SAN ANTONIO – The New Braunfels tube chute on the Comal River is well known for being a great spot for fun in the sun, but it’s also well known for its sunken treasures. Tubers have sunglasses, water bottles, phones and other possessions when slipping, sliding and inevitably flipping over in the river.
That’s why treasure diver Brandon Jordan picked the spot to feature on his popular “Jiggin’ With Jordan” YouTube channel. And it didn’t disappoint. He dredged up quite a few items — some just minutes after tubers lost them, reuniting several people with things like water bottles and sunglasses.
But the discovery that Jordan was most excited about, probably brought the most dread for the person who lost it. He found what appears to be a man’s diamond-encrusted wedding band that had settled into some rocks below the torrents.
“I was holding onto a rock for my life and I just happened to see it glimmering down there. I couldn’t tell it was a ring, I could tell it was shiny metal. I just grabbed it and started freaking out,” Jordan said on the video.
The New Braunfels tube chute was one of several stops during Jordan’s Texas trip. He was also given special permission by San Antonio city officials to dive in the San Antonio River along the River Walk over two days in June. On the first day he explored the riverbed near the convention center. On the second day, he dove into the river near the Shops at Rivercenter.
Jordan also filmed another video while floating along the San Marcos River. He seemed to enjoy the floating part so much, he admitted that he spent most of his time in the river on his tube and only treasure hunted for about 30 minutes. He still surfaced with quite a haul, plucking out a Bluetooth speaker, a hat, a phone and more than a dozen pairs of sunglasses.
“I will say, San Marcos — whoever is keeping this place clean is doing an amazing job,” Jordan said during the video. “Normally we’re pulling out more trash than treasure and today it was all treasure and only one piece of trash.”
It’s not just about the treasures for Jordan, he also disposes of hundreds of pounds of trash each year in the waterways where he dives. And what does he do with the treasures? He tries to reunite them with their owners, but that’s not always possible.
“We don’t sell anything, we just save it to show off at meet-ups with our fans,” Jordan told KSAT. “After finding the ring there are a ton of people that reach out claiming it. This unfortunately seems to happen when we find anything. It’s always easy to return the iPhones because we just ask what the passcode to the phone is to ensure that it’s theirs. With jewelry, it’s much more difficult unless they have old pictures wearing it.”
So far, he has not found the rightful owner of the ring he found in New Braunfels. And it turns out the stones in the ring aren’t actually diamonds. In a follow-up YouTube video, Jordan visited a jeweler in his home state of Florida who told him that the stones were either cubic zirconia or white sapphires and estimated the ring to be worth about $350-$400.
Jordan says he’ll certainly come back to the Lone Star state for future dives.
“Overall Texas trip so so much fun,” Jordan told KSAT. “I’ve filmed in Texas quite a bit and it’s always a special place. It’s the only other state I’d consider moving to!”
Watch Brandon Jordan’s video from the New Braunfels tube chute: