Associate Editor

This is freaky. In the video above, surfer Ignacio Salazar is seen paddling for a wave at Ocean Beach in San Francisco when out of nowhere a fin pops up out of the water next to him. Given the video is the sole visual evidence we have, we cannot confirm or deny that it was a shark, nor is there much indication of the animal’s size. Ignacio told us that a few locals later told him it was definitely a shark. Still, even if it were, say, a dolphin, this little encounter would be enough to get your heart going. That’s for sure.


We reached out to Ignacio for comment and here’s what he had to say:

“Ocean Beach was firing two nights ago. 10 – 15 ft faces and a nice offshore wind….. the crowd was dispersed all over OB. I spotted a really nice peak with no one on it and was the furthest out. There were some bombs. By the time I paddled out there and got to the peak the tide was coming up, and big sets were coming from the horizon, so I positioned myself really far out the back to get the bomb!! When I was paddling towards the wave, I turned on my GoPro, and such was my concentration in getting that set that the first second I saw the fin I sort of tried to race it so I could get the second wave of the set.  Then I stopped and thought about what just happened, and I just thought to myself… OK, it’s real. You just saw a fin like 4 inches next to you. What the F**K should you do?? Okay, if I panic I’m gonna lose self-control, the set and it could go all wrong, if I yell for help no one is going to hear me cause I’m really far out in the ocean and by myself, so no point in yelling or panicking. I kept looking around to see if it was coming again, so, I just decided to surrender to whatever was going to happen to me and hope for the best (all these thoughts where in a matter of seconds). So then I paddled to the next peak where there was a lot of people. And that positive thinking and calm got me through this heavy experience and got me more interested in shark behavior.”


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