1. Rob40
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    Rob40 Active Member

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    Where/How would you hide a submarine in the Mediterranean sea?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Rob40, Jun 3, 2016.

    Setting: 1945-46, post-war.

    Where would you hide a ship in the Mediterranean? Specifically, not so much a ship but a Sub. Either way it's going to be nearly 200 feet long (about 60m). Is there a foresty/shrubby/muddy coastline area or a mudy inlet of an island in the middle, either way a place nobody pays attention to? The plan is for it to drift away in a storm and become lodged somewhere, who knows, but barely visible.

    At issue is the predominant sandy beach resort and rocky cliff-like coastline Google maps seems to show.

    Ideas and thoughts? Especially from anyone whose spent time in the region?
    Thanks.
     
  2. A lake.
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    A lake. Member

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    Never been there but there are Basalt sea caves near croatia
     
  3. A lake.
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    A lake. Member

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  4. Rob40
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    Rob40 Active Member

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    Ahh, thank you for that. My concern is for tidal damage knocking it against rock walls and the like, hence a preference for muddy inlets or shrub and tree saturated areas, but i so do like the basalt cave!
     
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  5. psychotick
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    psychotick Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi,

    So it's not so much deliberately hidden but simply lost? If you were going to deliberately hide it I'd be looking for a subsea cavern of some sort. But if it's just lost in 1945 it gets beached perhaps in a swamp. With no power assuming it's still working, there's no noise to be picked up. No one's going to be looking for it with metal detectors either. And there's no satellite surveillance either. If it gets covered with dirt / mud and trees grow, in time it would become forever lost.

    Cheers, Greg.
     
  6. Mumble Bee
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    Mumble Bee The writer formerly known as Chained. Contributor

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    0/10 people look for submarines in the sky.
    Just sayin.
     
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  7. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    Sorry to torpedo the "basalt sea cave", but both the Blue Grotto in Capri, and its Croatian namesake were sufficiently famous tourist attractions in Victorian times (that in Capri since Roman times) as not to be places where something would remain unnoticed for long - especially as both are small enough that the sub would be sticking out!

    As far as the "predominant sandy beach resort" goes, bear in mind that such tourism only really sprang up since 1945 ("With the gradual decline of visits to British seaside resorts after the Second World War, Thomas Cook & Son began promoting foreign holidays (particularly Italy, Spain, and Switzerland) in the early 1950s"), so washing it up on the beach nowhere near a major town is your best hope. I'd suggest North Africa.
     
  8. Sack-a-Doo!
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    Sack-a-Doo! Contributing Member Contributor

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    Why not just make something up? Look on Google Earth, find a spot that's uninhabited, and make up the coast line features you need to make the story work.

    People do it all the time. ;)
     
  9. newjerseyrunner
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    newjerseyrunner Contributing Member

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    Anywhere at the surface. That's why U-boats were so dangerous, you couldn't see them until they were right up on top of you. The waves at the surface make a lot of distortion that sonar at the time would not be able to peer through. Even modern sonar does not read ships on the surface very well. In the USA, huge amounts of cocaine comes into California from Mexico via remote control submarines sitting just below the surface.
     
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  10. Malisky
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    Malisky Fuzz Overdriver Contributor

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    How about somewhere in the Aegean Sea? There are so many islands and islets over there that it makes for a good hiding spot. It's not muddy though. I've never seen a muddy sea. Except if you mean sandy. Also in the Aegean, there are some islands that are hollow underneath. It is said that Koufonisia took their names because of their hollowness. (Koufio = hollow, Nisi = island). It is also said that pirates used to go there in order to store their goods.
     
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  11. A lake.
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    A lake. Member

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    Ok so if you were to blow up the basalt cave somewhere in your story you could make it any size or even location, if you destroy it would be plausible that it could have existed. (Ok I admit it I just really like those Basalt caves.):D
     
  12. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    So, the Mediterranean is a pretty rocky/beachy coastline, but a bit of poking around Google Maps turned up a few possibilities that might meet your needs, depending on the backstory and who needs to find said submarine.

    1) The Venetian Lagoon: So, this is an enclosed inlet that forms one of the only weird, shielded patch of shallow mucky water in the Med. I can see this working under certain circumstances, but you're going to have two challenges: explaining how it got into the lagoon in the first place, and explaining why nobody has found it, given the fact that city of Venice is smack in the middle of the lagoon. But I can see it being workable. There's also a number of smaller lagoons in that part of Italy, like the Marano Lagoon - so not finding it there would be more plausible.

    2) The Nile Delta: So, River Deltas are going to be your main source of swampiness along coastlines. There's only one big delta emptying into the Med, and that's the Nile. You could probably pull this off, but if you're writing a European-based story, you'd have to figure out how to get it to Egypt.

    3) The Danube Delta: So, this is my favorite option but it's also cheating. Remember I said the Nile is the only major river delta emptying into the Med? It is, but the Danube empties into the Black Sea, which is part of the greater Mediterranean structure. Of course, as with the Venetian Lagoon, you'd need to explain how the thing got into the Black Sea. And, as with the Nile, if your story isn't already in Romania, you'd need to get it there.
     
  13. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    So, poking around Google Street View - of the three locations I mentioned, the Danube Delta would definitely be the easiest "I can totally hide a ship here" option.

    I could definitely hide a ship here, or here, or even here. But especially here.

    This is the Marano Lagoon in Italy - could also be workable - but it's really flat and not overgrown
     
  14. Rob40
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    Rob40 Active Member

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    I lile those places, however my gmaps takes me to places in the black sea, where getting to the med is pretty much sealed off. Those are the marshy types of places im looking for.
     
  15. agasfer
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    Best places would be in international waters, because if you are within the territorial waters, real or imagined (some countries have self-proclaimed limits going beyond internationally recognized limits) of any country, there is a good chance that your sub would be discovered. Not certainty, though, so if you want it inside the territorial waters, pick a place that is not a sensitive spot or by a country which has a lousy surveillance system. Stay away from the eastern end of the Med. Of course, to hide your sub that way, you are going to have to have the crew use diving suits and pressure compartments to get out of it when hiding it for a while, and a new crew use diving suits to get back in, but those are details.
     
  16. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yeah I had explained that it was in the Black Sea, which is hard but doable relative to the med. The only other options I found were the Nile Delta and the lagoons in the Venice area of Italy. But neither of those give you what that Danube Delta on the Black Sea gives you, and there are ways to get from the Black Sea to the Med through the Bosphorus
     
  17. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    That's the original post.

    Navigating the Bosphorus is hard enough (currents, etc.) when you're in control of where you're going, so just washing up in the Black Sea unlikely.

    And doing a SPECTRE-type operation to build your own hidden-sub garage???

     
  18. JoetheLion
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    JoetheLion Member

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    Trouble with the Med is that it's been incredibly busy for thousands of years. I'd suggest looking to the western Med where it meets the Ionian or the Aegean, as the Greek coastline there is dotted with thousands of tiny islands and would have been far less developed then than it is now.
     
  19. Lew
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    Lew Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you get past the Turks! Submarines must go through the Bosphorus, by international agreement, on the surface, it is way too heavily trafficked to transit unobserved. Submerged submarines try will likely attract a great deal of unwanted attention, probably consisting of SUS charges, basically hand grenades saying unmistakably 'surface, now!' in every language spoken by submariners! If that doesn't work SUS will probably be followed by direct attack weapons to destroy the sub.
     
  20. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    Oh, true. But we're in thriller-world here and we're talking about a hidden submarine that's been languishing unnoticed for decades. There's really not a very good place to hide the thing on the Med coast, so I threw out an option on the Black Sea that has the right properties, even if putting it there would require some serious narrative gymnastics. Putting it anywhere marshy probably requires narrative gymnastics.

    Although - another thought would be to stash it up a river somewhere - but even then you don't have a lot of major rivers that empty into the Med (the Nile again being the exception). There are a few that empty into the Black Sea (Danube, Dnieper), but that's really about it.

    Whoever mentioned cave systems earlier might have been on the right track. Those might be easier to find.
     
  21. Lew
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    Lew Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you are talking decades, then I would use the Greek islands, perhaps one in which the Germans built a big pen in a cave, of course never used, and long forgotten.
     
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  22. Lew
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    Lew Contributing Member Contributor

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    Italy would work also
     

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