I had a group of divers from DD Dive and they wanted to going diving. Ralph the store owner and I conversed about 6 times that day trying to interpret the weather. In the end Ralph said he was very confident of his divers so lets go. The plan was to dive the Buccaneer but without a mooring on site and 3-foot waves I felt that might be too much to ask from our divers and me. After a brief chit-chat we headed for the Mack. I knew our normal 1-hr trip was not going to apply because as soon as I cleared Northerly Island I was in 1-2’s and I was still behind the breakwall. I throttled up and then back and then up again and back again trying to determine the right speed so that the ride was not too bad but yet we would still get to the Mack and back for fireworks by 2115. I had already broken out the 100ft bridle and set it up. 80 minutes after leaving Burnham Harbor I had Ralph at the bow hooking the stern mooring line on the Mack in 3 – 4 waves, but in one attempt Ralph had the mooring and we setting up. With the 100 foot bridle, the R/V was riding out the sea smoothly as the waves passed beneath her.
We got our divers ready and one-by-one they entered the 73F water and made their was to the bow and then down to Chicago’s best wreck. The thermocline was around 30 feet where the temperature plunged to 47F. These wetsuit divers did well and knocked out a 30-minute dive. Once we got everyone aboard, which was actually quite easy with the swinging ladder on the R/V, I headed back to Chicago while the divers enjoyed some Coronas and Blue Moons, funny no one wanted WCD Pineapple. Even with a following sea the ride back was a little rough as it was dark enough that I couldn’t maintain the speed I needed and read the seas for a smooth ride. In a little over 30-minutes we were maneuvering past the Chicago Lighthouse. Having great radar made the trip a breeze. Well shortly after arriving the fireworks show started and we had the best “seat” in the house as just by sheer luck we had chosen a spot south of the barge and with the NNE wind we were in perfect position.
Another great day on the Lake. Oh, by the way, for 2 of our group this was their first dives after being certified.