Dive report 11-20-15, Living the Dream!!
Posted by bartman on 11/20/2015, 4:10 pm
I love diving in November because it is the time of year the river where I bottle dive runs almost gin clear. After much discussion last night with several very cranky divers, who could not go, so sorry, I found my vic, ah dive partner, who was willing to give it a try. This year it seems there is a lot of local competition for a type of bottle called a ten pin and today I was determined to find one - So you know these bottle dives are centered around the Sandy Hook area, which for some reason seems to be where all the people from the 1800s threw their crap in the water. People have been bottling there for like 40 years, so this is not very big secret. |
Anyway , as I was driving up the parkway I get a message that the vis is really good, so now I am like pumped!!!! This is going to be good!!! I am deciding who to give all my extra ten pins I find!!!!!!! Just imagine a very out of shape diver rubbing his greedy little hands together, so you get the idea.
Overseeing this little escapade is the Stan the Great Wizard of Sandy Hook. Just like the Wizard in the Wizard of Oz, Stan is all knowing about the hook region and he is the guy to go to when you need answers. So last nite Stan the Great Wizard of Sandy Hook, sent me a message, the time you want to get in is 08:30, “to time the tide just right”. Now earlier this week I showed up at 0750 for a 0745 jump in and I am still sore from the verbal beating I got from the All Knowing Great One, so I was like ok, fine - 0830 it is.
I should mention also there is another more dark, sinister character involved in this story as well. Like the wicked witch of the north, or east in the story, I don’t know, there is this wicked male witch diver who I will call Nob H. of the South. He has staked out the south end of the area we dive, or so he says. We were warned NOT TO GO IN HIS AREA!!!!. Last nite I received a email message from Nob that said “ You two are raping the river. Remember this,..... hogs eat, PIGS get slaughtered “ so I figured this guy means business. So stupid they are just old bottles!!!!! But I want them ALLLL aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…………….. this bottle diving is serious stuff lolololol
So we get there, set up and man it looks good, but the water seems to be running a little fast. No worry, The Great All Knowing Wizard of Sandy Hook Stan said 0830 and we were going. I assured my dive partner I will call Harreee, not his real name, it will be fine. Like in the movie Jaws when the Mayor says its ok to get in the water lololol.
So we plan the dive and dive the plan – the plan was to head north with the slow moving tide to a piling we know and then I will tie off to the piling, Harree will clip off to my line with his wreck reel and I will bring the flag. Let me say this I HATE DIVE FLAGS!, but harree is like an eagle scout and stated we have to bring the f-en thing so of course we did – No getting separated, great everything is good!!!
So I jump in and notice the bottom moving by really quickly, harry is following along and I can tell by the look in his eyes that we are moving way to quick!!!! – I check the time it is 0835 and THE TIDE IS SCREAMMING ALONG AT LIKE 5 KNOTS!!! I am clawing onto rocks, crap, concrete and rebar and banging into all sorts of soft mushy disgusting bottom stuff, but there is no turning back!!! We are caught in the flow, I am cursing that wizard bigtime for the 0830 jump in. After like several minutes, of terrified dragging the bottom out of control, we make it to the piling.
I am being pinned against it like a dead seal.. Harree is trying not to smash into me but he is now plowing into me like the boat that hit the dead seal…lololol…..ok I tie off my reel and the f-en dive flag is being pulled so strongly by the current that the line is actually humming and the float is being pulled under – Great ok I let go of the piling and I shoot north, I realize that the reel is unwinding line at like mach 1!!! – iam like OH NO!!!! – Let me pause and say not every place around sandy hook is happy to see divers in front of their houses or places of business, and now I am heading into UNFRIENDLY territory!!!. Iam heading into the Land of Boat traffic!!!
Suddenly my wreck reel jams in a tangle and I am abruptly stuck in the current!!!!lolololol – I have never been so happy to see that reel tangled. Now being an expert my reel almost never tangles, it is rare, but in this case it did happen. So I am hanging onto the reel which is tied to the piling and the flag is being pulled north and dragging on me and I am like OK, this is fine, no worries, I am an expert, I can do this.
I look over,Harree is hanging onto a downed piling on the bottom, like a squirrel and we both are surrounded by tons of nasty black mud and fish carcasses from the local fisherguys. Not the best place to be but we are safe, I am warm, and we can wait for the tide to let up, which should only be a few more minutes…...
Well after 20 minutes of hanging on, the current is letting up a bit and harree starts looking around for stuff on the bottom – I am not moving so I am just watching. He starts digging in the silt, kicking up mud, which is now blowing in to my face like a driving snowstorm , which I hate,I cant see anything and I am imaging worms and nastys all over my face. He is picking up rotten fish bones and touching all sorts of disgusting crap.
Finally he moves away and I am at rest – You know it’s amazing how strong that wreck reel line is,mine is pulled tight like a piano wire in the current with me hanging on the end.
Harree comes back and clips off to my line, then I see him looking the situation over and he ties himself to the piling on the bottom as well –Smart Man.. Another 15 minutes go by, the current is getting better, I am cold, and my hand is numb from the death grip I have on the reel. I see harry in the distance, it looks like he is collecting fish heads or something.
I signal that I am ready to begin my dive looking for the 1800s bottles I know are somewhere down here. He is telling me he is freezing, it is almost 40 minutes into the dive and the current is still going out!!! –
Ok off we go looking for stuff and I cant find anything, not a big deal because it is hard to find these ten pins– Harree on the other hand bag is bulging with all the bottles he has found. I find a old china plate concreted in and I spend like 5 minutes banging on it, I find bottles but not the ones I want, I see Harree has a lady leg bottle in his bag, OHHHHHHHH Nob H is going to be mad!!!!!lololol that’s one of his bottles or so he says lololol
Finally we start heading back and the current seems to have just about stopped, We go slow, I kid myself its because Harree is dragging a huge bag of bottles but really I suck at swimming lolol – the vis is really good and there are tiny flounders and baitfish everywhere – I am picking up free fishing equipment lost on the bottom and scoring nicely – we get to the exit and pop up 70 minutes after we started, the tide is just stopping now – we go through the booty – harree has like 10 bottles but no ten pins – I got an old redbank bottle and a bunch of fishing junk – we are celebrating!!!!! It’s the finding that’s the fun!!!!! Harry pulls out a 50 cent piece looking old bone and tells me it is either a Mako vertebra or a Thresher. I don’t know about makos but there are threshers still caught in this area. He found it in the muck where were tied off.
No ten pin but that’s for another day, it was a cool November dive, just time the tides correctly…
that is all