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AtlanticDivers

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Finally, an inspiring weekend day of wreck diving.  This past month has been hit and miss with calm weather or good visibility, but today both assimilated.

Leaving the dock with eleven Atlantic Divers and the Dina Dee crew we pushed off to the Spanish Steamer, Vizcaya .  Atlantic Divers annually plans October Vizcaya dives to reflect on the date of this double tragedy.  This large steamer and the other victim, a coal schooner the Cornelius Hargraves collided at night on October 30, 1890.  A desperate struggle for survival followed , where sixty passengers and crew of the Vizcaya perished.  The entire crew of the schooner survived, but the vessel sank quickly less than 100 yards east of the steamer.  Diving on this autumn day gives divers a sense of the conditions, when this event took place 120 years ago.  This wreck is a true treasure wreck for many reasons.  Coins, jewelry, silverware, and ornate artifacts continue to be uncovered.    A favorite wreck site of mine, I have shared numerous rewarding memories on this hulk. On a White Star night dive several Octobers  ago, I selected the Vizcaya as the destination. It was protested by the late Chuck Wine that the wreck was unworthy and had been picked over all summer long.  Chuck apologized after the dive, having recovered two deadeyes, and a bursting bag of crustaceans including a fifteen pound lobster. Today, we would all leave with more good memories.   

  The efficiency of  Dina Dee's mate Chris O'Donnell under the direction of Captains Roger and George is unprecedented.   With the rise of a tennis ball, the boat was hooked in under five minutes.  The teams of divers were greeted by tropical conditions including visibility of thirty to forty feet and a 63 degree temperature with no thermocline.  This induced exceptional bottom time for all.

Kevin McCourt’s first North Atlantic ocean experience proved to be a bonus for the wait.  He was able to witness his experienced guide John Copeland recover a lignum vitae, bulls eye and a block and tackle.  Once more John got to practice a few more times shooting a lift bag.  I swear, I fixed all the holes in that loaner bag.   I don’t think John will borrow that bag much more.    

Others found prolific fish numbers and  lobster hunting a bonus topping the conditions.  The expanse and relief of this wreck provides grand sightseeing for all on an endless variety of wreckage.  Mate Chris, Bret Lutz and Mike Edelen nailed  gigantic tautogs as did the usual killers Captain George and Roger.  Although some discoveries did not pan out today...  A rewarding day was had by all remaining including Steve Seeberger, Bill Teague, Dan Burke, Matt Herrick Sr. And Jr., and long distance navigator Steve Lagreca.

Our final scheduled dive ventures to the Great Isaac on November 7...Don’t miss out on our final 2010 Dina Dee trip.


Good Wreck Diving!
Gene




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