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Advice for investigating relatively undove lake 1.5 hrs from St. Louis

Discussion in 'Mid-West Region' started by murdrcycle, Jun 14, 2009.

  1. murdrcycle

    murdrcycle Barracuda

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: St. Louis, MO USA
    206
    2
    0
    There is a private lake (5 miles of shoreline) 1.5 hours from St. Louis which has captured my curiosity. Apparently this river valley used to be home to a number of fish farms before a damn was built in the late '40s and all was submerged.

    I am a novice and have absolutely no experience in this type of thing. However, I would like to do some research to see if I can find a map of the valley prior to the flooding, find the depth in areas that there might be buildings to see, and then do some dives to see if I can find anything.

    Does anyone have any experience with this type of thing?
     
  2. fleep

    fleep Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Saint Louis (err, St. Louiee, Screwy!)
    78
    1
    8
    hrmmm...sounds interesting

    I would start by contacting the local library-see if they have any resources (documents / old-timers /town historians who remember) you could bring to bare. Next step would be to try to gain legal access to the lake - perhaps through a resident or a lake caretaker who would believe that you are trying to 'help' the community in some way - e.g. biological/water quality/historical survey. Third step would be to invite fleep to joinya on some exploratory dives hehe! ¿PM me with the location if you would like and I would be happy to help you with some research?
     
  3. murdrcycle

    murdrcycle Barracuda

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: St. Louis, MO USA
    206
    2
    0
    Actually I made a lot of progress today, albeit to what appears to be a dead-end. First, I do have lake access. The location is Sunnen Lake just outside of Potosi. It is home to an employee-getaway for Sunnen employees and retirees, YMCA's Trout Lodge, and a Boy Scout camp. Scuba diving is not prohitibed, but not expressly condoned either.

    Mr. Sunnen bought the land and paid for the dam construction in the 40's before donating it to the YMCA some years ago, with the agreement that the Sunnen employees retreat and Boy Scout camp remain. I contacted the YMCA who put me in touch with the proprieter of the lake who was in charge of it during it's construction. He send me pictures and a history. Unfortunately, all buildings were removed and the entire bottom smoothed out before they flooded it. He assured me that there is nothing really to see down there and sent pictures of the construction which confirmed it. The max depth is about 50 feet, and the majority of the lake is under 20. Too bad, but it was quite exciting for a while! At least now I know.
     
  4. ResQDiver

    ResQDiver Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Ste Genevieve, Missouri
    91
    0
    0
    hmmm someone say diving
     
  5. SteveC

    SteveC Photographer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: St. Louis Mo
    607
    7
    18
    My dad used to talk about diving Sunnen back in the 60's, but I don't remember anything specific about it. I wonder what the vis is like these days. Next time I talk to him, I'll pick his brian for info.
     
  6. SteveC

    SteveC Photographer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: St. Louis Mo
    607
    7
    18
    I got a chance to talk to my dad last night, so I asked him about Sunnen Lake. He confirms that there is nothing but tree stumps down there. He said the vis was about 10’. I think that he dove it mainly because it was close to St. Louis.
    He did have one interesting story. On one occasion he and his dive buddies came across a 6 pack of beer (5 pack as one was missing) evidently dropped by a fishermen and found half sticking out of the mud. They brought it to the surface and immediately consumed their new found booty.
     
  7. nagel

    nagel Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Knob Noster Missouri
    481
    24
    18
    My guess it was way past its "born on" date.

    Snagel
     

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