Friday, April 11, 2008

Another Impressive Spanish galleon Santa Margarita Treasure find.


The KeyWest Citizen has a story about a recent find of 16,184 Pearls on the Santa Margarita Wreck...
When living in the Florida Keys I had the opportunity to work with the Mel Fisher team on both the Margarita and Atocha wrecks as a salvage diver and crewman. I was able to dive with the team several times when the Sportfishing season was slow and had several friends and divers who were permanent team members at the time...

The Magruder was the boat we worked on and were at the wrecksites for 5 to 7 days at a time.

I did recover numerous silver coins like the one above but when found they are encrusted in a black grit like substance from being in the saltwater for almost 400 years...

Nuestra Señora de Atocha

We also worked the Emerald field recovering emeralds that were lost on the Atocha wreck. I did have the opportunity to find a "Dark" emerald like the one above but only smaller...

"The investors will be happy this year," Randolph said, estimating the shipwreck value of the pearls to exceed $3 million.
The largest of the stash is 52 carats, making it one of the biggest pearls in the world, and worth nearly $500,000, he said.
Along with the box of pearls, divers on the Santa Margarita site also found several gold chains, bars and artifacts in the same area on the same day.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

"Scrap the TaxCode"!!! ~Congressman Goodlatte~


“The current tax system has spiraled out of control,” said Rep. Goodlatte. “With Americans devoting a total of 6.6 billion hours each year to comply with the current tax code, we need tax simplification.”

Congressman Bob Goodlatte has introduced bipartisan legislation, the Tax Code Termination Act, to abolish the Internal Revenue Code. He has been joined by over 85 members, both Republicans and Democrats, who have cosponsored his legislation.

The Congressman has introduced a new section to his website entitled "Scrap The Taxcode" where more information is available...

Cross posted over at "RightsideVA for Bob Goodlatte 2008"

Monday, April 07, 2008

Augusta County Republican Party ~Mass Meeting~


Senator Hanger and Delegate Saxman have comments regarding the upcoming mass meeting for the Augusta County Republican Committee over at the Augusta Free Press...

"Listen to today’s “Augusta Free Press Show” to learn more about the debate within the Augusta County Republican Committee about its future direction and to hear comments from Sen. Emmett Hanger and Del. Chris Saxman on the issues."

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Obama LIKES Hunters... Who VOTE... It's their guns he dislike...


Investors Business Daily has a interesting article on Obama's views on Concealed weapon permits and those who own guns for hunting...

"Barack Obama says he won't take folks' guns away as long as they're hunters. But when the hunted are his constituents, well, that's different: He opposes concealed carry and the right to self-defense."

Very good article and well worth the read. Some of the interesting points made:

"It's no surprise, then, that Sen. Obama has come out in opposition to concealed-carry laws. In anticipation of an April 16 debate in Philadelphia on the anniversary of the Virginia Tech shootings, Obama told the Pittsburgh Tribune: "I am not in favor of concealed weapons. I think that creates a potential atmosphere where more innocent people could (get shot during) altercations."

"According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, 65.7% of the U.S. population lives in the 39 right-to-carry states, and there's no indication such laws have turned our neighborhoods into the O.K. Corral. To the contrary, all the stats we've seen show a steep decline in murders and violent crimes after a state adopts a right-to-carry law.
Virginia is one of those states, but the only one who had the right to carry last April 16 was Seung-Hui Cho. He shot 32 people to death on a Virginia Tech campus that had declared itself gun-free."

Let us not forget Senator Kerry with his trusted, brand new, just out of the package, ready for the photo op, shotgun and wardrobe during his campaign in 2004. Dont recall if he "bagged" anything during this hunt but it would have been interesting to know how Theresa prepared the game...

St. Mary's Wilderness Trail & Falls ~Fire Damage~


Hiked out to the St. Mary's Falls by way of the St. Mary's River Trail and found that there is no visible damage to this area from the fire last week. I did find fire damage to the area East and North of the St. Mary's river and the river did provide a barrier to the fires advance in several areas.

Visible damage to the moutain peaks of Little Spy Mountain, Big Spy Mountain, and the western side of Long Drive Mountain can be seen from the trail but photos from a distance shows little. Fire damage near the river is mostly burnt leaves, dead wood, and brush. It appears that the fire was more intense as you go up the mountain and I did not enter this area yet for it is still closed and would be better seen by way of trails from the top via the Blue Ridge Parkway...

The St. Mary's River is running strong from all of the recent rains we have had and the Falls looks great and very clean. As you proceed up the river from the parking area fire damage is visible on the Eastern side of the river up to the junction where the Sugar Tree Branch stream enters and deposits into the river. From this point up to the Falls there is no visible fire damage and hope to hike up the Sugar Tree branch soon to look at the damage in that area.

Had to cross over the river twice during the hike and found the water temp to be 41f degrees with few easy crossings along the hike. Passed two hiker\campers during the hike as well as a fly-fisherman already entering the area.

It will be interesting to watch this area and monitor the recovery of the environment damaged by the fire...

Dobie Mountain ~Plane Wreckage~

Took a quick hike yesterday up near Humpback Rocks, at milemarker #5 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and did the Albright Loop Trail to get away from the crowd going up to the "Rocks".
The trail has been there for sometime but only recently marked and advertised with well positioned signs. On the Northside of Dobie Mountain is some plane wreckage that is visible from the trail if looking back uphill from the trail. I found this wreckage the first time while hiking out with a Park Ranger after assisting with a mountain rescue where a hiker was disabled and had to be carried out to the Humpback parking area. After working with the Ranger afterwards it was determined that this wreck was from around the 1980's and is in an area that is now getting increased hiking traffic...

Pretty much just two sections of wreckage that has been picked over and remaining sections not worth pulling out for salvage...