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Updated October 24, 2023

Lake Erie Mooring Status

  • September 23/2023 - Rick Lymer (River Dive Charters) once again supplied his boat and took Mooring Chairman Chris Corfield and helpers Spencer Shoniker and Ian Marshall on a 63 mile tour of Lake Erie's Eastern Basin to remove all six of our mooring buoys for the winter season. We left Port Colbourne harbour with moderate winds out of the north and 0.5M wave close to shore. As we moved away from shore, the winds picked up to 17 gusting 22 Knots and the waves increased to 1.5M with some 2.0M thrown in which meant a long bumpy ride. We managed to de slime the buoys and remove the chains (easier carrying) as they came out of the water. We've learnt over the years that heavy scrub brushes and Scotch pads when the buoys are still wet makes cleaning a lot easier than trying to pressure wash them after they dry. Although the buoys came clean, Chris still had to pressure wash the chains and tag lines. It's amazing how much green slim these buoys get over a Lake erie Summer. The Tiller wreck in Lake Ontario still remains deployed.


The 2023 dive season is off to a good start. On April 15th Mat Mandziuk from Dan's Dive Shop allowed Chris Corfield & Ian Marshall to ride along on thier charter to the "Tiller Wreck on Rick Lymer's (Rivers Dive Charters) boat. The bottom tackle, float and line were all cleaned and inspected and found to be in good shpe. The buoy was deployed and NavWarnings issued. NDA and SOS buoy status website were updated. Rick's boat has been chartered for two days mid may to do the Lake Erie Moorings.

May 13, 2023. Great day on the Lake! Rick Lymer (River Dive Charters) took six of us on a 63 mile Grand Tour of the Eastern Basin. Winds were low and water was calm so our originally planned two days of work, was completed in one long day. We had four divers; Trent Zawaly, Andrew Weber, Jordan Eastman and Hugo Marques with Chris Corfield and myself as surface support. The four divers dove in shifts to limit decompression obligations and completed a total of 14 dives. Everything from the bottom up was floated, scraped, brushed clean and inspected. The George Finnie had the descent line, bottom chain and jug replaced, as was the Raleigh's bottom jug. Everything else was in excellent condition. All seven of our wrecks are now moored for the season. Ian

July 18/2023 Tiller buoy is no longer on site, Apparently the attachment point at the bottom of the buoy broke loose and it drifted over to the US side. It has been brought in to the Youngstown NY Yacht Club and we are working on retrieving it but it sounds like it is damaged beyond repair. Will pst more when we have more information. Ian

August 1.2023. Rick Lymer (River Dive Charters) took Chris Corfield, Trent Zawaly, Smilely and myself out to the Tiller. Not knowing what we were going to find as the old buoy had it's bottom ripped out, we had the new buoy, rope and hardware as well as a 4000# lift bag, ready to replace evrythingas well as to reposition the block.As it turned out, the buoy rather than being dragged by a frieghter as we had thought, appears to have been hung up by a small boat. The surface tag line was shredded about one foot away from it's attachment point on the buoy so a prop must have cut throgh the attachment point. All we had to do was replace the buoy and surface tag line with new. Everything else was fine. NAVWARNING has been reissued.


Navigation Warnings (Notice to Mariners)


Please!!  If you notice a problem with any of the moorings listed above, please notify Niagara Divers' Association so we may update the list and perform any repairs.


As many of you may be aware, the Niagara Divers’ Association has been involved in mooring shipwrecks in Lake Erie’s Eastern Basin for several years. We have been installing concrete blocks, chain, line and floats on shipwrecks in both the US and Canadian waters. Although we had plans to manufacture approved buoys, we had held off due to lack of funds. At Shipwrecks/2002, Save Ontario Shipwrecks stated that they may be able to help in the near future. They later donated two buoys that year.

In the fall of 2002, SOS announced they had received a $21,000.00 Trillium Fund Grant to allow them to moor 50 shipwrecks in the province of Ontario. At the February 4, 2003 monthly NDA meeting, guest speaker Jim Friend of SOS announced that the NDA would be receiving five more buoys for Coast Guard approved sites in Lake Erie, bringing us up to a total of seven.  All seven buoys were installed in May/ June 2003.  Over the years we have had to replace all of these medium duty buoys, as they do not hold up well to the rigours of open lake waters. For the 2009 season we tested two  heavier duty "GDI 0.25 Buoys" which held up very well.  By the end of 2009 three more of the original style smaller buoys were in need of replacing and a decision was made to order five more of the new "GDI 0.25" style to be put out for the 2010 season. These new buoys all have internal radar reflectors and solar lights. The few medium duty buoys we have remaining will be kept to be used as spares. The buoys were received and put out during the 2010 season. In 2011 we had a group purchase with SOS of the larger 0.30 GDI buoy which is now installed on the Port Dlhousie "Tiller Wreck" and Lake Erie's "Niagara" wrecks.

Original SOS Medium Duty Buoy


GDI 0.25 Buoy

0.25 Buoy

GDI 0.30 Buoy

0.30 Buoy

It is the responsibility of the NDA to properly install in the spring, maintain and remove each fall.  We also notify the Coast Guard’s “Notice to Mariners” as to the status of the buoys.

The above chart shows the shipwrecks on which we have placed moorings. The targets represent shipwrecks with line and small floats. The small ships represent the Canadian Coast Guard approved sites with concrete block anchors and buoy moorings.