A stretch of beach closed due to multiple great white sharks sightings along the Huntington Beach coast reopened at 11 a.m. Tuesday, lifeguards said.
Sunset Beach and Surfside Beache reopened to beachgoers after crews patrolling for sharks found three to four of them all under 8 feet — smaller than the sharks that prompted the closure.
The beaches were closed to swimmers and surfers Monday night after multiple sharks, young and adult, were spotted 50 yards off shore, Huntington Beach Marine Safety Lt. Claude Panis said.
"This is the first time I've ever seen it with nobody in the water, ever," said beachgoer Angie Laporte.
Huntington Beach police flew a chopper over the area and spotted several young sharks as well as at least three measuring 10 to 12 feet in length, Panis said.
Lifeguards had just reopened the beach following shark sightings over the weekend.
On Sunday, several sharks, estimated to be anywhere from 8 to 12 feet in length, were spotted 150 yards off the coast at Sunset Beach.
The 1.1-mile closure from Seal Beach to Sunset Beach was reopened Monday morning, but closed once again after the sharks were spotted even closer to shore in the afternoon at 3:40 p.m.
There are no reports of aggressive behavior displayed by the great whites, Panis said.
The beaches were officially closed at 3:45 p.m. Sunset Beach will remain closed through the evening until Tuesday morning.
The sightings come a week after a woman was bitten in the waters of Newport Beach, about 16 miles away from Sunset Beach.
The woman, a triathlete, was hospitalized with wounds consistent with a shark attack. She remained in the hospital following the ordeal. Doctors at the time said it wasn't clear if she would have full use of her right arm after the attack.
Experts believe shark sightings are becoming more frequent due to warmer waters and the effects of El Niño-related weather.