|LAKE WASHINGTON HISTORY
Sand Point 1884
LAKE WASHINGTON , an 18 mile long lake in Seattle's back yard is a final resting place for an estimated 109 planes, 50 ships, a coal train and other odd objects that sank over the years. The lake is two to six miles wide covering an area of 34 square miles. The deepest point on the lake is 210 feet, about 700 feet out from East Madison Street. Around Evergreen floating bridge is nearly as deep. The Kenmore area is about 110 feet deep and about 90 feet at Renton. Puget Sound is 600 to 900 feet deep.
Divers say, "When you're diving and going along the bottom at random, you might find a rowboat, a motor, binoculars, fishing poles, water skis, drinking glasses, even an old cook stove washed off a boat years ago in a wind storm." Other divers have found everything from stolen bicycles, sawed-off parking meters to bits of hydroplanes that have crashed and sunk during races. There is rumor that a barge load of illegal liquor was purposely sunk during Prohibition so revenue agents couldn't get it. Many divers have looked for it.
There are actually ancient submerged forests that ended up down there after landslides 1,000 to 3,000 years ago. One is by Kenmore and others nears Mercer Island; they complicate search efforts. In addition, trees also sank while being transported to logging mills. Many of the trees were illegally brought up in the early 1990s by a man later convicted of stealing state property. There's always somebody losing something out there, I even lost my false teeth", says a member of a diving school . from a 1983 news clipping.
PUGET SOUND DIVERS - Comment: The Houghton Bay area of Lake Washington is a literal junk yard from the old Lake Washington Ship Yards. This area is the site of several burned wrecks and scuttled vessels. It was originally thought that the area was reasonably well described but recent forays into the area have consistently turned up more wrecks. Our team has scanned the entire area and has identified more than 30 wrecks for eventual exploration.
A Seattle Times report included information reported here plus, A century ago, before cars and floating bridges, the most common way to get from Mercer Island and the Eastside was by boat. The 55-foot steamer Elfin (No. 6), for example, could carry 35 passengers and transport two tons of freight. It burned and sank on Dec. 2, 1900. The cause of the fire on the Elfin is unknown. Fires were sometimes caused when skippers pushed the boilerpressure to get more speed.
Just north of the Highway 520 bridge, where future anchor cables might be installed for a replacement bridge, are sunken hulls that have drawn the attention of the state's Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation. The vessels are believed to be a wooden barge, a wood steamer and what could be the only known example of an 1880s scow, a flat bottomed steam vessel for transporting goods and passengers.
Soundings by the Innerspace Exploration Team show a pipeline, a dock, the burnt out hull of the Fresno, well outlined ships (one) & (two), a sail boat, the F4F Wildcat, the SNJ-5, and the PB4Y-2.
Also see Wikipedia pages Lake Washington, Union Bay, the 520 floating bridge, Lake Forest Park, Kenmore, Juanita, Kirkland, Medina, Bellevue, Renton, and Seattle.
The Pan American Office site, just north of Sand Point, is still unused ground. I wonder who owns it? Click on the link there. LCVP
One interesting source is