28 avril 2014


Badewanne divers explore the Z-36 wreck.

Badewanne explore the German destroyer Z36

On a dark, stormy December night in 1944 a fleet of five German warships was cruising the labyrinthine waters of the Gulf of Finland. Due to navigation error two of the ships ran into their own German minefield between Porkkala and Naissaari and were lost.

Badewanne, a Finnish, non-profit organization representing a group of voluntary divers that have been documenting shipwrecks in the Gulf of Finland for more than 15 years, recently dove down to one of the destroyers, the Z36. Juha Flinkman, one of the Badewanne divers, gives us a guided tour:

The Z-36 is covered in trawl netting.

“Diving to the wreck of Zerstörer (Destroyer) Z36 is a unique and eerie experience. As you glide down the shotline into the darkness, the beam of your light first picks up a scary mess of mast, radar aerials and – trawl, lots of it! Carefully avoiding the trawl you descend towards the superstructure past a quadruple 20 mm flak gun wrapped in netting, barrels sticking through the mesh.

Passing over the port side of the bridge wing, you suddenly stare at the muzzles of a twin 20 mm Flak gun mounted on the fo’csle deck. The barrels vainly aim at the unreachable sky far above. This flak gun is situated a little aft of “Bertha Geschütz”, that is B-gun of the main armament of 127 mm guns. These Mob 36b type destroyers weren’t supposed to have any such armament here, but what the heck, maybe the Skipper just wanted some extra anti-aircraft hardware installed!

Later, swimming from the gracefully arching bows towards midships, your lights pick up mighty Rheinmetall-Borsig barrels of Anton and Bertha Geschütze still defiantly pointing forwards, but never to be fired again. Even the riflings inside the barrels are clearly visible.

Even when diving in the clear parts of the wreck, the ever-present trawl netting looms, if not in your vision, then in your mind. You must always be aware of this danger – there is no room for carelessness.

This wreck is very big. It was distinctly once a very powerful warship, but now lays with her back broken on the seafloor, wrapped in trawl, and her payload of death strewn all around. A dark and a lonely place.”

All images: © Badewanne

À propos de Suunto

La société Suunto vit le jour en 1936 lorsque Tuomas Vohlonen, ingénieur finlandais pratiquant la course d'orientation, inventa une méthode pour fabriquer en masse la boussole à bain liquide. Depuis lors, Suunto a su conserver un rôle de pionnière en matière de conception et d'innovation sur le marché des montres de sport, des ordinateurs de plongée et des instruments de sport utilisés par les aventuriers du monde entier. Des plus hautes montagnes aux océans les plus profonds, Suunto équipe physiquement et mentalement les aventuriers des grands espaces à la conquête de nouveaux territoires.

Le siège social et l'usine de Suunto se trouvent à Vantaa, en Finlande. Employant plus de 400 personnes dans le monde, Suunto commercialise ses produits dans plus de 100 pays. Cette société est une filiale d'Amer Sports Corporation, au même titre que ses marques sœurs Salomon, Arc'teryx, Atomic, Wilson, Precor et Mavic.

Suunto fait équipe avec Strava
Suunto lance la mise à jour logicielle 2.0 pour Ambit2, Ambit2 S et Ambit2 R