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Lars Hemel
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Diving in Lake Erie around Buffalo, Port Dover, Detroit and Cleveland

Name Dive Site:Lake Erie
Inserted/Added by: lars, © Author: Lars Hemel

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Lake Erie has hundreds of shipwrecks to dive at. From dive sites on simple schooners, barges and steamships to bigger patrol boats, freighters and war ships. Diving Lake Erie means business and several shops, equipment stores and tour boats have taken advantage of this. It is a shallow lake which means that water temperatures are often a bit higher in summer and ice is more likely to cover it during winter. Dry suits and thick wetsuits are necessary all year long though.

With a size of almost 400 kilometres long and 90 kilometres wide it is the smallest lake of the Great Lakes. American lake side cities such as Detroit, Cleveland and Buffalo and Canada's Toronto, make it also one of the most densely populated areas. Bounded by crowded states as New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania it has the potential to become a very crowded weekend and/or day diving paradise. Another lake in between of Lake Erie and Lake Huron connected by the Detroit river is Lake St Clair. It is a very shallow lake which from time to time requires large bagger ships to deepener the lake as it is the gateway for ships on their way from and to Lake Huron. Several parts in the Detroit River such as Crystal Bay and the islands near Amherstburg offer ample diving.

Lake Erie has several over crowded shipwreck graveyards. Although wrecks of some of the best ships can be found all across the lake, there are certain areas to mention in particular.

  • Buffalo is an area where wrecks are spread out quite evenly. There are wrecks up till 100 kilometres out of the city, all with its own interesting stories and history to amaze us with.
  • Long Point near the city of Port Dover was a navigational landmark used by ships in bad weather. The multitude of wrecks lie here because this was the area where they often tried to shelter for huge storms and fog. And as there are over 200 shipwrecks in this area, many next to each other, we know it was a dangerous place only for the very brave sailors.
  • Point Pelee is a treacherous peninsula where many wrecks have stranded. Whether you want to dive from shore at shallow schooners or dive into the deep on huge vessels, it can be done here.
  • Sandusky, opposite of Point Pelee, has several smaller islands such as Isle St George, Middle Bass, Put-in-Bay and Kelleys Island where ships had enough opportunities to end up on sandbanks.
Lake Erie was one of the most crowded passages for ships of all kinds. This has resulted in more than 1000 different dive sites, a heaven for the shipwreck enthusiasts.

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