Location: Pompano Beach
Depth Range: 15-30'
Skill Level: Open Water Diver or Snorkeler
SS Copenhagen is a natural wreck, meaning it sank on it’s own so it is declared as a State Underwater Archaeological Preserve. This wreck was a cargo ship carrying coal and ran aground on the Pompano Drop Off reef. Some of this wreck was visible above water so the US Navy used it for target practice in WWII and it currently sits in 30 ft of water in hundreds of pieces. Some areas of interest on this site is the huge ship anchor and the Preserve plaque. This is also a great site for snorkeling because it’s in line with the shallow 15ft reef off Pompano Beach and it accessible by the mooring system.
The Anchor of the SS Copenhagen
SS Copenhagen after it's grounding
State Underwater Archaeological Preserve Plaque
Current image of the SS Copenhagen
Copenhagen came to rest along a rocky ledge, made up of large limestone blocks divided by cracks and crevices. After grounding, the ship listed to port; her starboard hull eventually collapsed onto the rocks while the port side slumped onto the deeper sand bottom. Over the years, much of the hull has fallen apart and settled over this uneven terrain. The lower hull is still articulated, especially in the stern. Coal from the ship's bunkers and cargo, camouflaged by growth, litters the bottom near the wreck. Today, much of the ship's structure has become part of the reef, and the wreckage provides an ideal haven for all kinds of marine life. Hard and soft corals and multicolored sponges thrive on the steel hull plates. Juvenile reef fish and tropicals dart in and out of the twisted structure, which serves as a sheltered nursery. Seafans sway in the gentle surge along the length of the ship. The pillow block that supported the propeller shaft, shown here, is a focal point for curious parrot fish. Moray eels hide in cracks in the reef and wreck. Empty beds for the ship's two boilers today house a population of and sergeant majors energetically defending their niche in the sunken wreck.
Along this same reef line is The Nursery. This site got it’s name because there is a family of nurse sharks that like to hang out in the area which makes it fun for all to experience. This site has some great coral & fish life and actually has a very rare coral growth of staghorn coral here. Another fun part about this dive is the Bermuda chubs like to hang out under your boat, which is great for snorkelers.