Skip to comments.Large Shark Gives Maui Kayaker A Scare
Posted on 02/04/2006 4:50:44 AM PST by Tyche
Snorkeling Boat Captain Helps Scare Shark Away From Kayakers
MAKENA, Maui, Hawaii -- A visitor from Minnesota had a frightening encounter with a shark on Maui on Wednesday.
The shark encounter happened between the Molokini Crater and Makena off the Maui coast in the morning. Dan Lankheit, 57, was kayaking with a friend when he said a huge shark nudged his kayak and wouldn't stop following him.
Lankheit and his friend, Bob, were kayaking halfway between Molokini Crater and Makena when the shark appeared.
"I felt something and looked down and this shark brushed my kayak," Lankheit said.
Lankheit said he turned around to check on Bob, who was trailing him by about 150 feet.
"I yelled to Bob, 'Great white,'" Lankheit said. "All I saw was the side of it, as he brushed up against me I saw his eye look at me. Then he just disappeared."
Lankheit kept paddling, hoping the 15- to 18-foot shark would tire and stop following him.
"I saw the dorsal fin following me and I thought, 'This is not a good thing,'" Lankheit said.
The shark pursued him for about 15 minutes. That's when a boat full of snorkelers from the Maui Dive Shop approached the kayakers.
"I started waving at 'em, 'Please come here,'" Lankheit said.
"When he waved us over, I could see there was a pretty large animal behind him," said Capt. Rae Eckert Stewart, of Maui Dive Shop. "He was just, you know, swimming along, looking at the kayak."
Stewart said the shark had a quite a large head and was swimming close to the surface.
"It didn't swim away right away, until I got close to it and then it didn't veer away from the kayaker. And then, I just gunned the engine a little bit to make some noise and it took off right away," Stewart said.
When the shark swam off, Stewart stopped her 36-foot boat and took the two men and their kayaks to shore.
Lankheit was a bit shaken, but Stewart said he was in good shape.
"He did a good thing. He stayed very calm. He was just paddling slowly," Stewart said.
The state land department has not determined what kind of shark it was, but it is investigating the encounter. The state also notified hotels and resorts on that stretch of beach.
Ain't that the truth!
My wife teases me big time. She'll get in the water and put her hand up on her forehead like a shark dorsal fin, and paddle toward me, even in a pool, and then she'll near drown while she laughs hysterically, which of course is contagious. My kids are now in on it.
Still, the whole prehistoric animal thing sorta wierds me out.
The behavior and size is consistent with a large Tiger shark.
A White shark would not have spent that much time on the surface in the absence of bait or chum.
Tiger and Bull/Zambezi sharks are notoriously curious and subsequently more often dangerous to humans.
I know they're all over the waters in Florida, particularly the Gulf side.
Handguns not allowed without special permit in the Peoples' Socialist Democracy of Hawaii
"A love sick shark.......?"
-----I like your interpretation. There's probably some truth to that.
Jeeze Louise. Honestly, I haven't been back in the water since Jaws. About 5 years ago, my husband and kids finally persuaded me to ride out with them into the surf on a float they were pulling around. I apprehensively consented. In a few minutes, they lost interest in me and left me floating out there - ALONE. I looked out toward the horizon and saw a huge black mass headed my way. I was hysterical. The mass came straight to my float, parted, and the school of fish swam away. Nope, never again.
AGH! The husband and I are going to Maui in May! I don't think I'll be kayaking...or snorkling. :-(
Bruce just out for a nibble.
Yup... A Tiger nibbled a few fingers off of a tourist in the same area last December.
Right..... like THAT'S ever gonna happen.... a kayaker out-paddling a swimming great white? Get real.
Thank you! I am literally counting down the days until we leave! (108 left!!)
Not that I'm aware, just an example of another "nosy" shark. Oceanic whitetips are also investigatory, but prefer open ocean.
I think Bull sharks are found primarily in the Indian and Atlantic oceans, certainly GofM and Carribean.
How perfectly horrifying that must have been.
We really don't belong in the water, do we?
They're allowed if you don't get caught.