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    Re: Virgin Rocks.
    From: George Huxtable
    Date: 2009 Jan 16, 21:08 -0000

    What a helpful resource Navlist is!
    I had asked about Virgin Rocks as a hazard, lying about 80 miles East of
    Cape Race, Newfoundland, on the Grand Banks; which took my interest, as I
    hadn't even heard of them before.
    Andres Ruiz provided an appropriate patch from a chart, showing  an isolated
    rock, just 4.3 metres below datum, surrounded by larger shoal patches at
    around 30 metres. There was no sign of any attempt to mark this danger
    (which lies very close to  a shipping track between East Coast ports of
    North America, and Northern Europe), and it would be very difficult to do
    so. Hard to plant any sort of fixed beacon on a rock that never uncovers,
    and hard to mark a hazard , with buoys which can be subject to ice.
    John Cole provided a pointer to the US Sailing Directions for Newfoundland,
    which warned of heavy concentrations of fishing vessels near Virgin Rocks,
    and of the breaking seas to be expected in the vicinity.
    I wonder how many craft have come to grief on Virgin Rocks. Particularly in
    days before radio aids, for craft sailing Westwards, when in the prolonged
    fogs that infest the area, celestial observations had been impossible. And
    yet, I don't recall any mention of Virgin Rocks as an important factor in
    the history of North Atlantic navigation. Was it?
    Taking note of the great number of vessels that ended their days on Sable
    Island, another hazard along the same ship track, one might expect a similar
    litter of wreckage around Virgin Rocks, though presenting a much smaller
    target than Sable Island.
    contact George Huxtable, at  george@hux.me.uk
    or at +44 1865 820222 (from UK, 01865 820222)
    or at 1 Sandy Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK.
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