Adam “Trout” Traubman, Kayak Fisherman, Hawaii, USA
Aloha, Paul. I just wanted to touch base and thank you again for the Shark Shield. Your timing was impeccable, and I’ll expand on that later. I’d like to first clarify that sharks are obviously not looking to intentionally hurt human beings. They are highly misunderstood and often times punished for following their innate urge to feed on what it thinks it sees as edible, even though it may be a mistake (ie, shark hunt following an attack on a human). But when I am on the water and no longer atop the food chain, I can’t help but feel a little vulnerable… and rightfully so. With a wife and two kids and a third on the way, I promised them I’d try to minimize my risk-ridden hobbies, including kayak fishing and surfing “populated areas.” In the past, I have had run-ins with sharks in Mexico, California, and here in Hawaii. I would prefer to go out on my own terms, if you know what I mean!
Rewind to several weeks ago, I was relieved when I saw the FedEx driver pull up with the package you sent. I was preparing my gear for the following morning, where one of my close kayak fishing buddies and I were to be filmed for a fishing TV show. While there are sharks virtually everywhere in Hawaii, the secret spot we would be visiting was sharkier than the average fishery due to strong currents, prolific ledges/drop-offs, and an abundance of bait fish.
After several hours of good kayak fishing (ono, mahi mahi, kawakawa, uku, etc.), my buddy spotted two sharks below his kayak. The film boat moved up on him and one of the crew kept the bang stick close by. I saw another one off of my bow, and made sure my baits were out of the water and in the tank well. The shark was out of sight, but I still felt its presence. I calmly deployed the Shark Shield and in a fraction of a second there was a huge explosion about 25 feet away on the surface where a shark had slashed and spun around. It was gone and never came back (as far as I know, of course). I left the unit on and we didn’t see anything for the rest of the day, other than the fish we boated.
Can I live without a Shark Shield? Probably. Do I want to risk it when the situation could easily be avoided by using a Shark Shield? Definitely not.