A surfer from Oregon claims that a surfing trip went awry when he ended up surfing on the back of a Great white shark.
Doug Niblack was surfing with friends when he started to paddle out to some bigger waves. He hit something and flew through the air before landing on what he assumed was a rock. It was only when he looked down and saw a fin that he realised that he was actually riding on a 10-12' shark.
"When I saw the fin come out of the water – the tail is probably the scariest thing - I felt it moving underneath me and remember feeling that it’s no way out," Niblack said. "That’s the moment where I was making good with God."
Niblack claims he only surfed on the shark's back for about three seconds before he fell off. As he was still attached by his board’s ankle strap, he was then pulled along for a few feet before he managed to get loose.
An off-duty Coast Guard officer and fellow surfer saw him thrashing in the water and started to paddle out to him but he told them to get out of the water as quickly as possible as he thought he was about to be attacked. However he managed to get back on to his board and paddled (extremely fast!) back to the shore.
Whilst some may be sceptics, the coast guard Jake Marks said to USA today: "I have no reason to doubt there was a shark out there. With the damage to his board, the way he was yelling and trembling afterwards - there is no other explanation for that."
Ralph Collier, president of the Shark Research Committee and director of the Global Shark Attack File said that an event like this is unexpected but not unprecedented.
"I’m surprised that we don’t have more events than we have," Collier said. He recalled a similar case off Catalina Island in California where a kayaker was airlifted out of her kayak and onto the back of a Great white. He said that encounters are just the by-product of going into the ocean, especially at times where there’s low visibility.
Collier added: "It’s their environment, it’s their home. We’re visitors."
For a silly reconstruction see the video:
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