Benicia, California

Suisun Bay Ghost Fleet

The rusting remains of the largest assembled WWII fleet on the West Coast

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Standing at the ready since the end of WWII, this eerie ghost fleet once numbered as many as 350 ships.

Technically known as the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet (SBRF), the boats are theoretically part of an active reserve fleet, ready to head out in as few as 20 days in times of national emergency. The reality is a slowly decaying fleet, creaking and rusting as they await the scrapyard. Now greatly reduced in number, soon there will be fewer still.

Unfortunately, the long years of neglect and indecision turned these once proud fighters into near wrecks, with flaking paint polluting the waters, and locals complaining about them overstaying their welcome.

The most famous resident was the USS Iowa, a WWII battleship that once served as the transport vessel for President Roosevelt, and fought in the Pacific during both WWII and the Korean War. It was decommissioned in 1990, and there are hopes to turn it into a museum ship. She was recently removed to southern California to begin a new life as a museum ship.

For now, the fate of the rest of the fleet is unknown, with 10 ships still remaining.

  • Hours
    The ships are not open to the public. The fleet can be seen from shore in Benicia
  • Website
  • Address
    Benicia, California, 94510, United States
  • Cost
    Free
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Map/Directions
A good view of the fleet is at the vista point off Hwy 680, between Benicia and Fairfield. Take the Lake Herman Road Exit.
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