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Interested in  Scuba Diving? Then you’ve come to the right place!

Come join us every 3rd Tuesday (except December) for our Monthly MUD meeting.
Looking for a dive? Check out our Calendar to see what’s on the schedule.

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August 2021 – Newsletter

Michigan Underwater Divers – August 2021 – Newsletter

Next Meeting: Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Southwest Michigan Regional Airport, 1123 Territorial Rd, Benton Harbor, Mi.

Meeting starts at 7:30 p.m. – (3rd Tuesday of every month)

Standard Agenda –

Club President / Officer calls the meeting to order.

  1. Club Officer asks if there are any Visitors and ask them to introduce themselves.
  • Present Specific Club Information
  • Identify dive events upcoming or planned. (Dives & Road Trips) 
  • Identify & discuss diving-related news important to divers.
  • Present any Show & Tell that anyone would like to share – Please!
  • Attendees speak about current diving experiences or “lessons learned” or reinforced from a dive near miss or not!
  • Open session.

Wow, its August already and this will be the 3rd actual “in person” club meeting at the Southwest Michigan Regional Airport. With the fence around the old parking lot down be extra careful driving in or out though.  As a side note, for those who may want some “refreshments” after the meeting, please mention your ideas before the meeting ends – who knows who might show up.   😊

For those who are going to attend the club meeting and have not already reviewed your “own file” membership application form and waiver documents, please get with the club secretary and update them as necessary. After you review these forms, date and initial them that they are now current and correct.

Again, if you are unable to attend, as I know some of our distance challenged members are, you can either download the two forms from the club web site or if you need, the Secretary can email you a current member application form and waiver for you to complete and return. Let me know please!

There is progress on the new club Tee shirts. It was noted last week that our Tee shirt provider has been without power since the most recent storm, and it will be several days before it is restored. So, club shirts will be delayed probably a week or so as he tries to catch up. Perhaps with a little luck we may possible have them by the next meeting.

There are no plans for a club picnic this year. Hopefully this COVID-19 will be history and we can have a planned one next year.

As a reminder, though the club is not sponsoring an Ecology dive this year we ARE still interested in any community, located on a body of water, that would be interested in working with us to sponsor one. Or, if we are not up to having one, perhaps we can plan as a club to participate in a local established one such as the annual Underwater Cleanup in Marquette’s Lower Harbor.

Jim Schulz & Co. are back from the “Annual Mackinaw Shipwreck” dive week where most of the week was great for diving and a good number of divers participated.  I am sure some of the participants will be at the meeting to brag, I mean, talk about the great wreck dives that had. (For example: Cedarville, Minneapolis, William Young, Eber Ward, Sandusky, Barnum, etc.)

Now, Kevin and Amy may not have been on the Mackinaw Shipwreck trip, they got in some heavy diving adventure’s as well. Boat camping at Mackinac might be the upcoming adventure as well as diving underwater bridges and participating in the 3rd Annual Underwater Cleanup in Marquette’s Lower Harbor.

The Muddies have been getting wet this month in the big lake’s, inland lakes and rivers which include dives in the St. Joseph River, big Paw Paw Lake, Lake 16, and local shipwrecks that include the Havana, Ann Arbor 5 and “searching for the Verano”. Summer is burning through fast so get wet soon and often!

Do not forget that there will be a Mermaid Mega Fest 2021, on August 20 thru 22 at the Lake Arvesta Sports Complex, 06464 Arvesta Dr., South Haven, MI 4909. Be aware that Festival admission will be added to general admission during MerFest.

Check their web site for additional details.

Let’s not forget our “Tankful Tuesday” dives. If you can make it, please join on in.

Aug 24: Upper area Lake Cora

Aug 31: Lake 16, Martin, MI

Sept 7: Tiscornia Pier, Benton Harbor (Which pier N or S as determined by the weather)

Sept 14: St. Joseph River, Niles, MI

Sept 21: MUD CLUB meeting (7:30) 1123 Territorial Rd, Benton Harbor, Michigan

Sept 28: South Haven North Pier, South Haven, MI

And lastly, Kevin Ailes posted the following on the club site which is a word to the wise: “Hey boating buddies, I hope you’re being diligent with changing out your water separator. Adding a little HEET for good measure would be wise too. This is nearly a quart of water I decanted out of my 6-gallon reserve tank. Just imagine how much may be sloshing around in your metal tank below the deck. A humid boating season leads to lots of condensation.” (The picture is worth a thousand words).                      

And it would not be surprising if there was another end of meeting “game time” (or something similar).  Who know, you 2 could be a winner—  

See you at the next Mud Club Meeting!

Comments – Questions – Concerns?  Write to                                         

Mary Beth Thar – President – mbthar@comcast.net     

Amy Ailes – V.P. – frogmom1972@gmail.com

Ted Tomaszcwski – Treasurer – cdandwb@outlook.com

Don McAlhany – Secretary / Newsletter / Club Site & FB Site Admindwmack2@comcast.net

Lessons for Life

It was the second dive of the day, and Ann felt good. She was diving with three friends and had seen great things. She returned to the mooring they used, but as she ascended, she couldn’t see the boat. She was confused, thinking maybe they had surfaced at the wrong mooring. Yet she was certain this was the right spot.

On the surface, the divers looked in every direction. No boats in sight. They hadn’t surfaced on the wrong mooring. The boat was gone.

The Diver

Ann was 58, with no known health problems. She was an experienced local diver with an advanced open water ­certification. She exercised ­occasionally but not regularly and was somewhat overweight.

The Dive

Ann and her friends often dived ­together from a private boat. They had ­several local dive sites they liked to ­visit, to take photos and just relax ­underwater.

Each site had a mooring ball permanently attached to an underwater ­anchor, making it easy for them to run out, tie up and dive. Most of the time they left the boat unattended while making their dives.

Today was no different. They split up into two buddy teams and made their dives, leaving no one on the surface. They completed their first dive and then moved the boat to a new location during the surface interval.

For the second dive, they were ­underwater for more than an hour, with an average depth of approximately 25 feet of seawater.

The Accident

On the surface after the dive, the divers were confused. They debated whether they had surfaced on the wrong mooring ball or gotten lost during their dive.

The owner of the boat was confident they were at the right spot.

Small waves and a light surface ­current crossed the location. As each wave passed, they tried to look around for their boat, but it was nowhere in sight. There were no other boats ­anywhere in the immediate vicinity.

They finally concluded that their boat had gotten loose from the mooring ball, and they were on their own. They were going to have to swim to safety. They were several miles from the dock where they kept the boat, but only about 2 miles from shore.

The divers dropped their weights and inflated their buoyancy compensators for the long surface swim. They were tired after spending two hours ­underwater.

Ann was nervous and worried, and said so to the other divers.

To stay in contact with each other, the foursome decided to float on their backs to swim for the beach instead of swimming face down and using their snorkels.

That way they would be able to talk to each other and no one would get lost. It would also make it easier to stay on course.

About two-thirds of the way to shore, Ann’s buddy, Gil, noticed she had grown quiet and was slowing down.

He tried to get her to respond, but she didn’t answer when he called her name. She stopped moving.

He attempted to check for ­breathing and a pulse, but his own exhaustion made it difficult to be sure. He was cold, and his hands were shriveled from ­being in the water for so long.

Gil began towing Ann toward shore. As they got closer, they signaled people on land and got help.

Emergency first responders evaluated Ann on the beach, and she was ­pronounced dead at the scene.


While it’s common practice among some boaters to dive or swim away from their boat, it is dangerous to leave a boat unattended.

Making an hourlong dive with no one on the boat is an invitation to trouble. Lines can come loose, vandals can cut lines, and thieves can steal boats left unsupervised.

In this case, the boat was ­recovered a few miles away. It had come ­untied from the mooring due to the regular wave action and had drifted with the prevailing current. No foul play was suspected.

Regardless, leaving the boat unattended left four divers stranded with no way back to shore but a long swim. Even if they had surfaced within ­moments of the boat coming unsecured, it is ­unlikely they would have been able to swim after the boat and catch it.

An average diver in full gear can swim at only approximately 1 knot per hour, and these divers were tired after two dives.

In this case, Ann suffered cardiac ­arrest and died in the water. Like most people who suffer a heart attack, she had an undiagnosed heart condition. The emotional stress of the situation coupled with the physical work of the swim was too much, and she went into cardiac arrest.

This is a great reminder for all ­divers, and especially older ones, to make sure you are fit enough for the dive and to consult with your doctor regularly. Divers are taught to move slowly through the water, making their average level of work very low. But in an emergency, you might be required to respond by swimming hard, fast or for long ­periods. You must be fit enough to handle ­emergency situations, not just the easy dives.

The report doesn’t include information about the safety equipment ­carried by the divers. At a minimum they should have been carrying surface ­signaling kits with safety sausages to raise their profile above the surface of the water and waves. Heads floating just above the water’s surface are difficult to see under the best of circumstances. A ­signaling mirror would have made it easier to gain someone’s ­attention at a distance as well.

For divers who dive from ­personal boats or from shore, consider a ­personal signaling device such as an emergency position-indicating radio ­beacon (EPIRB). Boats have had these for years; they are now being manufactured to be carried by individuals and are made to take along on a dive.

In this case, the decision to swim ­toward the shore was probably sound. It was only a couple of miles away. Had it not been for the undiagnosed medical condition, they would have been fine. Had they been farther from shore and not in sight of land, or not sure of the direction back to land, they could have stayed floating together and waited for rescue.

That, of course, depends on someone knowing where they were, and missing them when they didn’t return. For that reason, it’s always important to share your plans with someone not along on the trip so they can watch out for you.

Of course, this all could have been prevented if they had brought along someone to watch the boat while they were underwater. A bubble ­watcher with enough experience to handle the boat on the surface would have ­prevented all of this.

Lessons for Life

  • Have a boat master. This is just as ­important as a beach master. Have someone on the surface waiting for you who can render aid or call for help if something happens.
  • Use proper safety equipment. Especially when you are diving on your own, carry the proper signaling equipment to get the ­attention of others on a boat or onshore.
  • Be healthy. Fitness to dive includes r­egular exercise to make sure you are healthy enough to respond to emergency situations in the water. Talk to your doctor to confirm your heart is strong enough for the dive or start an exercise program to make it so.

Leaving the boat unattended has disastrous consequences for four divers in this Lessons for Life scuba diving accident analysis.  Eric Douglas – March 13, 2019

REMEMBER: There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence.

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March 2021- Newsletter

March 2021 – Newsletter

MUD Club

There are NO physical club meetings scheduled thus far for 2021.

In that we arenot able to hold physical club meetings per state rules and do not anticipate being able to continue that practice any time soon, stay tuned. You will be notified immediately when that changes.

Please continue to post your intentions for open dives on the “Michigan Underwater Divers Club Face Book” page and check in on OUR club site.

These are located at:



Remember it is vitally important to stay an active diver during this trying time whether physically diving, providing shore support, or just being present to support diving activities. And doing so while practicing good social distancing and personal hygiene practices as expected.

These activities are what keeps this club alive, active, and relevant. Once you have stopped diving or participating in any fashion, you may never start up again. Stay tuned in and get active!

Along those same lines, Dues Are DUE!

Yes, I know, we are not having regularly in person meetings but if you want to remain or be a club sustaining member it is that time of year. 

Please send you dues ($15) check to our Treasurer at the following address:

Ted Tomaszcwski, 2255 Shiawasee Ln, Stevensville, MI 49127

Club business is ongoing:

Currently our No.1# club concern is, will the Mud Club will be able to continue holding meetings in the “Price Hall Amphitheater”, on the campus of Andrews University as we have been doing since 1977. An email has been sent to our last Andrews University sponsor to determine if the club will be able to continue meeting there when the pandemic concerns have been resolved. There has been No response to our email request on that issue to date.

Other issues under review and consideration by club officers include:

The purchasing of a new supply of Mud Club patches, ball caps with the club logo, and Club T-shirts.  In addition, we had also been looking into the availability of jackets with the club logo as well as zipper sweatshirts with hoods for a long time. The cost for such items has skyrocketed since we last ordered any.

Looking forward to reinstituting Club Events when social distancing requirements have been relaxed or seriously minimized to include:  

Ecology Dive: One of the most favorite activities the club has enjoyed sponsoring and participating in has been “Ecology Dives”. The feedback so far is that “when” the pandemic issues are over we are way overdue in in having another clean up dive. The location is open. Whether that is in Niles along River View Park, the St. Joseph river along Fisherman’s Park in Benton Harbor, or Paw Paw Lake in Coloma/ Watervliet. Its possible that there is a township or community that would sponser one in their community.

“Club Members Annual Picnic’:  Summer/ Early fall, What better time to get together, greet and socialize with other club members. Did I mention that no one EVER goes away hungry? Activities have included diving &/ or kayaking before or afterward eating.

Club News Years Gathering (& Dive):  A tradition for over 44 years is getting in the last dive of the old year and the 1st dive of the new year. For the hale & hearty, or crazy depending on your viewpoint.

Club to sponsor annual training classes (initial or refresher) for First Aid, CPR, O2 Training and AED operation, and Rescue Diver for club members and interested parties.

If we have missed an issue or concern you have or believe there is something the club should consider, please drop a note to any or all club officers. We only know what people tell us and assume the rest.

Contact ANY of your elected officers:

Mary Beth Thar – mbthar@comcast.net              President

Amy Ailes –  frogmom1972@gmail.com           V.P.

Ted Tomaszcwski –   cdandwb@outlook.com     Treasurer;

Don McAlhany – dwmack2@comcast.net            Secretary/ Newsletter/ Club Web Site

Diving Notes:

Wolf’s Marine:  2021 OPEN House – March 20th (9-5 PM) and March 21st

Scuba Obsessed Net cast

Scuba Obsessed Net cast is the premier podcast for passionate scuba diving enthusiasts. Listen each week as our own Muddy, Darrin Jillson, obsesses over all things Scuba. They interview guests, discuss scuba diving in the news and geek out about their scuba dives past and future.                                                                          

2021 Merfest (South Haven) If you like mermaids, this is for you!

Merfest International will be heldAugust 20th-22nd, 2021 at the “Arvesta Sports Complex”, County Road 687, South Haven, Mi 49090   More information as the date approaches.

Under Current Magazine: While You Were Away — Problems in Paradise February 9, 2021

One of our contacts in the Maldives reports that the island of Maafushi, famous for local tourism, has been inundated with garbage during the decline in tourism caused by the pandemic. He says a lot of the islands are becoming like this, having no proper garbage disposal plan. So, they are simply dumping their rubbish, plastic, and all, into the once-pristine sea. Tourists are charged a Green Tax, but little of that money appears to be directed to solving the problem. It’s a crisis that’s destroying the environment.

Scuba Diving Magazine, Undercurrent Reviews Liveaboards, Dive Resorts & Dive Gear

Lessons For Life: Diver Drowns with Full Tank of Air By  Eric Douglas, September 6, 2015 Minor Issues, Major Consequences -A diver panics and drowns with a tank full of air. Miko Maciaszek

Ann and Bill were really getting into scuba diving. It was everything they had imagined it would be, and more. They were diving at a local quarry, and conditions were good overall. When they reached the platform 60 feet down, Ann noticed Bill was having trouble with his weight belt and moved in to help him out.

She did not expect it to be a problem. Fighting with the belt and his gear, Bill twisted to one side and knocked Ann’s regulator from her mouth. Things went downhill from there.

The Divers
A new diver, 24-year-old Ann was in good health. She had made 15 dives total, including four from her initial certification seven months earlier.

She tried to get to the local quarry every month to keep practicing with her dive buddy, Bill, whom she met in dive class. They had become fast friends, and Ann was happy to have a dive buddy with a similar experience level and interests. They were both excited about dive-travel opportunities and taking additional training. Both divers were using a mixture of rented and personal gear. They were buying pieces as they could afford it.

The Dive
Conditions that morning was comparable to what they had learned in. The water was cool — typical for the end of the dive season — and Ann and Bill were able to wear their normal wetsuits.

They planned to make a typical dive for the quarry. They were going to swim out to a marker buoy on the surface and then descend to a platform 60 feet down. From there, they planned to work their way into shallower water, exploring some of the sunken attractions in the quarry. They had made the same basic dive several times before.

Bottom of Form

The Accident
When Ann and Bill arrived at the platform, Ann noticed Bill was having trouble with his weight belt. He immediately kneeled on the platform, trying to get things under control.

After watching Bill struggle for a minute, Ann moved in close to try to help him out. She was getting cold from sitting still on the platform and wanted to move the dive along.

Bill’s BC was loose and moving out of place as he tried to get his weight belt buckled. Ann approached Bill just as he twisted to the side, slinging his BC around.

The sudden movement knocked Ann’s regulator from her mouth. Realizing what had happened, Bill immediately tried to help Ann recover her regulator.

 In the process of helping her, his weight belt came loose and dropped to the swim platform behind him. Bill immediately began floating toward the surface, and his weight belt was out of reach before he realized it.

He began struggling to get back to the bottom, but in the process, Bill lost a fin, and his tank came loose from his BC. He ascended all the way to the surface and was unable to descend again.

When he realized Ann was not right behind him, he signaled to the shore for help. Two nearby divers responded quickly, but they did not find Ann for 15 minutes. When they finally located her, she was unconscious, and her regulator was still out of her mouth.

On the surface, the rescuers began resuscitation efforts, but they were unsuccessful. Ann’s autopsy indicated she had drowned.

On the face of it, some might suggest that this dive accident was caused by dive equipment.  The accident was caused by the failure to properly use the equipment and respond to the problem.

In the book Scuba Diving Safety, Dr. George Harpur, medical director of the Tobermory Hyperbaric Facility in Ontario, Canada said,

 “We are not able to document a single case in which equipment failure directly caused a diver’s death or injury. It has been the diver’s response to the problem that results in the pathology.”

Every diver has had a problem with a piece of equipment at one time or another.As the saying goes, “If you haven’t had a problem, you aren’t diving enough.” The key to problem management is to respond quickly and calmly, and then move on. Losing control is the key to making a simple problem escalate into a bigger one.

Bill was growing frustrated with his weight belt, and probably a little nervous. He was so fixated on his problem that he did not see Ann coming toward him.

When she tried to help, his jerky movements knocked her regulator from her mouth. At this point, both divers were having problems, but neither problem was insurmountable. Ann could have moved back, recovered her regulator, and then signaled Bill to stop so she could help him. That did not happen.

A recurring theme in this column is the human reaction of panic.

When panic sets in, so do perceptual narrowing and tunnel vision. This limits your reactions, keeping you from calmly thinking through a problem. Ann and Bill both panicked.

Ann failed to recover her regulator (something every diver learns to do), and then failed to make an emergency ascent to the surface. Instead, she simply froze on the bottom and drowned with a mostly full supply of air on her back.

Bill panicked when he lost his weight belt, and his efforts to get back down to the bottom grew more and more erratic, causing him to lose a fin and dislodge his tank.

Many divers never practice the emergency skills they learned during their initial training. They do not review recovering a lost regulator or removing and replacing their weight belts. Both basic skills could have saved the dive, allowing both divers to continue after a brief interruption. It easily could have turned out as something to laugh about later — just a minor blip.

It is possible that Ann and Bill were using unfamiliar equipment because some of their gear was rented. When that is the case, it is even more important to take a few minutes at the beginning of the dive to review your equipment — and your buddy’s — to make sure you know where everything is located and how it works.

Ann drowned on the bottom of the quarry, with plenty of air in her scuba tank. Drowning does not always mean the person inhaled large quantities of water; often the drowning victim only inhales a teaspoon of water. This causes the larynx to spasm and close, and that involuntary reaction causes suffocation.

The autopsy did not include detailed information on Ann’s lungs, but it is possible that in her panic she inhaled a splash of water and then lost consciousness. If she had had a laryngospasm, it would have made it almost impossible for her to take a breath.

Lessons For Life

1. Practice emergency skills. Take the time to practice emergency skills regularly. This includes mask removal and replacement and regulator recovery. These basic skills can turn a potential disaster into a minor problem that will not end a dive.

2. Be familiar with your equipment. Whether you are diving with something new or with rented gear, be familiar with your equipment, and your buddy’s. Know where the weight buckles are, and how to adjust and release them.

3. Take a breath. When a problem arises, stop for a moment, and take a breath. Think about how to handle the problem, and then act. It could save your life. Lessons For Life: Diver Drowns with Full Tank of Air | Scuba Diving

REMEMBER: There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence.

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Event Calendar 2020

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Greeting the New Year Underwater 2021

Yep, it was that time of year again. On December 31st, an hour or so before the stroke of midnight, several members of the Michigan Underwater Divers (MUD) Club and friends (observing social distancing practices) began their pre-dive rituals in preparation for celebrating the changing of the year in their usual way, by entering the dark, ice-cold waters of one of Michigan’s numerous bodies of water.

This year’s dive was again in the Saint Joseph river off Riverview Park in Niles, Michigan. With only a little snow, ice on the walkways and along the shore, no wind and with the air temp of ~19F, it was almost balmy.

Collectively though the divers had a bit of a challenging dive tonight with the river much lower than last year and having to walk out to deeper water w/o fins. Current was slow but again the visibility was like diving in pea soup.

Shore support was provided by Jake Thar (Niles) and Karen Mann (Bangor) who braved the night travels across the snow and Icey roads to perform as diver surface support for all the participants.

There were 5 divers in the water to begin the dive and most importantly, 5 out. Those diving were: Mary Beth Thar (Niles), Sir Larry Steelman (Niles), Kevin Ailes (Bangor), Amy Ailes (Bangor), Don McAlhany (St. Joseph), It was fun as usual, so maybe come out and join us next year!

The first Day dive of the New Year, January 1st, was completed by Muddy Bob Sweeney at Gilboa Quarry

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Tankful Tuesday

Tankful Tuesday Dive – June 23- Little Paw Paw Lake – Coloma, MI. 18:30 hrs (6:30 PM for others) – We met at the Public Access / boat launch.

To get there from I-94, Exit at 39 and head east on West Center Street, turn left onto North Church Street, thru downtown Coloma and follow “Paw Paw Lake Road” as it parallels Big PPL. Turn left onto Johnston Road (you’ll see the Handy Spot convenience store at the corner) and turn Left on Helen Street. That links up with Lake Drive and the public access parking. (that’s about 3 miles)

Looking to the right you will see the public access parking. If it had been crowded we were going to convoy to Forest Beach on Big PPL.

At the Public Access and boat launch. The sand beach area and the swim area off the beach was very clean and safe for kids. Drop off started at about 6 feet. Dark bottom when getting to deeper water ~25″ but a light makes the difference. Metal detecting not so good BUT grubbing was great! We pretty much had the public access all to ourselves this day with just a little bit of boat traffic. Nice warm day, gentle breeze and the few threatening clouds all passed us by.

Little Paw Paw Lake from the air – Boat Launch
The sandy spot, left center) is the Public Access. The lake is ~90 acres. The deepest point in the lake is 27 feet. Lake turnover time is ~.3 yrs. Boat launch and park at the end of “Helen” road. Heavy weeds in the summer out to 10 feet, bottom to the left of the launch is heavy muck and very dark. When Carp are breeding they sometime bump you if you are in the weeds and in their territory.
Karen, Barb, Kirk and Mac were on hand today. Karen finding the “official Dive” golf ball(s). Kurt & Barb provided shore support.
Like I said, Karen the grubber, did very well and some nice finds were recovered
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Tankful Tuesday

Today’s dive was in Lake Michigan off the North Pier, Tiscornia Park, St, Joseph, Mi.

This was the initial post of this dive: Tuesdays dive is slated to be on the North Pier off Tiscornia Beach “WEATHER PERMITTING” which mean zero to very minimal wave action. There is a $9 (weekdays) charge to park at Tiscornia Park. The alternate dive site will be (Big) Paw Paw Lake (Watervliet) at the Forest Beach park.

I will visit the North Pier Tuesday in the early afternoon to determine wave action and diving conditions. “IF” in my opinion there is wave heights that do not meet what I consider the safest for intermediate divers I will immediately post on the club site that we will be diving our alternate site “Forest Beach”.

IF the pier conditions are good, those interested in consolidating gear and sharing a ride to the park can gather at the Whirlpool parking lot on Upton Drive prior to 1830 hrs (6:30 PM). Look for a dive flag!

It’s a long walk from the parking lot to the mid-point on the pier so its suggested that you bring a dolly cart or wagon to haul your gear. For those not diving just coming down and providing shore support is always appreciated.

The following pictures tell all about the dive. You missed a good one 🙂

Social Distancing before during and after the dive..
Water level is high as seen here on the lake side midpoint of the North Pier.
Karen M somewhere along the pier wall – visibility anywhere from 5 to 10 feet.
Treasures found included severay nice dive masks and even this skateboard in good working order. Lots of fish, very very few gobies seen and very low levels of zebra mussle infestation. Big surprise on both these items.
My face to face greeter when surfacing at the end of the dive.
Sun just setting as we finished loading our wet gear and departing the park.
Had to get that final sunset shot from the bluffs in downtown St. Joseph, MI. on the way home.
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Tankful Tuesday

This weeks pickup TT day dive was at the DNR Launch on Lake Cora in Decatur, MI.

Tankful Tuesday went great! 7 arrived/ 6 went out to dive. Brian & Simon came out a little early and did a boat dive just off the launch ramp area.

A few divers went straight out and made it to a max of 57feet with visibility between 5 & 10 feet. Water temperature was 48F at depth and considerably warmer in the shallows of less than 10 feet. Mack stayed shallow metal detecting the Resort Beach next to the launch.

Lots of large fish were seen, some close and personnel when the vis went low and surprisingly no trash and no cans or bottles to be found. Everyone had a good time and all practiced that critical social distancing.

West Public Access – Lake Cora
Boat Launch circle at the DNR launch- Lake Cora
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Tankful Tuesday – 1st

This years weekly dives were switched from Thirsty Thursdays to Tankful Tuesdays and began June 9th. We are getting in a late start this year due to COID concerns.

With that said, this summers First Tankful Tuesday dive went well. And yes there was rain, but we figured we were getting wet anyway, what’s the difference? There were 4 of us out diving tonight Paw Paw Lake at Forest Beach Park located in Watervliet, Mi.

The Water temp was 55 degrees with an average visibility between 5 to 10 feet. And yes, treasures were found 😊

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Ecology Dive – Riverview Park, Niles, Michigan

September 22, 2018:

The 2018 Ecology Dive held at Riverview Park, Niles, Michigan  was a huge success.

It was sponsored by the Michigan U/W Divers (MUD) club and Wolfs Marine.

There were two divers come from Detroit and one from Grand Rapids that joined our Muddies in the event. There were 24 divers,  shore support and a bunch of spectators. The weather was beautiful but a little chilly in the morning until the sun warmed things up in the afternoon.

In fact, with the support and donations the club had this year “every participant” and all shore support individuals was awarded a prize.

Jim Scholz, from Dowagiac, was the grand prize winner for having found the “Most Trash” with 73 countable items, Mary Beth Thar (from Nile’s Mi & MUD Club President) won the “Largest/ Biggest” by hauling in a large rusted sign AND a big tractor trailer tire rim, Skyler Daisy from Hartford, won “Heaviest” by lugging in a very heavy and rusted grate, and last but not least was Darrin Jillison (Buchanan) won the “Most Unusual” with a small cross pendant surrounded by about a hundred or so diamond chips. Here are a couple of pictures of trash removed by the divers.

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August 11: This Years MUD Club Picnic

Well, the Michigan Underwater Divers (MUD) club could not have asked for better picnic weather than we had today! We hope that those who could not make it this year will be at the one next year. But with that said, be aware that we cannot guarantee the great weather we had today. No one kayaked today, but a few hardy souls took to the river and some bottle treasures were found, in spite of the very low visibility, river banks snag hazards, and fast currents.

Steaks & brats on this brill. Chicken and potatoes on the other.

Getting ready to begin the feast.

The pipe is almost covered, the current is strong, but notice Jim’s flag in their honey hole on the opposite side of the river.

Big John getting ready to challenge the river.

Jason getting ready to give his new dry suit a try.

New signage since this year’s flooding.

While some are diving or walking the river side paths, some are just cooling it in the shade.

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Wooden Ships and Iron Men

Copyright 2018 by Don McAlhany

Photo taken by Don McAlhany of the Friends Goodwill (South Haven, MI)

This Memorial Day weekend it was a hazy day off shore and this picture I took of the Friends Good Will reminds me of the days gone by and of wooden ships and iron men.

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