Stare into the eye of a circling Great White…
If you thought The Right was the most terrifying thing you could ever see in Western Australia’s far south-west, you might want to reassess.
Diver and filmer Ash Gibb was shooting at Lucky Bay, sixty clicks east of Esperance, when he got a little tap on the back by a twelve-foot White. Not exactly a rarity in the Southern Ocean but big enough to light up the heartbeat.
From ABC News:
“I dove down. I was in about five metres of water getting a great shot of this fish and I felt this massive thump from behind,” he said.
“Very quickly I saw the great white shoot into the picture.”
In the video, posted on Mr Gibb’s YouTube channel, the shark eyes off Mr Gibb, circling him a number of times, twice retreating, only to suddenly turn and head back towards him.
All that separated Mr Gibb and the shark was the handle of his camera. Mr Gibb said his memory of the encounter was blurred by adrenalin, but he remembered feeling detached from the moment in disbelief.
“At first I was quite excited. I thought, great, this is what I came for,” he said.
He estimated the shark was 4-5 metres, and said a shark expert had told him the shark would have been a similar weight to a sport utility vehicle.
“I reminded myself of my belief about sharks, which is the fact that they don’t eat humans on purpose. We’re not their food. I think that’s sort of what got me through a lot of nerves, because it was very intense. Even though I wanted to go and do that, it was a very testing situation.”
Mr Gibb was born and raised around the ocean, and his respect for the marine world is something he hopes to share in his latest documentary.
“I went there to show people that they [sharks] are beautiful creatures, so there was no chance of me fleeing that situation,” he said. “I was there to film. I got the opportunity. The chances of that actually happening are one in a million, so I took that opportunity and did my best to keep my hand steady, and capture it on film.”
Mr Gibb said he had booked in to do his open water diving ticket, and hoped to be back in the water and spending more time capturing vision of great white sharks.
“I want to continue on filming. I’d love to see another Great White. The bigger the better,” he said.