10/01/2010(Fri) No.1 - Dead Coon[Florida]

Diver : Michael Clay
Dive Master :
Buddy : Billy Fowler
D.Service :
Weather : Sunny
Temp. : 82 Fahrenheit
Ave.w.temp : 70 Fahrenheit
Min.w.temp : 70 Fahrenheit
Diving Suit : Dry Suit
Inner Wear : Polartec
Weight : 0 Lbs
Tank Material : Steel 85's
Equipment : Cave Gear
S.I.Time : 00:00:00
Time In : 11:58:00
Time Out : 12:53:00
Dive Time : 00:55:00
Ave.Depth : 38 ft
Max.Depth : 62 ft
Safety Stop.Depth : ft
Safety Stop.Time : min
Tank Capacity : 218 Cu/Ft
Pres. In : 3400 PSI
Pres. Out. : 2800 PSI
Air Consum. : .61 CU/FT
Visibility H. : 60 ft
Visibility V. : 60 ft
Access1 : Shore
Access2 : Spring
Rating : ****
Dive Number : 379
Total Time : 309:06
Dive Type : Cave Dive

This was a cave in the Withlakoochee river that Billy and Joe found on thier last trip out to cave country. They named it Dead Coon, since there was a bloated dead raccoon at the entrance when they found it.

We parked the van, took down the canoe, loaded it with gear and took off up the river. We found the landmark and tied off to the trees. We geared up and headed in.

Billy took a stage bottle and two 85's and I just took my two 85's. At the entrance, you go through a rabbit hole in the side of the river, then down through two tight restrictions. I watched Billy get stuck and fight his way through. After he got through, I saw there was a little bigger gap to the right of where he entered, so I followed that path. My stomach was still in the sand while my back was against the rock, but with a little kicking and shimmying, I made it through both restrictions. Billy hung up his stage bottle and we proceeded into the cave.

The cave was small, but quite passable. Beautiful clear water and white walls! There were a couple of tight turns, but nothing difficult. There was some old dilapidated line in the cave, so we were laying new line as we went. Billy stopped because he was having equalization problems and handed me the reel. I ran the line for the next couple hundred feet, until the reel ran out. Billy tied on a new reel and I told him to continue with it.

We got about 800 - 900 feet back and decided to turn. Billy was getting close to thirds. He turned and gave me the signal. We worked our way slowly out of the cave.

Beautiful cave! It reminded me a lot of Madachuck. One of my new favorites. Too bad it's river access only.