Posted by: mcjangles | June 17, 2007

6/10/07 – Ayuruoca (Oil Wreck)

6/10/2007 – Independence II trip to the Oil Wreck (Ayuruoca)

Today I joined the group from Village Divers on a trip to what is probably one of my favorite wrecks – the Oil Wreck. The Ayuruoca is a large freighter sitting upright and intact in 2 separate pieces in the Mud Hole of New Jersey. The mud bottom is at about 175fsw but the main deck is at ~150 and in areas the superstructure comes up to as high as 120fsw. The best part is that even though it is in deeper water it is still a short boat ride and we were on site well under an hour even with some slightly bouncy seas.


I splashed in with John Yurga to tie in. Coming down the shot line (which landed in the mud) we passed right down the side of the wreck which is covered in anemones, and it was like descending down a beautifully carpeted 30’ wall. The visibility was a dark 10’, which isn’t too bad for this wreck. We secured the tie at about 135’ near a railing which made navigation pretty easy. Cruising down slightly off deck level I noticed that the railing was bent in more, almost like the wreck caved in towards the middle some and that some of the deck appeared to have opened up. My heart skipped a beat when I saw through one rust hole a large piece of porcelain that looked like a nice bowl, but as soon as I grabbed I realized it was just a broken off toilet still attached to the tiled floor Crying or Very sad . I got as far as one of the trucks sitting on the deck (part of the cargo when she went down) and decided to head back before I got myself thoroughly lost. Back near the tie I found an entrance to a room and took a quick peak inside. There was a brass backing plate from a porthole still in place but it probably wont be going anywhere for quite some time. There is so much to see on this wreck that is really unbelievable.

Back on board we compared notes and decided we were on the bow section near the bridge, which may have collapsed some over the winter. One buddy team surfaced with one of the buddies having a large rust spot on his hood and reported getting clonked in the head by falling debris. This seemed to give supporting evidence to the collapse theory until they said they were OUTSIDE the wreck when the debris came raining down on them. This mystery was solved when Frankie reported finding a “loose” porthole backing plate still on a small beam that required some “man-handling”, but he was unable to float it with his bag. With a set of directions Capt Dan and Mark Clark were able to go in and finish the job and within minutes a lift bag popped up with a nice backing plate that still had one dog on it. All in all it was another great weekend out and under the Atlantic.

Capt’s Clark and Bartone with porthole


Capt’s Clark and Pellegrino with porthole


(photos courtesy M. Clark)

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