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St. Clair Dive 7-20-2008
MichScubaMike - 7/20/2008 8:12 PM
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Category: Educational
Comments: 1
Hello All,

Thought you might like to see this. The attached link to YouTube is not me, but is video of the wreck that I dove this past Sunday (July 20th). The wreck is of the M. E. Tremble. It was a three masted schooner that sunk in the St. Clair River on September 7th, 1890. The shipwreck is in 65 feet of water. My dive book lists this as an "advanced" dive as the current in the Saint Clair river is really strong. If you notice from the video, the divers are cruising along and not having to swim much. What they are doing for swimming is swimming perpendicular to the current to get them away from shore and out to the wreck. You jump in up river of the wreck and let the current drag you to the wreck. What makes it difficult is that you need to be on the lookout for stuff in the water and the wreck. Once you come across the wreck, you need to let the current take you up over it and grab on tight when you get to the top, otherwise the current shoots you out fast off the backside.

One of the other club members in by group today took video of my first jump from the dock wall and me swimming the wreck. He will be getting me a copy of the video, so will show you that when I get that. Here is the link to the video....

Attached are some topside pictures that I too today. I was working one on with with the dive shop master from Divers Den in LakeOrion. He is giving me one on one instruction for my Advanced Open Water Certification. Today we did 3 dives.

The first dive was a river float dive. We walked into Lake Huron and used the current to drift us into the mouth of the Saint Clair River. This took us under the BlueWaterBridge that goes between the US and Canada and took us down the St. Clair River. We surfaced then just a little ways north of the Coast Guard docks (Just south of the BlueWaterBridge. It was an amazing dive. TONS of huge fish. I need to brush up on my fish identification. Also, when I make this dive again, I will be loading up my tackle box. Its amazing how many lures are lost that a diver can grab as you are swimming. My dive master even found a skateboard underwater. With the current dragging us, he pretended to be skating under water. It was really funny. As we entered the mouth of the St. Clair River, we had a lake freighter pass over. You can not imagine how loud it is to be in the water with a freighter chugging away. Kinda scary but kinda awesome too. When we surfaced, I had the first opportunity to climb up the boat dock ladders. Basically you wrap one arm around a rung on the ladder. With the other hand, you take your fins off. With the fins in one hand you carefully climb up 2 or three rungs until you close enough to slide your fins onto the cement dock. Then you have to climb up the ladder the rest of the way will ALL your equipment on. Then you have to climb up the three rail railing with wet stuff on. That in itself is an interesting feat!

One the second dive, we dove the M. E. Tremble. This was my first time jumping off the dock into the driver. It kinda takes your breath away. I should have video of that soon. The current was amazing. Just trying to stay with the wreck was a chore and lots of work. It was really awesome though. Swam all over the wreck. Even swam under the aft of the boat. Once again, while out on the wreck, a freighter went over and got to experience the loud sound of the freighter motors just thumping away! I think I am hooked on wreck diving!

Our third dive was a gobbie hunt. A gobbie is a small fish that hangs out in the rocks and timbers that are in the river. It is illegal to spear hunt in michigan, but you can "hunt" these little gobbies with small home made spear guns that are less than 18" in length. Dave the divemaster did the spearing and I helped find the gobbies. We speared some gobbies while we were on the wreck. The spot that we picked on dive 3 what definitely not as good as the gobbies at the wreck. Lots of gobbies, but they were all small size. In a contest based on the biggest weight fish, it didn’t help. The gobbies we took on the wreck were the biggest we were able to get. I think they weighed in at 3.1 ounces. The winning gobbie of the day was a whopping 4.1 or 4.2 ounces.

Well, it was a great day diving. I have a couple advanced dives under by belt on my way to my advanced certification. In the next couple weeks, I am sure we will be scheduling my night dive as well as my deep dive (~100 ft of water). Will let you know how that goes. What great adventures! Being underwater scuba diving is like being on another world. It is a combination of relaxing, exciting, breathtaking, and just an awesome experience.

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ScubaDubaDo - 7/21/2008 3:22 PM


Sounds like you had a blast. One of the places I regret not having dove when I lived in MI was the St. Claire River. Hopefully, on a visit back to family and friends I can have the opportunity to dive it in the future.