Historic shipwreck exposed on Yorke Peninsula

News article |

The iconic Ethel shipwreck at Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Parkhas again been fully exposed after recent winter storms, providing a spectacular sight for visitors to the park.

Natural Resources Northern and Yorke Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National ParkRanger in Charge, Mark Davison, said that the wreck will continue to be exposed for the coming few months until seasonal summer sand movement re-covers the majority of the wreck until next winter.

"We encourage visitors to come and see the fully visible wreck, walk among its exposed ruins and learn about South Australia’s rich maritime history," Mr Davison said.

"The 113-year-old shipwreck is located on the southern tip of Yorke Peninsula at the location now known as Ethel Beach, within Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Park."

The Ethel was a three masted iron barque of 711 tons and built in Sunderland, England in 1876. On 2nd January, 1904, after damaging its rudder at nearby Cape Spencer in a south-westerly gale, it was driven ashore, with the loss of one life.

The coastal steamer S.S. Ferret attempted to aid the Ethel without success and notified authorities. Ironically the Ferret ran aground on the same beach 16 years later on the 14th February 1920. The boiler of the Ferret can be clearly seen 100 meters south of the Ethel wreck.

The Ethel wreck and S.S. Ferret form part of the Investigator Strait Shipwreck Trail, the stretch of water which lies between southern Yorke Peninsula and Kangaroo Island, named by Captain Matthew Flinders on 27th March, 1802 in honour of his ship HMS Investigator.

Click here to learn more about the Investigator Strait Shipwreck Trail.

Visitors to the region should be aware that shipwrecks in South Australia are protected under the Historic Shipwrecks Act (1976) and people are prohibited from interfering with the wreck.

For more information about the Ethel wreck, as well as camping and heritage accommodation bookings at Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Park, visit www.parks.sa.gov.au or contact the Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National ParkVisitor Centre on 8854 3200.

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