If there’s one dive in Lake Tahoe that required solid buoyancy skills, the Rubicon Wall is that dive. A diver’s body was recovered last week in Lake Tahoe that had apparently been bobbing in the blue abyss for nearly 2 decades.
I remember the incident described in the news story because I had recently become a divemaster at the time and was very actively involved in SCUBA classes and doing a lot of diving in general. Word spreads fast about such things–even without the Internet.
There is some debate over whether this diver is the one described in the story. There was another accident in 1995 in which the victim was also never recovered, and there’s a good possibility that this could be him. In that case, as the story goes, he left his girlfriend aboard his boat with instructions to get help if he didn’t surface in an hour. Four hours later, she did seek help… You know the rest.
Basically Rubicon drops over a series of giant boulders straight to the bottom. If you are unable to control your buoyancy, you could conceivably end up over 1000 feet deep. The sheer drop-off makes for a spectacular dive, but you really need to pay close attention, and to have exceptional buoyancy control skills; something neither of the two seem to have had.