Lina diving, Lina diving, Lina diving
Croatian Lina diving is one of the most attractive shipwrecks in the North Adriatic among the several wrecks hidden close to Istria. The picture of Lina is on the cover of the book “Treasure of Adriatic” written by Jasen Mesic and Danijel Frka what talk by itself about beauty of the wreck.
Lina was Italian cargo ship which ended up crashing the rocky island Cres, due to foggy weather and navigation error.
On the night of 14 January 1914, because of thick fog, the ship lost its way while navigating through the Vela Vrata Channel. A heavy storm caused the ship to run in to the shallow water near Cape Pecen on Cres Island, where it quickly sank. It happened just before the First World War.
The wreck is located on the south side of Cape Pecenj in a small bay. The wreck is on the depth of 21 to 52 meters. The position is very well known and marked by a buoy on the surface.
The ship lies on the sandy bottom with its bow turned towards the shore. The bow is located in the middle of a small cove, around 50 meters south of the peak Pečen. When the sea is clear enough it can be seen from the surface. A buoy with a rope is tied to the bow, however, sometimes, during a storm, it is torn of so it is best to try and find the wreck with a sounder or by diving. The bottom is steep, while the bow is at the depth of 20 meters, the stern is at 55 meters. The most impressive thing is to dive in the shallow part, at the very end of the cove, and start to swim towards the deeper part because then a big bow will rise from the big blue. On the bow two admiralty anchors can be seen. They are tied with a crossbar to the upper part of the deck just like with a sailboat (later on, modern anchors have a different construction and don’t have crossbars which allows the anchor to be retracted into the hole on the side of the boat). The wooden main deck is rotten, but with the whole iron construction staying intact, it is possible to see the whole inside of the ship from above. The boat storages are empty and there’s nothing left of the captain’s bridge due to the fact that it was made of wood. However, on the same spot there is still something left of the rudder. Parts of the bridge are still mostly intact. The machine room can be entered through the door and one can reach the boiler as well as the steam machine. Items and equipment are less overgrown than the outside of the ship and inside one can see forkbeards and congers. But beware, due to the steep position of the ship, here the depth is almost 40 meters which is the limit of sport diving. On the superstructures, a chimney can be seen lying down over them. There is still a letter “G” made of tin attached to the chimney. The letter represents a trademark for “Adriatica” company as well as the first letter of the owners name – family Granata.
Behind the superstructures is sterns storage for cargo (also empty) and a mast where the remains of fish nets hang. Diving even deeper along the deck, one comes to the stern of the boat. The depth here is already 50 meters and continuing even deeper towards the bolts located on the sand it is 55 meters. However, the stern is almost always surrounded with a blurry layer of sea water and because of that, it is not advisable to dive to that part of the ship. It is much safer and more interesting to be around the middle and front part of the ship. There can be seen small schools of fish. At the end of the trip, we advise to visit a small underwater cave located at the end of the cove with its entrance right under the surface. There are usually small schools of fish, mostly Saddled and Common seabreams that seek protection from larger predators.
The Croatian diving Lina conditions are, in the most of the cases, very good without see current. Diving excursions are organized by a diving centres from Cres and Martinscica.
Although the depth of Lina allowed diving for even less experience divers, it provide great experience for advanced divers as well.
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