The Artificial Reef Society of BC needs your help.
The HMCS Annapolis is being dismantled and made safe and clean, to be used as an artificial reef and dive site.
The majority of the work is being done by volunteers and there is lots of work left to be done.
I spent last Sunday helping out, quite an interesting experience.
After meeting in Horsehoe Bay I hopped on a boat for the ride out to the ship. About 45 minutes later we were there, the HMCS Annapolis!
After a quick briefing we were set to work. I guess I was on the lucky side, having brought my own tools...I got to work outside on the deck in the sunshine. There were a pile of fittings - pipes and hoses and unidentifiable stuff - that needed to be taken apart, right down to nuts and bolts.
It was interesting, a bit of a challenge to figure out how to get most of these things apart. A vice would have been really nice, but, oh well....
I met three other guys, we had a good time, telling jokes and stories.
For lunch break we assembled on the Helicopter deck and sat in the sunshine.
There were about 12 of us altogether including three girls. They got onto the subject of how short they were - I don't know why... - and when they stated their heights: 5'1", 5"1 1/2", 5'0" - the two organizers got gleams in their eyes and at the same time, looked at each other and said "Half Deck!"
A bit of an explanation later - there is an area where the ceiling is about 5'6" high, too low for most men to work comfortably but perfect for a 5' and very little else person. The girls were really happy to be able to help out doing something really usefull and went at it with big smiles on their faces.
After lunch we finished off the rest of the fittings and then went inside to work on some of the rooms. Also quite easy, removing boxes from walls and a few plates here and there. The finishing job was to dissamble a great big fresh air blower. This thing weighed about 100 pounds and was about head height with about 200 bolts holding it all together. About an hour later my partner and I had it off and cleaned up, the end of a succesful day.
So here's the continuing part. There are, as told to me, about a thousand 8 1/2 minutes jobs to be done and several hundred 1/2 hour jobs.
The ARSBC needs help. I am hoping to get about 8 or 10 fellow riders together for a day helping out. A free ride to the ship, a tour of the ship, a dozen different things to do, a BBQ lunch and a great time.
What you would need: Work Boots, Flashlight (one of those headlights for hiking would work great), Work Gloves. Good to bring also, a few rags to clean your hands, tools.
We can do this pretty well any day, I am thinking a Saturday or Sunday - especially a rainy day - cause we can work inside...can't ride anyways right?
This is a great experience, a chance to be a part of history, a chance to do something good for the environment and the Dive Community.
Thanks for reading this and I hope to have a fun day with friends!