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Old 05-16-2022, 04:37 PM   #1
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Help needed identifying WA boat in South Sound

I came home 2 days ago to find, in the bay below our house:

A large man in distress in the water with no flotation aid, a large golden doodle/poodle with a flotation aid swimming around the man, a diver swimming in a drysuit, a fuel slick and a floating debris field about 50' in diameter. In the middle of this was an aluminum work boat named "SAND DOLLAR" about 25' long with a drop bows (Landing craft style) with one man on board. He rescued the dog, then the man. Eventually the diver also got on board having retrieved most of the floating debris and they took off without marking what I assume to be a sunk boat. Water depth at low tide in this area ranges from 10-20' I took video just after the rescued man was pulled aboard and on the video can clearly hear the rescued man calling out to the diver "I've lost everything....My boat....my clothes..." This leads me to think that the lost boat is not a small skiff, but something large enough to live on and definitely a nav hazard.

SAND DOLLAR is the boat I am trying to locate/identify. I believe the logo on the pilothouse door is the logo for the WA State Parks system but I can't be sure.

Anyone familiar with Sand Dollar please contact me.
~Alan

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Old 05-16-2022, 04:53 PM   #2
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Did you call the WA parks?

There is also a FB group called "Puget Sound Boating"
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Old 05-16-2022, 06:56 PM   #3
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Did you call the WA parks?

There is also a FB group called "Puget Sound Boating"
Thanks. I have been trying to reach someone in WA parks with any knowledge. No luck so far.
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Old 05-18-2022, 07:47 AM   #4
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Is that right there in gig harbor? Where countless boats anchor all summer? ( myself included)
I would find it hard to believe a boat would sink unreported, especially right there, but I guess it could happen.
There’s always a group of live aboard boaters using the city dock and anchoring out, probably one of those.
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Old 05-18-2022, 09:15 AM   #5
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Bmarler: Wollochet Bay, just south of Gig Harbor bay (through the Narrows and turn right).
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Old 05-18-2022, 09:55 AM   #6
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Old 05-18-2022, 11:26 AM   #7
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Bmarler: Wollochet Bay, just south of Gig Harbor bay (through the Narrows and turn right).
got it, i know exactly where that's at. hope you get some info on that. needless to say, it could be real trouble for you or others if they left the wreck down there unmarked.
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Old 05-18-2022, 07:48 PM   #8
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......the rest of the story

Well now we know the rest of the story.......

Finally we have solved the mystery of the sunken boat, or rather a neighbor's mom did.

She was talking to some divers who were in the bay cleaning off buoys and mentioned the newly sunken boat by our place. That's when the diver chuckled and said there was no sunken boat, it was him.

He had recently purchased a boat from the parks department at auction and was on his way to the bay with a friend and a diver and his dog, to do their buoy cleaning when his dog needed to go to the bathroom.

So with his new drop-front boat he decided to let his dog off on our beach to go to the bathroom. He proceeded to drop the front of the boat, but it dropped too far and as the dog was coming in it started to take on water.

At this point he says "I hit it in reverse real quickly and lost my dog, buddies, and some supplies off the front of the boat. I got everyone back in, had a laugh, and we were off on our way."

So no sunken boat, just some bruised egos.

He got a call yesterday from the Parks dept ordering him to remove their decals from the boat (somehow they neglected to do that prior to sale).

All's well that ends well I suppose. However our water temperature is 48 Degrees F and the guy that was hauled back on board was laid out for 5 minutes without moving. This could easily have been so much worse.

Thanks to all that responded and especially to my neighbor's son in law who spent 3 air tanks diving a grid across the bay yesterday and today searching for the phantom boat.
~A
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Old 05-19-2022, 01:06 AM   #9
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Wow nice little mystery. Grew up water skiing right there. Glad it wasn’t a real sinking. Off topic those aluminum pilot house landing craft state parks boats are pretty sweet utility boats. Never thought about getting an old one. Huh.
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