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Capt. Paul’s response:
Capt. Paul’s Fishing Edge for Barataria Bay lists El Cid (Hotel Sid) as position No. BAT 29 at a position for the platform at or about N29 19.867’ x W89 58.163’.
The Middle Banks was/is a depression in the seabed in Barataria Bay that is about two miles in length east to west and about 1,800 yards north to south at its widest point. It is almost 2.5 miles due east of Pelican Point.
The seabed was about 2 feet deeper in this area. I say “was” because the recent hurricanes deposited a substantial amount of silt and sand throughout the bay area. The reported position may have been completely filled in or, as sand dunes in the desert, may have moved.
If they are still there, I suggest that you first try the below coordinates then try a parallel position north and south of the stated latitude.
The center of the western part of the depression was shown to be at or about N29 22.124’ x W89 56.673.
The center of the eastern section is at or about N29 22.344’ x W89 55.162’.
It is my understanding that it was at one time an island, then a shoal and that the persistent currents moving around the land caused a trench to be excavated on the north side of the land. Eventually all of the land was washed away, leaving only the depression that is in the area.
You will need an accurate shallow-water depth finder and a calm sea to find the location, even with the latitude-longitude coordinates. I tried once on a windy day where the waves in the bay reached a height of 2 feet, and I could not locate the trough. Later on a calm day, going to the exact same GPS position, my depth finder did indicate the depression.
A depression in the depth of the already shallow waters of Barataria Bay usually will produce a variety of marine life. The Middle Banks are waypoints BAT 20 and BAT 21 in the Barataria Bay Edge file.
Unless otherwise specified, all positions are stated as H,DDD,MM.mmm, and were determined using WGS 84 datum. All headings, bearings and courses are stated in magnetic degrees.