Day Two Log
Day 2, August 3, 1998
Author: Brent Rudmann
Activities: Three dives performed today, with purpose of measuring the previously found objects, and some recently found ones. Outline of hull remains to be mapped. GPS mapping performed to pinpoint location of wreck via landmarks for future reference. Acquired 2 more tanks from rangers and sent two crews to Gurneville for supplies. Site plan updated. Parameters assigned to crew in effort to create a full report by the end of the Project.
Wreck is listing to port, drive shaft pillows are all in sand at port and raised slightly at starboard.
During the dives today, one story was in the minds of us all, especially the diver's:
Sept. 28, 1908
Diver Fights With Octopus
Martin Lund, a diver for the Pacific Coast Wrecking Company, had a terrible experience with a monster devil fish while he was in seven fathoms of water Saturday afternoon at Fort Ross Cove, working on the Pomona, which was wrecked some months ago. Lund was in the hold of the wrecked vessel, when he was seized about the leg by the tentacle of a devil fish. He slashed at the fish with his knife and gave the signal to be hoisted. The devil fish had too strong a hold on him, and he had to signal the helpers to ease their efforts to haul him to the surface because his helmet was giving way. Another tentacle grasped him about the waist, and still another about the neck. Then another grasped him about the legs and he had to fight hard for life. After cutting two of the tough tentacles that grasped him in a deathlike embrace, Lund saw the creature preparing to strike with its beak, and made a lunge for the head just in time to deal a death blow.
Luckily, none of the Project divers met descendants of the Devil Fish!
Well, we did not see any Devilfish, but we saw a lot of sea life! On our first dive, my team and I explored further north of the end of the drive shaft. We discovered this huge object, later identified as Boiler #2. It seems that this object is out of place, having been blown up by dynamite, as was frequently the case in these waters to reduce navigation hazards. I found the boiler beautiful, teaming with sea life and encrusted with strawberry anemones and purple sponges. Many juvenile rockfish hid in nooks and crevices and I dislodged a big cabezon. The holes in the boiler would make beautiful photographs as they let the light in. With fifteen feet of horizontal visibility, we can see very well, which is exceptional for this part of California in summer. It gets hot in August, bringing a plankton bloom which lasts until early fall. This week we are lucky and I suppose this may be due to El Niño again. I find the surge minimal because the wreck is in fairly deep water (fifteen to forty feet it seems.) I dove on the Frolic shipwreck, located in ten to fifteen feet of water further up the coast, and divers get really battered by the pounding surf in such shallow waters! I am glad to be here and I am learning the techniques I will need to map the Frolic. I just graduated from San Jose State University and decided to further my studies with a Masters project. The Frolic has a wooden hull of which little remains, so I am used to searching for artifacts and finding scattered remains. The Pomona seems in really good shape in comparison, and its steel frame provides attachment to bull kelp, barnacles, scallops and anemones. In addition, there are LOTS of red abalone everywhere! Towards the end of our dive, we find a double bollard, which we map on our slate. Our thirty minutes are up and its time to ascend. As we get on the boat, a spotted harbor seal surfaces in the kelp beds nearby. It just can't get any better that this.
San Jose State University