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Old    Louis Teague (loux2)      Join Date: May 2004       08-14-2006, 10:45 AM Reply   
We had a terrible experience Saturday afternoon on the delta. We were about a mile past the Discovery Bay bridge. I think there is a place up there called Rivers End. Anyways, there was some black pipes tied together to mark off the area where the pump stations are. I was about 50 yards away and was trying to put my board on. The next thing I new I was getting pulled under the pipes. I had no idea the current was that strong near those pipes. I hit my head on the pipe and it made me a little disorientated. Fortunatley my crew was able to get close enough to pull me out of the water. The current was the strongest I have ever experienced out on the delta. In just seconds I drifted at least 50 yards. Lesson learned, stay away from the black pipes.
Old    FoxrepDC (foxrepdc)      Join Date: Oct 2005       08-14-2006, 11:12 AM Reply   
That's crazy! Seems like something that will pull you under and move you 50 yards in only a few seconds should be marked, and/or roped off.
Old    Louis Teague (loux2)      Join Date: May 2004       08-14-2006, 11:45 AM Reply   
It is roped off. The pipes are attached to the rope to mark of the area. The current pulled me right to the roped off area. Then started pulling me under the pipes that were attached to the ropes. Looking back on it had I gone under the pipes I would have probly popped up on the other side, but would have had to swim quickly to shore before I got sucked into the aquaduct. I was wondering if anyone else has experienced this? I think they need to do a better job of marking the area. I also should have done a better job of paying attention.
Old    Rod McInnis (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       08-14-2006, 12:08 PM Reply   
Just to make sure we are clear: I believe the "pipes" he is referring to are floating barriers to keep boats out of the channel that leads to the basin that the pumps for the California Aquaduct pump out of.

Had he continued he may have had an interesting ride but I am pretty sure he wouldn't have gotten chewed up in anything.

There are lots of places where similar situations can occur. Many small lakes have a spillway that is roped off with nothing more than a rope with floats on it, like what a large swimming pool might use to mark the deep end. It is possible for a drifing boat to go over the spillway!

Another interesting spot on the Delta is near Walnut Grove, the cross delta canal. There are large flood gates that can be closed to isolate the Sacramento River from a large portion of the delta. This gates have only about 9 feet of clearance, and turing peak tide currents the water can be flowing pretty fast! There have been houseboats that have been trapped by the current in there and have been sucked through the gates.......
Old    Louis Teague (loux2)      Join Date: May 2004       08-14-2006, 12:18 PM Reply   
Rod you are correct. Thank you for clarifying. It is easy to get comfortable and forget what a dangerous place the delta can be.
Old    Austin Hegarty (thirdgear)      Join Date: Jul 2005       08-14-2006, 12:30 PM Reply   
We had a similar situation occur on Lake Austin a year or two ago involving a boat. Down at the dam between Lake Austin and Town Lake (which is now marked off with a floaty-pool rope) there used to not be a marked off keep-out area and LCRA would flash a light on the dam for a bit to warn boaters that one of the gates was opening. As I understand it, some guy was down there in an old boat that had belonged to his family for a long time and was recently restored - engine decided to kaput in the area. One of the floodgates happened to be open, and before he knew it, it had sucked him and his vessel too close to the dam to be saved. People at the restaurants on shore saw and the LCRA was notified but they couldn't shut the gates/fish him off the vessel from above in time - he and his boat went through the gate and over the dam - it's not a giant dam, but still large, maybe 30-40 feet? Boat was gone (obviously), but dude got spun around and spat out on the shore 100 yards down or so in front of the UT Married Student Housing complex. All his clothes were stripped off, and he had to stumble up to a house holding a tube over himself in order to get someone to call for help.

As far as I know, this guy was pretty much unharmed - amazing story. If anyone else on here has any corrections/additions to it, I'd love to hear them. Obviously things are a lot safer there now as a result of the floating pool marker...
Old    Josh B (joshugan)      Join Date: Apr 2005       08-14-2006, 4:19 PM Reply   
Austin, that is a wild story and it would be awesome to hear more about it.

Here at Canyon Lake in Az, there are large floating barriers to keep boats away from the dam. When I was younger it was just the pool lane seperation type barrier but now they are really pretty big and sturdy looking.

Anyway, I put my boat in a slip at Canyon Lake this year (best boating investment yet) and I got to get to know some of the other marina members. One of them told me how one night he, his wife, and another marina member and his wife all got pretty drunk. They were out speeding around on the other member's boat when they hit the floating barrier and jumped it. The boat was messed up and taking on water. There's no shore line behind the barrier and so they jumped the barrier again to get back to shore. I guess the boat was pretty mangled and he said the experience sobered him up fast.
Old    Myke D (breakz77)      Join Date: Mar 2003       08-14-2006, 4:55 PM Reply   
Louis,

Last year we had the same experience in the same place as you... except that my buddy did get pulled all the way under and eventually popped out the other side...when he did get pulled under and we didn't see him come up my other friend jumped in to go after him (without a vest since it was a panic) and got stuck for a second under the pipes due to the weeds growing in the water under them. Luckily everything turned out ok and I got both of them back in the boat. I now never pull anyone in that area unless they are an experienced rider and know just to chill when going past it. VERY DANGEROUS AREA THAT NEEDS TO HAVE MORE POSTINGS!
Old     (midwesty)      Join Date: Aug 2003       08-14-2006, 5:40 PM Reply   
so just curious, did you have a coast guard approved vest on ?would it have made a difference?
Old    Myke D (breakz77)      Join Date: Mar 2003       08-14-2006, 6:44 PM Reply   
My friend did have a cga vest on and it did not make a difference as far as him being pulled under.. the current seems to always be real strong in that section, at least from what I've experienced.
Old     (midwesty)      Join Date: Aug 2003       08-14-2006, 7:05 PM Reply   
well, what i was getting at is, was there a struggle to get to the surface even with the CG approved vest or would someone with a non approved vest been in more serious trouble?
Old    Myke D (breakz77)      Join Date: Mar 2003       08-14-2006, 7:10 PM Reply   
Honestly I don't think it would of mattered but I wasn't the one who was pulled under so it's hard to say
Old    Dennis (denystaucd)      Join Date: Feb 2003       08-14-2006, 7:19 PM Reply   
The water velocities at the pump station can get above 11 ft/s...which is ripping. The real problem is after the pipes (to keep boats away) are trashrack for debris. If you get stuck on those underwater it wouldn't be good.

A good idea is to tell everyone on the boat not to crash near the 2 pump stations every time you pass them, to make sure everyone has a safe time. People on my boat are tired of hear not to crash near the pumps...lol...

dc
Old    Louis Teague (loux2)      Join Date: May 2004       08-15-2006, 9:41 AM Reply   
Myke,
I cannot believe they do not post signs and mark it off better. I had on a cga vest and was getting sucked under. My wife jumped in to help me becuase she panicked and made it worse. We will never board in that area again.
Old    Myke D (breakz77)      Join Date: Mar 2003       08-15-2006, 1:29 PM Reply   
It is amazing that they don't post any signs there and make it more aware. But I have sceen a lot of stuff that should be marked off and never is.

Glad you guys are safe though and the best thing to do is to inform as many people as you can about it.
Old    Austin Hegarty (thirdgear)      Join Date: Jul 2005       08-15-2006, 1:48 PM Reply   
For those interested...
Here's a link to the story I mentioned yesterday. 30-40 foot drop? Try 60 feet.

http://www.news8austin.com/content/your_news/?SecID=278&ArID=132754
Old    Adrenaline Junkie (kgoings)      Join Date: Apr 2005       08-17-2006, 2:48 PM Reply   
Austin that is freaky! I have always been freaked out by dams and spillways. I googled Tom Miller Dam

dam

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