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Old 08-10-2010, 19:13   #1
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Challenge: Cutting a Channel in Coral Reef

I am reading a blog of some sailors who got washed onto a reef back in 1979. The boat got lifted by big swells and ended up on the other side ... with no way out.

But where there is will ... With the most primitive tools, they did cut a 30 meter long channel in the reef, it took them slightly over 2 months in 45 degrees centigrade plus climes of the Red Sea.

So much for pushing the button of your EPIRB in the pre-EPIRB era.

barnie
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Old 08-10-2010, 19:42   #2
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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
I am reading a blog of some sailors who got washed onto a reef back in 1979. The boat got lifted by big swells and ended up on the other side ... with no way out.

But where there is will ... With the most primitive tools, they did cut a 30 meter long channel in the reef, it took them slightly over 2 months in 45 degrees centigrade plus climes of the Red Sea.

So much for pushing the button of your EPIRB in the pre-EPIRB era.

barnie
Before going over Shackleton's escapades, I was jaw-on-the-floor impressed by all of this stuff. Now, I understand (and accept) that there are simply harder caliber people in this world than most of us, and those people don't take 'no' as an acceptable answer to pretty much anything.

Some of those stories are amazing.
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Old 08-10-2010, 19:47   #3
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Try that today say in Tonga an see what kind of fine you will pay...Yikes..
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Old 08-10-2010, 20:09   #4
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Try that today say in Tonga an see what kind of fine you will pay...Yikes..
True enough. At some point though, it comes down to everything you own on that boat getting dashed on the rocks, or chiseling your way out of the confined area, which will cause measurable (but certainly not catastrophic) damage to the local ecosystem.

It's a hard decision to make no matter which side of the issue you're on.
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Old 08-10-2010, 21:29   #5
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It's a money thing, and money usually wins..it might take a hundred years for the reef to repair itself, but rich guys only have so much time to "do their thing". Get over yourself. If you crash your boat, take your lumps and leave the stage.
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Old 08-10-2010, 22:08   #6
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It's a money thing, and money usually wins..it might take a hundred years for the reef to repair itself, but rich guys only have so much time to "do their thing". Get over yourself. If you crash your boat, take your lumps and leave the stage.
That's one side of the issue, albeit framed in an incendiary and cavalier fashion. Obviously it's an emotional issue for many, which is why I said it's a hard decision.
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Old 09-10-2010, 06:23   #7
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Is that cut still there? That should have opened a lagoon for many to take advantage of
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Old 09-10-2010, 08:10   #8
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Is that cut still there? That should have opened a lagoon for many to take advantage of
s/v Czarny Diament's comeback after 32-year-long voyage!

I bet it is still there. But pre-EPIRB is also pre-GPS, so we can only guess from the story where it is exactly.

I google earthed yesterday but found nothing (I only have the google maps here, maybe it is better to look at the proper google earth for this?)

The boat is 2.7 meter deep and over 4.0 meter beam, so the channel is probably fine for most modern day cruisers.

The bad news is it is the Red Sea - the area where one will not likely want to stop and enjoy the views ... ;-(

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Old 09-10-2010, 08:20   #9
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It's a money thing, and money usually wins..it might take a hundred years for the reef to repair itself, but rich guys only have so much time to "do their thing". Get over yourself. If you crash your boat, take your lumps and leave the stage.
And that's exactly what the yanks and kiwis that sailed with the boat did. But there was also a German student who refused to leave and who participated in the adventure. There was also a French sailor who sailed his yacht to and fro and delivered fresh water, fabricated a new rudder, and who cooked for them at times too!

Afterwards, the north americans called the rescue 'a wonder'. And this is how legends start to circulate - made by those who do not participate. For those on the boat there was no wonder - just two months of cutting thru the reef, chest deep in the water full of sharks and stinging jelly fish.

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Old 09-10-2010, 08:37   #10
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A coral reef is immeasurably more valuable than a boat. This was a bad decision.
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Old 09-10-2010, 09:35   #11
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If you can find a copy of "Sitting Ducks", there is an amazing story
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Old 09-10-2010, 22:39   #12
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A coral reef is immeasurably more valuable than a boat. This was a bad decision.
Judge slowly. In 1979 were you aware of how much dmage would be done by cutting your way through a reef? I wasn't - I even bought coral jewlry.
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Old 10-10-2010, 06:25   #13
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Although weve all made mistakes, based upon our ignorance; they remain mistakes.
Fortunately, most of us seem to be learning from them.
In 1979, I would probably not been outraged, either. Id have still been wrong.
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Old 10-10-2010, 06:45   #14
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In the 60's, when treasure hunting was less complicated by regulation, we regularly flew the Bermuda reef platform in floatplanes, at about 1000ft, looking for reasonably straight lines originating from the deep water drop-off. Projecting toward shallower water, these were sometimes the keel tracks across the reef. Difficult to see by swimming, but quite clear from height.
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Old 11-10-2010, 13:43   #15
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A coral reef is immeasurably more valuable than a boat. This was a bad decision.
This can be said only by someone with fully insured boat.

Those guys had no insurance, and it was 1979.

It was a decision YOU do not like. And that's OK.

Given the amount of pollution made in China it is a BAD decision to buy anything Chinese. Now go look through your stuff and then tell me how bad you are.

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