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New Jersey Scuba Diving

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New Jersey Scuba Diving

"Riggy Barge" ( Helen )

Manasquan Chart

Sea Raven
One of my favorite photo subjects - yet another Sea Raven

Type:
shipwreck, schooner barge
Built:
1911
Specs:
1285 tons
Sunk:
Thursday January 12, 1922
Depth:
75 ft

For many years the real name of this big wooden wreck was not known, and it was referred to as the "Rig Barge" or "Riggy Barge". It has since been discovered that is the three-masted schooner barge Helen.

This is a good dive if you like to swim - wooden walls protruding from the fine sand are easily followed for quite a long distance. At one end of the wreck is a large post sticking up all by itself, while at the other end is an interesting collection of machinery: a small boiler, steam winch & chain, etc. The wreck is popular with lobstermen, who's traps are all around - no fair filching their catch though, they have a right to make a living too! The traps are interesting in themselves, since they often contain many other creatures besides lobsters, all seeking shelter.

As you can see from the pictures, the visibility on this wreck was quite good, when at the same time the nearby Delaware was completely socked in. This wreck is very similar to the Cadet.

Shipwreck Riggy barge
A big Conger Eel resting in an abandoned lobster trap. It took off like a
shot when I tried to flush it out for a better picture.

Shipwreck Riggy barge
There are dozens of this sort of shallow rectangular hole all
along the wreck. Most have only crabs like this, but a good Jersey
diver will check them all ...

Shipwreck Riggy barge
... and here's why.

Shipwreck Riggy barge
The old anchor chain still winds up into a hawse-pipe.

Shipwreck Riggy barge
A large piece of machinery.

Shipwreck Riggy barge
A large towing bit fallen over in the sand.


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Disclaimer:

I make no claim as to the accuracy, validity, or appropriateness of any information found in this website. I will not be responsible for the consequences of any action that is based upon information found here. Scuba diving is an adventure sport, and as always, you alone are responsible for your own safety and well being.

Copyright © 1996-2016 Rich Galiano
unless otherwise noted

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