I was reading about the Brest submarine pen/bunker complex and looking at pictures of it. I was even able to locate a set of blueprints of the base here. But because of the poor quality of the image though I am unable to discern details on which way the submarines are facing in the dock, but it looks like they are backed in.

What I am unable to locate an answer to is how did the U-boats enter and exit the submarine pen. Did they use tug boats or harbor pilots, or did they back in so they could quickly get out if they were attacked or did they go in facing forwards?

I have checked all of the usual sources such as wikipedia on uboats, Brest, and submarine pens, in addition to finding the above linked source and several other ww2 historical sites, but none with this answer.

  • 1
    Not much help, I know, but it does look from that picture that the u-boats' prows are facing out towards the sea. Mar 18 '20 at 13:51
  • It isn’t like Brest was under constant 24 hour attack. It was well defended, particularly against daylight low level planes that would have a prayer of hitting a manoevering submarine, even in a harbor.
    – Jon Custer
    Mar 18 '20 at 14:00
  • @GeoffAtkins - I sort of think that way too, I was searching for top-down images of u-boats but could not find any that matched that outline.
    – ed.hank
    Mar 18 '20 at 14:19
  • 1
    It's not of the boxes at Brest, it's Bordeaux, but the second picture on this page shows a u-boat that would have had to come out backwards (you can just make out the rudders in the bottom right of the image), but I don't know if that was common practice. forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=229910 Mar 18 '20 at 14:23
  • 2
    Maybe this video would help.
    – justCal
    Mar 18 '20 at 21:55

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