baychimo

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Lost 81 years ago, the Baychimo is a real life ghost ship of the Northwest territories and Alaska. In 1931, this Hudson Bay Company steel cargo ship was thoroughly stuck in an ice pack. The crew was ready to wait out the winter in a makeshift camp set up nearby, but on the night of November  24 a violent blizzard hit and there was no sign of the ship when weather cleared. it was assumed the Baychimo had sunk in the storm.

Just a few days later, it was spotted floating over seventy kilometres away. the ship was stripped of its valuables and expected to sink in the winter. But over the following decades, there have been dozens of sightings of the ship still drifting along the Northwest coast, all salvage attempts failed, one of which had a group trapped on-board for over a week due to an unexpected storm.

The last sighting was in1969, and it is unknown what ultimately became of the Baychimo. 

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The Baychimo - A 1,322 ton steam ship built in 1914 in Sweden.
Based in Scotland, it was sent across the Atlantic to the north coast of Canada.
The ship regularly traveled to Alaska and British Columbia transporting goods, passengers, and trading furs with the Inuit who lived along the Beaufort Sea across the frigid, icy waters of the Arctic.

On October 1, 1931 Baychimo was making a return trip to Vancouver when winter arrived sooner than expected. Baychimo became stuck fast in pack-ice brought on by freezing temperatures, strong winds and blizzards. Captain John Cornwell and the crew were helpless to do anything except wait, about a kilometer from the village of Barrow, Alaska (a set of log cabins constructed by the Company to provide shelter).

By October 15, the Hudson Bay Company sent airplanes to rescue twenty-two of the crew. The captain and fourteen other crew members stayed behind, building a shelter on the ice, prepared to stubbornly wait out the entire winter. Imagine their surprise when they awoke on November 25, the morning after a terrible blizzard, to find the Baychimo gone!

A few days later, a seal hunter spotted the ship adrift about forty-four miles (71 km) southwest. The crew managed to track down the Baychimo and boarded. After an examination of the Baychimo’s condition, the captain decided that it had been too badly damaged by its ordeal in the ice, and would soon break apart and sink, so the crew salvaged some of the valuable furs and the ship was abandoned.

The Baychimo was tougher than its captain had given it credit for, because it survived the winter and began its ascent into the annals of sea legend as a Ghost Ship.

By 1939 the company received reports of scores of sightings from eyewitnesses who had seen the drifting ghost ship. However, no one was able to catch up to, or board the Baychimo. It uncannily eluded capture, giving the eerie impression it did not want to be boarded. The last sighting occurred in 1969 by the crew of US oil freighter Manhattan while crossing the Northwest Passage. Despite recent searches in 2006, the ship’s ultimate fate remains unknown.

The Baychimo, a 1,322 ton steam ship owned by the Hudson Bay Trading Company, regularly traveled to Alaska and British Columbia transporting goods and passengers, and fur trading with the Inuit who lived along the Beaufort Sea.

On October 1, 1931, Baychimo was making a return trip to Vancouver. She’d completed a run to Victoria Island, and her hold was stuffed with furs. Unfortunately for captain John Cornwell and the crew, winter arrived sooner than expected with freezing temperatures, strong winds, and the threat of blizzards. Baychimo became stuck fast in the pack-ice, and the crew were helpless to do anything except wait.

Luck seemed to be on the captain’s side since two days later, the ice shifted and Baychimo broke free, but Dame Fortune was fickle. The ship continued to be trapped, then released by the thickening ice. By October 15, the Hudson Bay Company sent airplanes to rescue twenty-two of the crew, but the captain and fourteen other crew members stayed behind, building a shelter on the ice. Imagine their surprise when they awoke on November 25, the morning after a terrible blizzard, to find Baychimo gone.

A few days later, a seal hunter told Cornwell he’d spotted the ship adrift about forty-four miles (71 km) southwest. As time passed, the company continued to receive reports from eyewitnesses who had seen the drifting ghost ship. By 1939, scores of sightings were reported. However, no one was able to catch up to Baychimo, which continued to uncannily elude pursuit. The last sighting occurred in 1969. Despite recent searches, the ship’s ultimate fate remains unknown.

“On November 24 a powerful blizzard struck, and after it abated there was no sign of the Baychimo. Her captain decided she must have broken up during the storm and been sunk. A few days later, however, an Inuit seal hunter told him that he had seen the Baychimo about 45 mi (72 km) away from their position. The crewmen tracked the ship down, but deciding she was unlikely to survive the winter, they removed the most valuable furs from the hold to transport by air. The Baychimo was abandoned.

Over the next few decades she was sighted numerous times. People managed to board her several times, but each time they were either unequipped to salvage her or were driven away by bad weather. The last recorded sighting was by a group of Inuit in 1969, 38 years after she was abandoned. The Baychimo’s ultimate fate is unknown and she is now presumed sunk.”

From 10 Strange Little-Known Unsolved Mysteries

at Listverse.com

In 1931, the cargo steamer Baychimo ran into a blizzard and got trapped in the ice. The crew camped out on the ice and, when they woke up in the morning, the Baychimo was gone.

Over the years there have been dozens of sightings of the ghostly ship, always in a different place, but it has never been recovered.

Click here to read the list!