North Mole Barge

North Mole Barge

GPS: S 32°03.110'

         E 115°43.565'

Location: North Mole

Site depth: 8 metres

Divable conditions: <1.5m swell

Visibilty: 5-10 metres

Vessel: Steel Batge

Construction: Steel

Tons: Unknown

Vessel length: Unknown

Wreck event: Scuttled

The North Mole Barge is one of Perth's most accessible shore wrecks of some historic significance. Often referred to as the 'Gareenup Wreck', when in actual fact the wreck still remains unidentified. The wreck is of the construction of a steel hopper barge and due to having a boiler on site it likely had steam driven machinery or propulsion. The wreck is likely a dredge that would have worked the Swan River and Fremantle Port, but it is unknown when it was likely to have been sunk. Thought to have originally been destined for the Rottnest deep water graveyard it fell well short of its destination and was originally sunk 200 metres from its present day location. In 1988 due to expansion of the Fremantle port and with its popularity with local divers, the sunken barge was raised and finally laid to rest 180 metres north from the northern harbour sea wall.

Located 180 metres north of the North Mole at a bearing of 355° from the disabled fishing platform. The North Mole Barge often proved difficult to locate for shore divers. Recently local divers have installed a pole trail that runs from the base of the disabled ramp right to the wreck with stainless steel poles marking the way every few metres. Entry down the ramp can prove difficult, the Howie's SCUBA webpage provides a great source of information for diving the North Mole site. A link to Howies SCUBA is available through the website listing link on the home page.

Unidentified wreckage

Near the barge site around 30 metres away on rough bearing of 270° - 290° is a small patch of wreckage that could likely be from another vessel there a small patches of coiled pipe and what seems to be two ribs of a vessel scattered around the area. The area inside Rous Head and under the breakwater were once shipbreaking and a scuttling area for smaller vessel for the port. Early research by the Maritime Archaeology Association of WA found a number of wrecks in the area before the Rous Head development and harbour expansion in the late 1980's.