A great white's dorsal fin cut through the top of the water as it cruised the shoreline.
“All of a sudden, we saw this person in a kayak, and we saw a fin 10 feet from it,” said Lizzy Jenkins.
Everyone else in the water immediately ran onto the beach.
“We started swimming and people on the shore started waiving us in,” said Christina Proulx.
They all watched as a kayaker was seemingly stalked by the shark.
“There were hundreds of people on the beach, and they were all at the edge, yelling paddle paddle, paddle!” said Dave Alexander.
“Everyone was screaming, ‘shark,’”said Haley O’Brien.
Then the guy noticed and everyone started screaming shark, and he started paddling coming towards the shore. Everyone was screaming at Walter Szulc, Jr. It was his first time kayaking.
He didn't see the people run from the water. He didn't hear them yelling, either.
He had no idea what was lurking a few feet behind him.
“So I looked behind me and that's when I saw the shark, it was pretty much right there, I got a glimpse of it. It was a good size and it had a fin sticking out, so I just turned and paddled,” said Szulc.
“Then he started booking it,” said Debbie Sutton, “You could see the darkness of it. It was longer than the kayak…it was crazy big.”
Szulc paddled in safely-he never turned around long enough to see it's face.
He didn't need to, it was already too close for comfort.
“I took a quick glance, probably 7-8 feet behind me,” said Szulc.
The beach was immediately closed to swimmers. Despite the warnings, when lifeguards left, some still ventured in the water, even with shark's preferred meals swimming just a few feet away.
A lot of beachgoers at Nauset beach were nervous about stepping back into the water, especially after seeing a 12-to-14-foot great white shark only a few hundred yards from where they were swimming.
“I've been coming to this beach my whole life. I never thought I’d see a shark.”
Szulc, the kayaker with the close encounter, said when they first got to the beach, his daughter was afraid to go in the water.
Like many, she’s afraid of sharks.
Szulc says he teased her about it, and assured there's nothing to worry about. After all, what are the odds?
“That's exactly what I was thinking, and I found the odds, and they're not exactly as good as I thought,” said Szulc.
Along the Cape coast, there have been frequent great white shark sightings throughout the past week.
This is the closest any of these sharks have gotten to people so far this summer.
The Harbor Master said the shark swam south toward Chatham and probably away from the coastline.
The Nauset beach was closed for the remainder of the afternoon. It was still undecided, but the beach is expected to reopen tomorrow morning.
Police said a great white shark killed a seal about a half mile up from where the shark was spotted at Nauset Beach. The ‘no swimming’ sign could come down as early as Sunday morning.
Lifeguards will come in around 9:00 in the morning and decide then if the beaches are again safe for swimmers.