Monday, June 02, 2008

Sharks in Troncones Are Pissed

They're seeing red and are hell-bent on ruining our next vacation. After a fatal shark attack a month ago, Mexican authorities decided to use baited hooks to kill sharks who seemed to be acquiring a taste for surfers down there. As if they were saying, "up yours" to the hunters, the sharks killed another surfer on May 24 and maimed a third (biting of a thumb) last week. Get the story here. That's three attacks in a month for the Troncones area, a high number by even the standards of Oregon surfers, who may hear about one attack a year on the whole coast line. Experts are blaming this new sharkiness on global warming--yet another reason to kick the douchebags out of the Whitehouse and ride your bike more.

I'm taking this personally because we've already booked tickets and a vacation house in Troncones for next month. Since hearing this gory news, my wife and family have forbidden me to go in the water down there, and quite honestly, I'm not to sure how comfortable I'd feel sitting in the lineup with fresh blood still tinting the waves.

It looks like we're going to lose our deposit on the beach house, which I guess is understandable. I thought I had covered my ass by buying insurance for my airline tickets, but it doesn't look like bailing on a trip because of "the fear" is actually covered. By canceling my trip, I'm not going to be the only one losing money. This strange series of shark attacks will take a serious toll on the tourist industry in Troncones. I wish I had the balls to go anyway...

What would you do? More importantly, where would you go as an alternative in July, knowing you'll probably be starting the vacation almost a grand in the hole?

39 comments:

fstopr said...

Dagnabbit Man! Go anyway! :)

Anonymous said...

Get yourself one of these sexy suits...

http://sharkcamo.com/scubapamstore.jpg

Or go and head north to longboard heaven Saladita & keep your toes above the water.

pushingtide said...

That's a tough one Sis. I would go anyway and enjoy the Mexican beach life but I guess it would be torture not to surf and you would end up out there. I'd still surf, but I don't have a little kid either. Tough one mate. Good luck.

Daniel said...

Get yourself a 10'0" and hit it!

tres_arboles said...

I'd go but I wouldn't let my son get more than three feet away from me in the water. If you still want an "away" experience next month and not spend much, drop me an email and we'll set you up at our place in Washington for dimes on the dollar. You can be one of the first to stay there, it's not "just Oregon," yet it's only a three hour drive from PDX.

David

Nash said...

dude, be a bro let me and Slim have the house if its already paid for.

Chum said...

Nash, you're such a grizzled waterman. Of course you can have the house. Sharks fear guys like you. You just have to pay for the second week and your ticket down there. Can you cover that? ;-)

I love the shark-repellant suit, by the way, and the zebra stickers for the bottom of the board. That's one of the best links I've seen in a while.

David, I'd love to take you up on the generous beach house offer. Seriously. Maybe not July but soon!! The place is looking great!

Shakas \.../
(or sharkas, in this case)

slim said...

Everything has risks. Odds are you'll die on the 26 before a toothy mex gets ya. Don't be obsurd. Go. Does this mean the honeymoon's canned too?

slim said...

oops, "absurd".

Chum said...

So would you plan a back-country ski trip on a dangerous mountain during avalanche season if three people had already been buried there? I guess you'd have to be pretty core.

Gaz said...

This is a bad precedent to allow Rick, is every vacation from this point forward going to be shark proofed? The logic trail will leave you mowing the lawn with steel toed boots only......

Chum said...

Good point. That would rule out South Africa. Not something I want to do. But we're making headway on exchanging tickets for a new Mexican locale...

slim said...

Apples and oranges, Sissy.

Chum said...

I won't eat either if they have razor blades in them. But I guess that's why I'm the Sissy.

Chum said...

Oh, and wouldn't driving on the 26 be a banana?

jdog77 said...

Hey its probably gonna be way less crowded down there! But I guess that makes you more of a target.

Those tigers are way more scary than the Whites. Statistically though you very safe. But I have never had any luck using statistics with my wife.

You could skip the sunburn and Haole rot and go to Tofino. Whats up with that place? Ever been? You could probably just drive.

G said...

I've got the perfect solution - it'll leave everyone satisfied. We'll all go, but Nash and Slim have to bathe in chunky chum guts before we paddle out. But since they're so core they won't mind. That way if by some randon chance a shark does approach, the brawny bros can take them on and we'll be left to surf in peace.

Chris Edwards said...

My girlfriend and I are actually in Troncones right now. Came down for some surf and sun and upon arrival found the lineup to be completely empty. Didn't take long to hear the shark stories floating around the local bars. The one good thing is that the attacks happened South of all the good surf spots, but unfortunately right in front of our beach house...hope to get in the water tomorrow, hope even more to make it out of the water...adios

-Chris (Seattle)

Chum said...

Dude. Not to keep this thread on fire (or to scare Chris above), but a local message board for Zihua has rumors circulating that there were actually five attacks, but only 3 were reported:

http://www.zihuatanejo.net/wwwboard/messages/100584.html

John T said...

Did you know there have been attacks right here on the Oregon coast? Even in well known surf areas. Might as well sell all your designer boards and quit!
Suck it up. On one blog entry you're complaining about not getting paid by Nau and now you're blowing a grand. Must be nice.

Chum said...

Wow. I wasn't aware of that John... Sharks? Here? Thanks for dropping the science, Darth Hater.

OS said...

John T, sounds like Gerry's stoke rubbed ya a little wrong last week. Would you really want your wife and daughter swimming in Troncones right now? And who "designs" your boards btw?

Chum...The good news is that the owners of the house will honor our deposit at a later date due to the bizarre circumstances. I'm still holding out hope that they refund all or some of our deposit as they seem to be reasonable and sympathetic folk.

Foulweather... said...

I wish I had this dilema.

John T said...

All I'm saying is that the sharks were there a lot longer than us. As long as we're out there in any locale, they are there too. I've been as close as 20 ft to smaller ones (5ft) and decided to go in. I'm still surfing though. You can't live life worrying about what might happen. If you did that you would never get in a car.
As far as my wife and kid go, my wife won't go in the water (her choice) and my child I would take into waist high. Would I surf? Hell yeah. Maybe I don't make as much as you guys and losing $1000 is no big deal to you, but for me, that would take a while to save.
Boardwise: Hammer, Schroeder, Takayama (actually shaped by him and bought used) and Santa Cruz (had to try a popout before I could say anything on the subject.) Sure I wouldn't mind a "designer" board, they look nice, but hell I can't afford it and I doubt it would make me surf any better.
It sad when people (including myself) start to feel that money is no object.

Nash said...

Core to the Core bros. So Core I actually make it to the park for dong patrol G. Maybe a good compromise is for you guys to go to the same place but leave the boards at home and sea kayak! Yack attack bros!

Chum said...

Takayama was a "designer" last time I checked. And $1000 is a lot of money, but this surf trip was planned while I was still employed by Nau (thanks for bringing up that subject again).

I'm hustling work as we speak so that I can continue going on these trips, and also respect the needs and concerns of my family.

You swim with sharks regularly? I guess I do too then, but it obviously isn't a black and white issue. When was the last time Northern Oregon had 3 attacks in a year, let alone in a month?

Chris Walters said...

"Experts are blaming this new sharkiness on global warming"

I think some evidence from the experts is in order. Maybe a little research before blame is placed.

Funny how "global warming" has replaced "God is mad at us" as peoples' superstitious explanation for things like this.

But I'm glad the douchebag will be gone soon, and I like riding my bike.

And I'm with you, there is no way I would go down there right now. An occassional attack is one thing, a small risk far outweighed by the benefits, but three in two months in the same area is too much for me. Those of you who are too cool or too dumb to fear sharks can have fun in the empty lineups.

Anonymous said...

just go, and enjoy a nice mexican vacation. If you feel like surfing when you get there then go. If not, follow your instincts

Here is an article from today:

http://www.surfline.com/surfnews/article_bamp.cfm?id=15897

Anonymous said...

"Shark experts believe unusually cool sea-surface temperatures could be partly responsible for the attacks," - I thought it was global warming..

http://in.reuters.com/article/scienceNews/idINN0336070720080603

Anonymous said...

Chris Walters: Global warming refers to increases in global average surface temperatures. Climate changes are a result of global warming (e.g., latitudinal shifts in storm tracks) and can be very different in different regions (and could include changes to ocean currents, which incidentally, would likely have strong influences on marine life). Sorry, but I had to drop some science...

By the way, Chum is right, multiple attacks by highly aggressive sharks in a very small area (a 10-20 mile stretch)over a very short time period is different than a rare bumping or mouthing by a great white (w/ only 1 surfer--a kneeboarder--ever killed by a great white in all of CA for example). At least that's what I tell myself when I put on my 5-mil and head out for a solo surf at my local beach break. I'd give Troncones a pass this year and go some other time. The odds are still really low that you'd even see a shark there right now but it'll be hard to relax in the water.

Anonymous said...

bag it and come out to the farest west point you can see while crossing into WA from the Astoria-Megler.
-DCT

Anonymous said...

Love the new banner!
-Daniel

festus porkmeyer said...

Take the family to the redneck rope swing instead. Spend whatever you save on Viagra and blow. Duh.

Chris Walters said...

Anonymous: Thanks for your reply, but it's not helpful and not very scientific.

No doubt global warming affects sea currents and marine life, as you said, but that's a broad statement that doesn't address the issue here. The issue is whether global warming affects marine life in a way that caused a spike in shark attacks in Troncones. Got any science on that?

Chris

Gaz said...

Chris, the issue here is whether or not Sissy Fish is a nickname or not.

It hardly rises to the level of global discourse though..... seems you have a conference to chair somewhere or a maybe even a blog in you......

jdog77 said...

Take a look at this surfline article on this issue:

http://www.surfline.com/surfnews/article_bamp.cfm?id=15897

Has some interesting ideas about the recent attacks. One is pretty interesting about poachers abandoning drift needs with dead fish in the area. Read the article not just the pics.

Hey Chum- How about a new post? This one could a little nasty.

Need some insightful humor.

Chris Walters said...

Gaz: Yeah, I tend to get too serious. Over it now.

Chum said...

Nothing like a healthy debate! Now for something completely different...

muebles en leon said...

I suppose every person must read it.