Re: Re: Diving the North Atlantic, sort of…

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Posted by Patrick on July 16, 2006 at 14:13:06:

In Reply to: Re: Diving the North Atlantic, sort of… posted by divinotter on July 16, 2006 at 11:46:21:

The wrecks we’re currently working are the ALICIA (which is nearly complete) and the ERL KING. Alicia was lost 1905 – the last wrecked vessel to be worked by the Key West and Bahamian wreckers. ERL KING was a transitional vessel between sail and steam and carries both mast and working square-rigged sails as well as a propeller and steam engine. These two vessels are to be part of an underwater heritage trail in the park. Our work has consisted of both archival research and field work. The field work included surveying the sites, mapping them, noting and documenting the significant structural and environmental features and finally, generating a final report and site map which will be produced in a laminated card and be available to visitors.

As for Spiegel Grove, I last dived her just 3 months after she went down when she was still on her port side. On that dive, there was a moderate current but visibility was in the 80-100 foot range. Water temp on the surface and at 130’ was the same – 84 degrees. It was a very enjoyable dive. Yesterday though, it was a different story. The current was hauling ass, and the viz was very poor – maybe as little as 15-feet in some places, and no escape from the current. You had to crawl the wreck to keep from getting swept off. Given the conditions, it just wasn’t possible to judge the growth situation on the wreck. All-in-all, not an enjoyable dive, but very interesting.

It blows me away the way the dive shops & charter boat companies downplay the rigorousness of this dive to tourists who may be (or, more likely, not) skilled but obviously way out of shape.

One of the women on our boat made it to the mooring buoy along the granny line, decided that this was not going to be a fun dive, and aborted. Talking to her later on the boat, she seemed a bit embarrassed about bailing. I assured her she did exactly the right thing and asked how long she’d been diving. “Ihave 17 dives” she told me proudly. I repeated what a good job she had done evaluating the dive re her skill level, and cursed a business that would setup a tyro diver on as challenging a dive as the Spiegel is.

Stay wet

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