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Culture and heritage

As the name suggests, Beware Reef represents a dangerous object for navigation and has resulted in a number of wrecks over the last 150 years. The site is clearly marked on navigational charts.

Shipwrecks that have occurred on Beware Reef located within the marine sanctuary include:

  • Ridge Park (1878): Cargo steamer that ran into the reef due to inattentiveness by the Captain. The widely scattered remains of the SS Ridge Park include the straight stemmed triangular bow structure, winch, a squashed boiler, the engine, propeller and broken up hull plating in 7 - 24 metres depth on the north-western side of Beware Reef.
  • SS Auckland (1871): A iron hulled cargo and transport vessel that ship ran into the reef due to a compass that had not been adjusted after considerable modification to the ship. The SS Auckland has now collapsed down the reef slope with the result that the bow and rudderpost of this once 65 metre long vessel now lie 25 metres from each other in 19-26 metres depth. Of particular interest are the modified engine and four bladed propeller (two blades are broken), with propeller shaft lying on top as it has bent back over the rudder/ rudder post, and the triangular bow section lying on its port side with the gracefully curved clipper stem cemented into the reef.
  • Albert San (1915): A steel hulled fishing trawler that hit the reef due to faulty navigation. None of the wreck is visible on the Reef.