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Reel Recovery August 31, 2009

Posted by Chris Sullivan in Equipment.
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As I mentioned a couple of days ago, Brad lost his reel on August 31st, 2008 on a drift dive between the Lillie Parsons and the James B. King. What I haven’t mentioned yet was our attempts that day to recover it. We found the bag floating in the shipping channel. Captain Lawrence and his trainee Chantal were crewing the boat, and we were trying to assemble a dive team to go down and fetch the reel.

Unfortunately, when Chantal threw out a tag line, it got caught in the prop, disabling the vessel. So Dave, in what I now consider a highly risky manoeuvre, jumped in the water to cut it away, while we held on for dear life to the line which was now obviously attached to a reel that was well stuck to the bottom of the river.

As the current took hold of the boat, the line grew tighter and tighter, finally ending up tight as a guitar string while holding the entire weight of the boat. Eventually, we had to cut the line, an operation that looked pretty dangerous, because the line was so tight. Lawrence, our boat captain, ascertained our position with what he said was a high degree of certainty and promised us that he could locate the exact spot where we’d left it, despite not having a GPS unit or any other electronics more sophisticated than a depth sounder.

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