From Columbus to Bermuda Triangle: top nautical riddles

The Bermuda Triangle
The Bermuda Triangle


Bermuda Triangle | Mysteries evolving around sea depths seem to be never ending, indeed, some truly intimidating as no clues are found, and some left to be unsolved as though intentionally, to be part of folklore or across-the-board stereotypes, just perfect to share with kids.

One of them, the famed Santa Maria, Columbus’ flagship wreckage seems to have been riddled at long last. It’s hard to believe, though, how many of the mysteries have already sunk into oblivion, rendered utterly impossible to solve, due to lack of evidence, or initiative. Radio VR has compiled a list of those that once made headlines globally and have been spreading from generation to generation by word of mouth.

Columbus’ wrecked ship found after 500 years

More than five centuries after Christopher Columbus’s flagship, the Santa Maria, was wrecked in the Caribbean, archaeologists tentatively assume they have finally discovered the shipwreck long buried on the sea bed off Haiti coast, in what seems to be a perfectly grand archeological happening ever!

The Bermuda Triangle
Columbus in The Bermuda Triangle

“All the geographical, underwater topography and archaeological evidence strongly suggests that this wreck is Columbus’ famous flagship, the Santa Maria,” shares his joy Barry Clifford, the leader of a recent reconnaissance expedition to the site, America’s top nautical archaeological investigator.

The Santa Maria, Niña and Pinta – these are the ships that led the Italian explorer’s 1492 expedition to the new world and are perfectly known to all since school years.

Though many feel skeptical about Columbus being the first European to set foot in north America, giving all the credit to the Vikings and their leader Leif Ericsson, allegedly the first settler in Newfoundland.


A full-fledged excavation of the site is now planned, with the support of the government of Haiti, which has already played a part in the investigation.

Bermuda Triangle mystery: Cyclops leave no traces behind

One of the first stories connected to the Triangle legend and the most famous ship lost in the region was the USS Cyclops which disappeared in 1918. The 542 foot long Cyclops was launched in 1910 and served as a collier ( a ship that carries coal) for the U.S. Navy during World War I. The vessel was on its way from Bahia, Salvador, to Baltimore, Maryland, but never arrived. After it had made an unscheduled stop at Barbados on March 3rd and 4th to take on additional supplies, it disappeared without a trace. No wreckage from the ship was ever found and no distress signal was received. The deaths of the 306 crew and passengers of the USS Cyclops remains the single largest loss of life in U.S. Naval history not directly involving combat.

While the sinking of the Cyclops remains a mystery, the incident could have happened anywhere between Barbados and Baltimore, not necessarily in the Bermuda area.

Proponents of the Bermuda Triangle theory point to the fact there was no distress call as evidence of a paranormal end for the vessel, but the truth is that wireless communication in 1918 proved unreliable and it can’t be ruled unusual for a rapidly-sinking vessel to not have sent a direct distress call before sinking.

Sulphur Queen tanker in sullen Atlantic waters

The SS Marine Sulphur Queen, a tanker ship carrying molten sulphur, disappeared off the southern coast of Florida in 1963. 39-strong crew was all lost and no wreckage was ever found. Whatever the reasons may be and whatever the temptation to link it to the Bermuda Triangle, but one thing is clear: the vessel was confirmed to be in deplorable shape and should have never gone to sea. Fires erupted with regularity on the ship. Also, this class of vessel was known to have a “weak back”, which means the keel would split when weakened by corrosion causing the ship to break in two.

Flight 19 saga

This is probably the most notorious story about the Bermuda Triangle. Vincent Gaddis put the tale into the same Argosy magazine article where he coined the term “Bermuda Triangle” in 1964 and the two have been connected ever since. Encounters of the Third Kind.

Back on 5 December 1945 five Avenger torpedo bombers traveled into the air from the Naval Air Station at Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at 2:10 in the afternoon. It was a routine practice mission and all those aboard were students except for the Commander, a Lt. Charles Taylor. Confused by the navigator, Taylor took his flight further and further to the north, making the Avengers actually travel further out to sea. The bombers vanished away totally unnoticed, even one of the search planes joining in the fate, strangely enough.

Has Flight 19 ever been found? Well, in 1991 five Avengers were found off the coast of Florida. But the plane’s ID numbers, however, showed resemblance with as many as 139 Avengers thought to have gone into the water off the coast of Florida during the war. So, those found were not the sought bombers after all.

It looks like the final resting place of the lost squadron and their crews is still a real Bermuda, or Devil’s Triangle mystery, alongside many more, still raising debate and inspiring horror stories.

Some adventure seekers have even attempted to challenge the Bermuda Triangle, namely Polish traveler Alexander “Olek” Doba, who began his Portugal-to-Florida trek in a kayak on 5 October 2013, but finally, after 2 months, lost all of his communications.

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