Maybe this is a bit off-topic, but it's the 4th of July, and I'm talking real firecrackers and explosives.
The connections with water skiing are there. Back-back, well before 9/11, doing courses through the ice,
you need to make a hole large enough for decent-size anchors. Typical ice augur isn't enough,
although it works for the "arrowhead" type anchors that are driven in to the bottom.
Best way is certainly to cut a nice rectangular hole with chainsaw through the ice. But, I used DYNAMITE.
Where I lived in my graduate college days, there was a construction company next door. The safes
that they kept the explosive caps and dynamite were no more than 10 ft. from my door to my apartment.
Acquired legitimately, and when I don't think you even needed a license, although the construction
people knew me and I was over 21.
The process goes like this:
Drill a hole through the ice with a brace & drill bit. Then take a 1/4 stick of dynamite and lower it to
even with the ice/water interface. Back well off, with your wires and battery. Then: Ka-Boom.
I also used to do boat gates 2 at at a time. Set the charge up too high, and too much blows into the air.
Too low, and you just get a lot of cracked ice. Shovel out a bit and then drop the anchor.
Worked well in the days when accuracy standards were not as high.
Only got busted once when someone reported that we were fishing thru the ice.
Another time, helping prepare a ski site in Banks, OR, I used dynamite to get rid of some stumps
that were going to be not far under when the lake finally filled. 1/4 stick to blow a bit of a hole,
and then maybe 2-3 sticks to dispatch the stump. Yup, I did get my explosives license, and well before 9/11.
The big challenge was a big Oregon log that was maybe 6 feet in diameter and 15 feet long,
and maybe larger. Again, small blasts to clear room for the Big One. Which was something like 60 sticks
of 60% dynamite. Ka-Boom, and the log, which must have weighed several tons went a good bit (40 feet)
into the lake's deeper bottom, spinning slowly like a baton, then SPLOOK.
Ah, the Good Olde Daze. I acquired several boxes of M80's (the real ones) from a friend who had passed
through the Carolinas in the 1960's. Used most of them up wastefully. But, in the Animal House fraternity
era, I did blow up a couple of toilets. Every once in a while, I feel the need for a good M80, but those
times are long gone now.
I could get into our Rocket Club at Engineering School, but that is too much off topic.
We had plenty of fun before they finally banned us. Details on request.