Scuba Diving the Mapledawn Shipwreck at Penetanguishene

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The Mapledawn is a steel freighter in 15-25′ of water, known for having a quadruple expansion engine, and has some ties to one of our favourite Picton shipwrecks, the Manola, as the Mapledawn was first christened as the Manola, then cut in half, when the bow sank in Lake Ontario in 75′ of water. It’s a fantastic shipwreck with a fantastic story.

The Maple Dawn, formerly known as the Manola, was constructed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1890. The ship was thought to have been sold with the intention of serving in WWI. The Manola was cut in half for transport through the St. Lawrence and was to be reassembled upon arrival at its destination. However, a storm caused the loss of its bow section near Quinte, and it was not sold as a result. The Manola was reassembled and renamed the Maple Dawn after a new bow section was built.

The Maple Dawn was caught in a severe snowstorm in Georgian Bay, just off Christian Island, on November 30, 1924. Because of the low visibility, the ship had wandered into an area littered with shallow shoals. She eventually struck a shoal, causing the propeller and a portion of the propeller shaft to snap off, resulting in massive flooding of the engine room. The engines failed with little time to react, and with the ship adrift, she quickly ran aground.

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Kathy is the owner of Kirk Scuba Gear, a passionate Scuba Diver, Ocean Advocate and Managing Editor of The Scuba News Canada

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