There are very few things I would describe as “winning the lottery,” winning the lottery being among them. Having someone give me a Porsche would qualify, too. (911s only, though — getting a Boxter or Cayman would be a bit more like winning a raffle.)
Getting pulled around San Francisco Bay for two hours by a great white shark? Not really “winning the lottery” territory. In fact, that sounds like the setup to some kind of “Jaws” homage/ripoff. As life-changing experiences go, that seems to fall more under the “harrowing” category than it would the “lottery-winning” one.
Props, then, are due to Captain Joey Gamez and the fishermen he led out on an expedition this weekend in the Bay Area. They ended up catching the monster shark — and created a monster viral video in the process, which is always a plus.
According to Fox News, Gamez is the owner and operator of Golden State Sportfishing, a Berkeley, California-based company which says it “specializes in sportfishing adventures in the California Delta, San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean waters outside the Golden Gate Bridge” on its website.
On Saturday, Gamez took a group out in the San Francisco Bay to fish for seven-gill sharks and soupfin. Catching any sort of shark can be hairy stuff — and, indeed, they thought they had a seven-gill when they hooked the giant great white that dragged them around the bay.
“The seven-gill sharks that we catch bite just like this one did, so we thought we had a monster seven-gill shark,” Gamez said.
“It dragged [the boat] around, actually for two miles exactly,” he added. “It pulled us with the current for two miles, then we hovered over it for 20 minutes or so.”
“I just gave it all I had, just tried to bring her to the surface.”
Except it wasn’t a seven-gill shark — or anything else he’d experienced during his 20 years of fishing.
Footage posted to Facebook revealed just what they were dealing with.
Warning: The video below contains strong language that some readers may find offensive.
“It was almost like hooking onto a Volkswagen that was a hundred feet deep,” he told KPIX-TV.
Yes. A Volkswagen that most people probably wouldn’t want to come face-to-face with. However, to a seasoned pro like Gamez, it was a landmark moment.
“I was not prepared to see that,” he said. “I was in awe, super surprised — it was like winning the lottery.”
He estimated the shark at between 6.5 to 8 feet.
“We’ve caught some big ones, but that had to be my biggest,” he said.
And great whites aren’t necessarily something that he sees that often.
“I’ve personally never heard of one being caught by a fisherman,” he said. “There’s usually 50+ guys on the water, and no one has heard of that happening.”
California regulations stipulate that the shark had to be let go — and, quite frankly, who wants to try and wrangle a potentially violent Volkswagen onto a boat?
Still, Gamez and the other fishermen will always have a killer viral video to remember the moment by.
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