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Scapa Flow overview



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Ventilator hatch on the James Barrie - Courtesy of John Liddiard

Trawl winch on the James Barrie - Courtesy of John Liddiard

Wheel house on the James Barrie - Courtesy of John Liddiard

Scuba Diving in Scapa Flow, Scotland, UK, Europe

Dive Site: James Barrie

Location: 58°48.78N; 03°02.15W

Description: 666 ton steam trawler

Length: 40 metres (130 feet)

Depth: 38 - 41 metres (125 - 135 feet)

Visibility: 20 metres (65 feet)

Rating: *****

The James Barrie sank in 1969 and makes a nice break from the German fleet when you have had a week diving them. It is a fantastic dive with lots of simple penetration. However, two warnings are needed for this wreck, firstly it must be dived during slack water and secondly thick oil collects on the inside of the wreck, which you must be careful not to cover yourself in. When inside the wreck, look for the sink that is in one of the rooms. A superb dive.

Reader Reviews:

A brilliant dive - good vis and a lovely wreck to look at if you take the time to swim back and look at her. Something to watch out for is that if your dive is long, then the current picks up which you only notice when you put you head up over the side of the boat to launch your SMB. I would definitely dive this again.

Darren Mills, BSAC Dive Leader

You won't dive a more intact wreck than the James Barrie, lies hard over on her starboard side. All superstructure is still in place, be careful with the oil inside the wheelhouse though. A deep dive (43m max) which should be carefully planned as Hoxa Sound is known as a fast moving stretch of water. The wreck is small enough to take in with minimal deco. Top drawer dive this one. I had twenty meters of viz on her and that common from what I hear.

Richard Nokes, BSAC Open Water Instructor

My idea of the classic ship wreck. Intact and in an area of (usually) good vis. Very atmospheric, a stunning dive.

Graham Ferrett

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