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Bedwell Bay Wreck, YMS-159 aka VT-100 - Canada

Bedwell Bay Wreck, YMS-159 aka VT-100 is a shore accessible salt water dive site, located at Kelly Rd., Bedwell Bay, British Columbia, Canada. The maximum depth is 51-60ft/16-18m. The average visibility is 11-15ft/3-5m.

N 49° 19.265 W 122° 54.508

From Bedwell Bay Road, head down to the water on Kelly Rd. and make the sharp left turn at the end. You will see the no parking signs end where the gravel shoulder widens slightly. Ensure you are off the pavement when you park and that you are not in the No Parking zone. You will be towed. There is room for about 2-3 cars max. The trailhead is just north of the parking spot and you will see a rope tied to a tree to assist you down the trail to the beach. The rocks on the beach can be very slippery. Please be respectful of the neighbourhood and do not park on private property or use private beach access points.
The wreck lies about 300m off the shore near the cache site and faces southwest on a bearing of 230degrees listing to port on a sloping mud bottom. Depths are 55 feet at the bow, 42 feet at the stern. The wreck hosts calcareous tubeworms, sea anemones, perch and small rockfish... although not in abundance. Visibility is often poor due to algae blooms and stirred up silt.
In June 1943, the American Yard Class Minesweeper (YMS) known only by the number 159 was one of 481 YMS motor minesweepers used to clear the way for amphibious assults taking place on the battlefields of the Far East. It was 136 feet long, was equipped with twin diesels and had a wooden hull to prevent it from becoming a target for magnetic mines. After the war, the 159 was next heard of as an undocumented foreign vessel operating in Canadian waters. The year was now 1955. The 159 had survived the war and reappeared in BC, with both a new name and a new job. It was called the VT-100 to designate it as a Vancouver Tugboat #100. Stripped of much of it’s superstructure and engines, the vessel was to be used as a woodchip barge. But the VT-100’s career was to be short lived. On April 22nd, 1957, vandals started a fire on board which spread to the nearby Victoria, a 300-foot former passenger liner. Two fire-fighting tugs were soon on the scene and the Victoria was saved. The VT-100, however, could not be extinguished and burned to the waterline and sank.
Since the sinking, the VT-100 has been a favourite spot for divers and is a popular spot to introduce divers to wreck diving. It is one of the only wreck dives in the region which is accessible from shore. Most of it’s fittings have been removed by scavenger divers and even the propellor was blown off by ’treasure hunters ’ dive pirates’ looting it.

Underwater Life: crabs, nudibranchs, alabaster and golden dironas, dendronotus rufus, opalescent and lemon nudibranchs. the wreck also supports a big population of large Dungeness and red rock crabs

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