After more than 40 years in service, HMCS Algonquin began in its final voyage today.
The decommissioned ship was towed out of CFB Esquimalt to begin a 7,600 nautical mile trip to Nova Scotia.
The Iroquois-class destroyer will travel via the Panama Canal to Liverpool, N.S. where it will be dismantled.
RJ MacIsaac Marine Construction won the $39 million contract to dispose of both the Algonquin and HMCS Protecteur.
No Victoria or West Coast shipyards bid for the job.
The same two ships were involved in a collision during training exercises while en route to Hawaii in 2013.
The Algonquin sustained significant damage.
The ship, commissioned in November 1973, took part in more than 20 multinational exercises before being officially retired by the Royal Canadian Navy last June.
“It is sort of a sad day for all those people who sailed on the vessel over the years,” said project manager Mike Stege.
Algonquin is expected to arrive in Nova Scotia in mid to late June.
“The only thing you can’t control is the weather,” said Stege.
“so if we say 40 or 50 days, it could be 60 or 70 days depending on the tow conditions as we go around.”
HMCS Protecteur left Esquimalt in late February and arrived in Nova Scotia on April 23rd.