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July 08, 2010

Farallon Islands Becoming a Popular Swim Hole

Karen Rogers, a 43-year-old Bay Area native, planned to swim 30 miles from the Farallon Islands to San Francisco Bay last Friday -- becoming the first woman and third person overall to do so. Strong winds and 12-foot waves forced her to abort the swim though early Friday morning.

Last month, a relay team attempted to swim from the Farallon Islands to the Golden Gate Bridge, but fell short when one swimmer became disoriented due to the 49-degree water.

While I admire Karen and the relay teams' attempts from a human endurance standpoint, the Farallones are a nutorious salad bar for large great white sharks -- especially this time of year. In fact, the first person to attempt the swim, Ted Erikson, reportedly swam within 50 feet of three great white sharks before they were scared away with gun shots from a support boat.

I realize sharks donn't intentionally attack people. However, if you willingly dive into their buffet, you become fair game in my book. I'm left asking myself... Is it worth the personal risk and the potential shark backlash from the public if one of the great white sharks mistakes Karen for a steller sea lion?

I don't think so. Do you?

Posted by jroualdes at July 8, 2010 06:20 AM