ss N.G. Petersen, built 1898 and owned by A/S Dampsk. Selsk. Vendila (Svendsen & Christensen), Copenhagen. She was lost while at anchor in Falmouth Bay on March 13, 1918, due to a collision with Norwegian ss SIRI while in convoy. The vessel was carrying a cargo of iron ore, which is most of what remains. Maximum depth is around 22m on high water. Recent ships at anchor have disturbed parts of the wreck making it a little more interesting. read more →
Today was going to be my first trip on Dive Action’s Cornish Pussy, in fact it was everyone’s first trip. It is a brand new, purpose built dive boat, with kitting up benches and a lift. As it was the first trip there was a bit of mucking about to start off with, but once under way, the boat performed well.
Our first task was to look for the Basking Sharks. There had been Basking Sharks hanging around Falmouth all week, we had seen 4 last night, so hopes of seeing them again were high. As we left the estuary, there they were, again at least 4. We jumped in with our masks and snorkels to see if they would come close, eventually one did, marvellous.
Our first dive for the day was going to be the N.G. Petersen, a Danish cargo ship carrying Iron Ore, that sunk in 1918 after colliding with another ship. It isn’t too deep at around 20m, and is another wreck that has been well dived over the years. We were dropped in onto another boats shotline, which looked like it had been dragged across the bottom, I followed the furrow it had left. After a short swim over thousands of Brittle Stars, Hermit Crabs and Decorator Spider Crabs I found myself on a small rocky area that was slightly shallower than the area I had been swimming over. I assumed this was the ships cargo, it looked like iron ore, which it turned out was the ships cargo. As I descended down the other side I came across some pieces of metal, which was obviously now the other side of the wreck. I then followed the seam of metal along.
Hiding beneath the seam I found Conger Eels, Velvet Swimming Crabs, Harbour Crabs, Cuckoo Wrasse and Spider Crabs. There isn’t a lot of wreckage visible, everything above the cargo has crumbled away, but I did come across a couple of bollards, a shaft with a gear wheel on it and some bent pieces of metal. There was also a semi-circular piece visible that was about 4 foot in diameter that reminded me of a part of a generator, it looked a bit large to be a generator for a 72m ship though.
Towards the bow the anchor chains lay near another gear wheel, although there was no noticeable bow section that I could make out. Unknowingly I was soon back at the point where I had started, I only recognised it due to a particular circular bit of wreckage, I must have swam around the stern first. I knew finding the shotline wasn’t going to be easy, so I sent up the delayed surface marker buoy and made my ascent using that.
The N.G. Petersen is not a challenging dive, and not particularly interesting really.