Adrenaline junkies paying up to £995 to swim with the sharks 

Coming face to face with a 6ft shark might not be everyone’s idea of an enjoyable dip in the sea.

But if you fancy an encounter with one of the ocean’s great predators, the time is ripe off Land’s End in Cornwall.

Our photographs show a snorkeler getting within inches of a blue shark as it glides through the clear waters more than ten miles from shore.

Coming face to face with a 6ft shark might not be everyone¿s idea of an enjoyable dip in the sea. But if you fancy an encounter with one of the ocean¿s great predators, the time is ripe off Land¿s End in Cornwall

Coming face to face with a 6ft shark might not be everyone¿s idea of an enjoyable dip in the sea. But if you fancy an encounter with one of the ocean¿s great predators, the time is ripe off Land¿s End in Cornwall

Coming face to face with a 6ft shark might not be everyone’s idea of an enjoyable dip in the sea. But if you fancy an encounter with one of the ocean’s great predators, the time is ripe off Land’s End in Cornwall

‘Adrenaline junkies’ are happy to pay £995 at weekends or £840 on weekdays for a specialist charter boat trip that takes up to five of them out to swim with the sharks.

At this time of year, the sharks, mainly females, start coming in towards our south-west coast from the mid-Atlantic to have their babies, known as pups, and to fatten up as the temperatures rise.

Professional diver and boat skipper Charles Hood, 58, who has been running the trips for seven years, attracts the sharks towards his 24ft rigid hull inflatable boat by throwing a bucketful of ‘rubby dubby’ – made from minced fish, bran and fish oil – into the water.

Our photographs show a snorkeler getting within inches of a blue shark as it glides through the clear waters more than ten miles from shore

Our photographs show a snorkeler getting within inches of a blue shark as it glides through the clear waters more than ten miles from shore

Our photographs show a snorkeler getting within inches of a blue shark as it glides through the clear waters more than ten miles from shore

It releases a scent that the sharks are able to pick up from several miles away.

Mr Hood said yesterday: ‘It’s for experienced snorkelers. The aim is to try to promote UK sharks as a thing of beauty, something we should be going to look at like any other wildlife.

‘There are a lot of myths about how dangerous these sharks are. You are not their natural food. Blues eat mackerel, sardines and squid mainly. I think they view you as another creature in the sea.

‘They are curious and will sometimes give you a nudge to see what you are. Most of the people we get coming along are adrenaline junkies who do lots of outdoor activities. We advise them to avoid wearing anything white or shiny as that might make a shark mistake you for a bit of bait. No one’s ever been bitten.’

Mr Hood’s website makes it clear to prospective customers that it is not a ‘cage trip’, where divers are inside a protective metal cage in the water, and adds: ‘If you enter the water you will be in the shark’s natural habitat, on its terms with all the associated risks.

‘However, the experience is indescribably awe inspiring.’

At this time of year, the sharks, mainly females, start coming in towards our south-west coast from the mid-Atlantic to have their babies, known as pups, and to fatten up as the temperatures rise

At this time of year, the sharks, mainly females, start coming in towards our south-west coast from the mid-Atlantic to have their babies, known as pups, and to fatten up as the temperatures rise

At this time of year, the sharks, mainly females, start coming in towards our south-west coast from the mid-Atlantic to have their babies, known as pups, and to fatten up as the temperatures rise

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