Grand Island Charters
Office and Gift Shop:
Captain Peter Lindquist is the owner-operator of Shipwreck Tours, which offers Glass Bottom Boat Narrated Tours of Lake Superior Shipwrecks and Lake Superior Shipwreck Scuba Diving Tours. He was responsible, in large part, for adding the Steven M. Selvik to the Alger Underwater Diving Preserve.
Open Water Certification Required.
Shipwreck Tours offers Lake Superior shipwreck diving for beginning, intermediate and expert divers. There is a dive shop air service. Morning and afternoon dives. Shipwreck Tours offers individual and group rates.
The Alger Underwater Preserve is located in Lake Superior near the diver-friendly city of Munising in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. This area of Lake Superior's shoreline includes the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, the site of many shipwrecks.
Preserved by the cold fresh water of Lake Superior, these shipwrecks provide some of the finest sport diving in the Midwest. Each year, wrecks appear and disappear as the currents of Lake Superior cover and uncover them. The total number of shipwrecks in the Alger Preserve is unknown. There are 7 major dive sites.
Scuba Dive from the Fireball or the Fun Time, our 25' six passenger dive boat. Both are Coast Guard inspected and licensed, carrying full navigation and safety equipment. Easy off and on at dive site with full width stern ladders. Enter and exit in full gear. The Fireball is used for dive charters accommodating up to 24 divers per trip with room for family and friends to join the divers for a great day on the water. Limited Scuba rental equipment is available at the dive shop and air station.
A diver on the Bermuda.
Primary Dive Sites
The Bermuda, a 135 foot wooden schooner sank in the spring of 1870 in Murray Bay on Grand Island. Her top deck is just 12 feet below the water's surface where she has remained for 140 years. The Bermuda went down in 1870 and is an intact schooner sitting upright and waiting for visitors. The Bermuda had three hatches giving access to the cargo hold, as well as two companionways and the large cabin trunk near the stern.
The Smith Moore, a wooden steam barge in 90' of water. This is the most famous shipwreck in the area. The Smith Moore was lost in the Munising East Channel on July 13, 1889 as the result of damages suffered in a collision. The wreck lies nearly intact on the sand bottom.
The Kiowa, a steel bulk freight steamer 251 feet in length, hit by a gale in Nov. 1929. The Kiowa is in 20-40 foot depths. On a clear day the huge sections of hull are easily visible from the surface. The stern of the wreck, lies on its port side. Here the diver can see the steamer's steering quadrant and emergency steering gear. A short distance forward, an enclosed ladderway leads down toward the propeller shaft tunnel. At the forward end of the tunnel, the propeller shaft and its massive thrust bearing can be seen.
The Herman H. Hettler was seeking shelter in Munising Harbor, in November of 1926, when she slammed into a reef. She is now at 20'- 40' of water. On the inner edge of the reef where the Hettler struck, her boiler can be found in about 25 feet of water, along with part of her hull and a field of debris such as mechanical parts, tanks, piping, and even a bathtub.
A mysterious tree stump was found in the wreckage of the Herman H. Hettler. Suspecting that the tree was extremely old, Captain Pete Lindquist sent samples of the wood for carbon dating. The laboratory results showed an age of 7,910 years plus or minus l00 years, but provided no clue as to why a nearly 8,000 year old tree would be found amid the remains of a 1926 shipwreck.
The Manhatten, a wooden freighter in 30'- 40', hit a reef in October of 1903. Divers can visit a large portion of the steamer's hull framing. The vessel's enormous rudder, with its depth markings still visible, lies nearby.
The Steven M. Selvick, a 70' tug intentionally sunk in 1996 in 40'-60' of water. The pilot house starts in 40 ft. of water, making this a great dive for beginners to experts. Divers have access to all areas of the tug. The pilothouse, galley, mess room, engine room, and crew quarters can all be penetrated.
Shipwreck Tours Offers
55' Fiberglass boat, the Fireball, with a capacity of
For more information on diving these shipwrecks, visit the
Scuba Diving section on Shipwreck Tours main web site
Information on the shipwrecks is from the book Dangerous Coast: Pictured Rocks Shipwrecks by Fred Stonehouse and Daniel Fountain, Avery Color Studios, Marquette Michigan, 1997. This book, and other shipwreck books by Fred Stonehouse, are for sale at the Shipwreck Tours Bookstore and Ticket Office.
Photo of the Steven Selvick by Mike Kennedy
Other underwater photos from the Fred Stonehouse Collection
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