The Wreck of the Vixen

I’m going to have more from our Bermuda trip next week, but for now here’s a shot of the HMS Vixen, one of the many, many shipwrecks in the reefs around the island. We saw the Vixen at night on a glass-bottom boat cruise (not as exciting as billed, but still pretty entertaining).

The ship was one of the British Navy’s first attempts at an ironclad, and was meant to be a rammer, but was poorly constructed and slow. She was eventually scuttled off Bermuda to serve as a defensive perimeter, making it harder to approach the island. Today, the Vixen contributed to the reef around her, and serves as a major feeding ground and tour destination, as (as far as I know) it’s the only accessible shipwreck in the region that still sticks above water.

This shot was taken at night with flash, accounting for the brightness on the ship and the total darkness beyond. The light in the water is the result of the glass-bottom boat: floodlights illuminate the floor of the sea, which you can see into through reasonably sized portals set in the hull. You’re looking a ways down to get to them, and especially at night the colors are muted, but you can still see fish and coral:

Window Fish.jpg

Technically, of course, the Vixen isn’t a wreck, as it was intentionally sunk in that spot, but it’s cooler to say shipwreck. If you don’t like it, get your own nerdblog.

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