Posted by Elaine on February 18, 2003 at 13:51:36:
I had the good fortune to dive this weekend. I swam toward shore and dropped in at about 40 feet. Sure enough, that famous shark with noting to do but sit in the water and wait for divers was there for me. He swam right by (probably 5 feet or less) and checked me out. Needless to say, I checked him out quite closely to be certain he wasn't Mr. Whitie - he was a 5-6 foot blue. He paused just long enough to make sure I would feel pain over a missed photo op and then took off.
In 10 years of diving out at Catalina, and, at least 500 hours in the water there, this was my first casual shark encounter. It turned what would have been an average dive day into a world class dive experience. It is a shame that it hasn't happened before and I'm guessing I won't get lucky again for another 10 years. My overall feeling about the encounter is that if things were right with our local ecosystem more divers would get this terrific experience withough having to do the "shark dive" thing. I felt like I was given a glimpse of the way things could be if the MLPA's were up and effectively functioning. I think sometimes when the fighting centers on the small stuff it is possible to forget just how wonderful the bigger picture could be.
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