Fyne Pioneer, Loch Fyne

Site Name: Pelican - Sound of Mull


The Pelican was built for City of Cork Steam Packet Co and launched in 1859, being sold to David MacBrayne 38 years later. After many years of uneventful service, she ended her sailing days as a coal storage hulk in Tobermory Bay, where she was lying at her ususal mooring on 5th December 1895. In the early hours of 6th December, a gale broke. The powerful storm caused the old ship's anchor chain to part, and the Pelican drfited helplessly across Tobermory Bay and went aground on the west shore of Calve Island. As the tide went out, she took on a list to starboard, eventually slipping off the rocks and sinking in deep water close to the shore.

Dive Site Info

The wreck of the Pelican sits upright on a mud and silt seabed in about 20 metres. The wreck is free from hazards, lying in a sheltered position close to the shore of Calve Island. To find her, face the house on Calve island. The wreck is to the right by about 10-15m. Drop down the cliff, which in itself is rather a nice wall dive, to see the imposing 'clipper' bow with short bowsprit rising out of the depths. The bow is still intact although her stern has collapsed. Little else remains as her engines were removed prior to her use as a coal hulk at the end of her life. Her wooden decking is completely gone leaving only the shell of the ship to explore. The silty seabed causes visibility to reduce very quickly so carefull finning technique is essential.

When to dive

Can be dived at any state of the tide.