Craig Clasen was hunting yellow fin tuna with fellow fisherman Cameron Kirkconnell, photographer D.J Struntz (DJ Strunz’s portfolio) and film maker Ryan McInnis in the Gulf of Mexico when a 12 ft. Tiger Shark aggressively approached and circled Ryan McInnis in deep waters south of the Mississippi River’s mouth. Regarded by many as two of the world’s best free diving spearfishermen, Craig and Cameron have come into contact with thousands of sharks.
Craig Clasen immediately swam to his friend with his spear gun.
‘I positioned myself between Ryan and the shark and I tried to watch it for a second, hoping it would pass us by,’ explained 32-year-old Mr Clasen.
‘I noticed that the shark was getting tighter and tighter and just kept trying to get a back angle on us and behaving in an aggressive manner.
‘The shark made a roll and looked like it was going to charge us so I just went ahead and took the conservative route and put a shaft through its gills.
‘Cameron and I have been around sharks for years and we all have a lot of experience with them but this encounter had a different feel to it.
‘Down in my core I really felt the shark was there to feed. I didn’t want it to come to that.’
Craig spent nearly two hours wrestling with the giant 12ft shark, spearing it seven times and even attempting to drown the beast before eventually finishing it off with a long blade knife. (Rest of the story at SurfThereNow.com)