Rock hopping... not a good idea for jetski's

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Rock hopping... not a good idea for jetski's

Post  Ducky on Sat Jan 09 2010, 20:56

Hi there team... sorry I haven't been around much of late, and after moving to Tauranga fishing has unfortunately taken a back step in my schedule as finding a new job has been priority.

I have however been able to get out on the water a couple of times, more recently down here in Taupo where I have temporary work for a few weeks, but that is where the fun ended for me on new years day.

Heading out onto Lake Taupo a few friends and I had decided to go biscuiting for the afternoon, and I was to ride the ski from Acacia Bay round to Okuda Bay and meet the others there. On arrival everyone decided to swim across to a rock formation popular by 'jumpers' and swimmers alike, only to have three of them tire and need the ski to cling to while resting... if this wasn't enough they had all left their clothes etc back on the other rocks from which they were swimming from... no doubt you will realize that this is beginning to look bad, and I was nothing short of concerned at the fact 'their' ideas of a day out were severely limited in areas of common sense!

Out of concern and personal safety I offered to run them 2 at a time over to the beach where they could rest, and on doing so the weather also began to change, producing a 1 meter swell up onto the beach. It was while idling into the beach that I somehow collided with a rock, that smashed my intake grate, and the resulting pieces or metal denting my prop in two places.

With no option but to try starting the ski I ran back over to the others who were still floating in the water, cold and tired, and insisted that I pull them back to the original rocks where they could leave to go to the cars... on doing so my passenger was pulling in the ropes from the biscuits, and failed to notice the excess amounts in the water... you guessed it... with a grind my ski stopped with one rope wrapped around the drive shart...

So picture this... A damaged ski, rope wrapped around its drive shaft being washed up onto the rocks in a now 1.5 meter swell... 2 people in the water struggling to get grip as they are now pounded against the rocks, neither one confident swimmers, but both severely cold and tired, and the other two 'swimmers' now stuck on a beach in the changing weather with no knowledge that we were unable to pick them up.

Long story short I was able to flag down a passing boat and eventually was able to free the rope from the drive shaft with the use of a knife (always keep one on ya guys!!), and the other boat assisted in picking up the other two stranded on the beach further round. We all made it back in one piece, but I have to be honest and say that feeling responsible for 5 other lives with no ability to control the situation was one of the scariest feelings I have ever felt... it could have gone seriously wrong so easily... thankfully it didn't!

Jetskis are great, but trying to co ordinate so many people as they put themselves into harms way is scary stuff... I honestly didn't think that I would have had to 'babysit' them all when they were grown adults, but it goes to show that you can never be too careful around water. I will never do this again... if people wanting to biscuit can not physically and safely get themselves to the beach by themselves, then they will not going out with me... the ski can be a great rescue vehicle, but is not designed for transporting numerous people and their belongings... guess that is why it is called a Personal Water Craft!

Luckily for me that day and being safety minded I had 2 spare life jackets in the front, along with my cell phone, spare jackets and several waterproof tops... without them I wonder just how bad the day may have ended.

So its back to Tauranga on Tuesday to see the Seadoo dealer and assess the damage... anything from $500 to $1500 depending on what they find... insurance is $1000 excess so not sure if this will be an option just yet but will use it if I need to. Sadly if I can not secure a job very soon, the ski will be going... not keen to keep paying out with no finances to support the hobby... may just have to tag along on the back of Andrews ski for a bit (lol)...

I am currently working for Taupo Christian Camp and there is a chance that I may have a full time position being offered in the next two weeks... if this happens the ski will be staying as I will have succeeded in acquiring a stable income.. keep your fingers crossed for me guys!

Take care out there on the ocean guys...

Number of posts : 138
PWC : Seadoo GTX
Age : 44
Location : Tauranga
Job/hobbies : Jetski, kayaking, fishing, computers, mountain biking...
Humor : Very much!
Registration date : 2008-10-17

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Re: Rock hopping... not a good idea for jetski's

Post  softbaiter on Sun Jan 10 2010, 15:48

Ah dude, Major Bummer. It ended well at least, Great example of how things can go from good to bad. I have a dive knive strapped to me arm as part of my kit just in case of such a situation with the rope

Number of posts : 517
PWC : Yammie FX140 fishing machine.
Best fish landed on your ski : 9lb Snap
Age : 40
Location : In the water / Clarks Beach
Job/hobbies : IT System Admin / fixer of anything with button and plug, servers to coffee machines
Humor : haha
Registration date : 2008-11-20

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