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Shipwreck Profile

Umpqua 11 stern
Stern of Umpqua 11 observed in Monterey Canyon during 2014 by Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute’s remotely operated vehicle Doc Ricketts. Vessel is in 1,662 meters of water, lying on starboard side, and lightly dusted with sediment. Courtesy of Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute.

Umpqua 11

Freight Barge

shipwreck location map

Casualty Location: Moss Landing, Monterey County, California, USA; scuttled at Monterey Canyon

Location Status: Located (see Important Note)

Casualty Date: 1982 (July 10)

Owner: Umpqua Division of Bohemia Lumber Co., Inc.

Home Port: Reedsport, Oregon, USA

Length: 240 feet Beam: 60 feet

Gross Tonnage: 2,030 Cargo:

Builder: Gunderson Bros. Engineering Corporation

Launched: 1970 (Portland, Oregon, USA)

Official Number: 528635

Description: On 2 September 1970, Gunderson Bros. Engineering Corp. of Portland, Oregon launched a pair of 240 x 60-foot oceangoing gravel barges, Umpqua 10 and Umpqua 11, into the Willamette River (Anonymous 1970, Barber 1970). Built at a cost of $1 million, it was the first twin barge launching in the Pacific Northwest since World War II (Anonymous 1970). Umpqua 10 and Umpqua 11 were originally built for the Umpqua River Navigation Company (Gunderson Marine LLC 2018); acquired by the Bohemia Lumber Company (FundingUniverse 2018). The two steel barges were designed to transport rock and large boulders for jetty fill; and constructed for full ocean service to American Bureau of Shipping standards and U.S. Coast Guard requirements (Gunderson Marine LLC 2018).

Nature of Casualty: On 10 July 1982, Umpqua 11 ran aground near Moss Landing, California. Considered a hazard to navigation, the barge was towed to a mooring buoy offshore at Monterey Canyon and scuttled on 24 July 1982. Scuttling of the wreck would not be allowed today, as MBNMS is protected from the intentional sinking of vessels.

During a research cruise on 29 October 2014, to study an active earthquake fault in Monterey Bay, a rectangular structure on the seafloor was detected with sonar using Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute’s (MBARI) seafloor-mapping autonomous underwater vehicle D. Allan B. (MBARI 2014). The object was further investigated with video cameras using MBARI’s remotely operated vehicle Doc Ricketts. The stern of the sunken vessel with the name, Umpqua 11, and its original home port of “Reedsport, Oregon,” was clearly visible. The sunken vessel rests in 1,662 meters of water on the muddy seafloor in Monterey Canyon.

Due to copyright issues, newspaper articles cannot be reproduced here. See Referenced and Additional Resources below.

Referenced and Additional Resources

  • Anonymous. 1970. Pair of 240-foot barges launched by Gunderson at cost of $1 million. The Oregonian; 3 September 1970, p 39.
  • Barber, L. 1970. Portland News: Two gravel barges go down Gunderson Ways. Marine Digest 49(3):27.
  • Clark, Samantha. 2014. Researchers discover shipwreck in Monterey Bay. The Mercury News (San Jose, CA), 5 Nov 2014. World Wide Web electronic publication. []. Accessed [11/5/14].
  • FundingUniverse. 2018. Bohemia, Inc. History. World Wide Web electronic publication. []. Accessed [6/12/18].
  • Gunderson Marine LLC. 2018. Umpqua #10 and 11 vessel drawings and construction records, Gunderson Bros. Engineering Corporation. Gunderson Marine LLC archives. Accessed [4/19/18].
  • Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). 2014. Researchers find wreck of sunken barge in Monterey Canyon., 24 Nov 2014. World Wide Web electronic publication. []. Accessed [11/24/14].

Important Note: Section 922.132 of the sanctuary regulations prohibits or restricts several activities in order to safeguard sanctuary resources, including: Moving, removing, injuring or possessing historical resources.

For a complete “official text" of MBNMS regulatory prohibitions, see Title 15, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 922.132 published by the U.S. Government Printing Office.

Reviewed: April 11, 2024
Web Site Owner: National Ocean Service

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