HALEIWA (KHNL) While the excitement is building to bring in the new year, excitment turned into terror for a longtime waterman who went face-to-face with the most feared creature
in the ocean right here in Hawaii.
Not only does he have an amazing story to tell of his run in with a great white shark but he's got the pictures to prove it.
Jimmy Hall knows he was lucky. He's been running a shark tour on the North Shore for about 4 years. He's seen thousands of sharks but this is the first time he's seen the great white shark, hands down the most feared creature in the ocean.
"Every time I tell the story or think about it, or close my eyes, it's right there. I don't think I've done anything where the high has lasted so long. I just cannot get over how incredibly fortunate I was to be out there when that incredible animal came by." said Hall.
Jimmy Hall of Hawaii Shark Encounters had a close encounter during a shark tour on Wednesday about 3 miles off Haleiwa.
"And I looked at that, and matter of factly, that's a small humpback whale. That's how big this thing was. When it got closer, it was no humpback whale. It was a white shark, unmistakably".
This great white is a female. Experts estimate her to be about 18 feet long and between 1.5 to 2 tons. Just to give you an idea, that boat she's rubbing up against in the video is 32 feet long.
"I went outside the cage, and just went out mid-water and she was making an approach and I just sat there and saw this incredible fish and just came swimming up, until we were about 2 feet away, nose to nose with that shark, and it swam by and just put my hand by her side and wow! That was really, that was really something!"
Hall hopes this historic sighting helps experts learn more about great whites and clear up any myths.
"If there was such a thing as a man eating shark, that's all the shark would eat. There's so many of us. We swim so pathetically slow compared to everything else in the ocean, they wouldn't do anything else but eat people.
"We were just incredibly fortunate to see this one. Cause we happen to see it, doesn't mean it's the only one that's ever been here."