Whites going wild in California… 

Six days ago, Sacramento man Tomas Butterfield died a lonely death while surfing a joint called The Pit, a beachbreak a mile or so north of Morro Rock.

No one saw the attack, no one heard any screams; surfers found the forty-two-year-old’s body and board. Sheriffs had to go through the parking lot to figure out who was killed “based on cars still parked” while paramedics put his body on ice.

The joint was closed for 24 hours as per protocol.

But, now, surfers have started to return to Morro Bay, although numbers are down and virtually no one is venturing down to The Pit.

“Yesterday, nobody was in the water,” Perry Shoemake told the San Luis Obispo Tribune on December 28. “I’ve been surfing for 55 years. I know (a shark attack) is always a risk. But it’s something I don’t think about much. If it happens, it happens.”

Xavier Gonzales told the Trib’s reporter as he readied to paddle out, “Sometimes when I’m out there with just one or two other people or even by myself, you get a certain feeling that something’s a little off, and those are the days you never want to come across… The chances of getting attacked are pretty low, but that’s what you sign up for when you surf. I feel sorry for that family and that they lost somebody they love. I pray for that family.”

Kevin Grochau of North Morro Bay wasn’t going near the joint, howevs. He watched from the beach.

“I see as many as 25 or 30 people out in the water here sometimes,” he said. “There are some good waves today. But most of the morning, there have been anywhere from three to five people surfing.”

Gonzales, meanwhile, did admit to getting het up by nerves.

“I’m pretty nervous, for sure. But after I paddle out and catch my first wave, I’m sure I’ll be stoked. It’s always nice to go out with somebody versus alone.”

A few hundred miles north at Salmon Creek Beach, where Eric Steinley was hit by a Great White in October, surfers reported an aggressive twelve-foot Great White on December 22.

“Holy crap, we were terrified because it was not backing off,” said Timothy Reck, who was chased, along with another surfer, into shallow water by the White. 

Thirty minutes later, another surfer, Nate Buck, said he saw a Great White, also around twelve feet, six feet from him,

“It felt like I could’ve leaned over and almost touched it,” Buck said, adding two sightings in one day was pretty “significant.”

Cue expert referencing death by killer bee more likely etc.



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