine mammals or fish were observed in the area. Hedgepeth recalled; β€œIt was a pretty high tide. Most of the surf was mushy and rather easy to duck dive, but I was surfing near the shore (due to high tide). There were swimmers around, probably 9 or 10. There were roughly 12 surfers sporadic on this one break that sits almost dead straight out from the first set of steps on the grassy hill. I duck dived under a 4 foot wave. While I was under water, everything was gentle until I felt a pretty sudden jolt on the back of my board. It came from directly underneath and was enough to cause me to go almost vertical, feet up. It also caused the board to slip down my body. In ten years of surfing, I have never felt anything close to that. When I popped up out of the surf, I quickly inspected the board. I didn't see any fin damage. I really thought it had to be some type of strong fish, and considered a shark, but dismissed it due to the rare odds. Within less than a minute, I paddled into the same spot, came down the wave, turned around, and saw a shark swimming into the wave exactly where I was hit. It swam across the wave. It was dark blue with a triangular dorsal fin and roughly 4 feet in length. It then turned on its side, exposing its white belly to me. I had no choice but dive into the wave with it, as the surf was breaking; however, it left me alone. It had a traditional shark body. It got extremely close to me, within only a few feet. It was sort of thrashing in the wave. Because the sun was on its way to setting in Huntington Beach, the waves were lit up pretty well, making it easy to see everything. This is the first time I have ever seen a shark in California waters.” Please report any shark sighting, encounter, or attack to the Shark Research Committee ... k_news.htm