Friday, October 16, 2009

Great White Sharks - Julie Hazards Adventure

When the office phone rang this summer within minutes into the conversation we knew we had a shark fan on the other end of the line.

Julie Hazard turned out to be one of those shark people you come to love, and cannot wait to meet.

This is her story, encounters with the Great whites of Isla Guadalupe -2009

Julies Story

I have always loved sharks. I remember watching Jacques Cousteau and then 'Shark Week' as a child...I though shark diving was so cool and as I grew older it became an obsession.

When I was a senior in high school, I wanted to study Marine Biology and was warned by someone that it was hard to get a job...because you basically have to wait for someone to die to get a good field position. It turns out studying sharks wasn't a job you ever gave up once you had it.

So instead I became a member of a few shark conservation groups and I even have a shark tattoo on my ankle...did I mention that I love sharks?

A few years ago I decide to go dive with Great whites. I didn't know anything about the dives and wanted to get a great price for the dive so, I did some homework. Last year I found two companies that had pretty good shark diving deals and called to talk with them in person.

Unfortunately I was also in the process of changing jobs and decided to wait one more year. Let me tell you, that was one very looong year. I was laid off in November but I had saved the money for the trip and I was going to go.

I started talking with Patric the CEO of Shark Diver in Feb and I was so excited when I got the confirmation that I was going. Since I had no job at the time, it gave me something to look forward to. Imagine booking a trip with no job? Did I mention I really love sharks?

I had booked this great trip and was so excited I told everyone I knew what I was doing, twice! They all thought I was crazy!

Turns out the Shark Crew were very sweet to me as a single girl far from home, 210 miles in the middle of no where, surrounded by white sharks. They kept you very well fed, the beds were comfy, and of course the SHARKS were great. Something I could never see except in real life a 15 foot white shark face to face. The second day there was 8 sharks at the back of the vessel - eight!

I was so amazed as they swam by and looked at you. Not as "food" but more curious than anything, I was not afraid, they were simply beautiful. We dove with these amazing animals for three days and I did not want to leave.

I have decided that I want to go again, and again. I am looking into getting a group together to come see them next year. I learned a lot this year with the whites, Discovery Channel just does not do it justice.

It was a great adventure and a chance of a lifetime. I will never forget it!

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