Over The Waves: SS Thetis

Over The Waves: SS Thetis

This past week, I was invited to speak at the Crows Nest Officer’s Club about an interesting vessel with a checkered past. For 55 years, the SS Thetis sailed from the North Atlantic to the shores of Hawai’i, and North again to Alaska before ending up back off the shores of Newfoundland for the rest of her career. She had an incredible career, so read on to learn more!

Myself and Margaret Morris, Crow’s Nest President, posing in front of the Thetis‘ wheel.

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In The Harbour – M/V Arctic Sunrise

In The Harbour – M/V Arctic Sunrise

Just over a week ago, a new ship came sailing through the Narrows. The M/V Arctic Sunrise, operated by Greenpeace, arrived in St. John’s on August 3rd. Curious to learn what brought her here, I popped down and was able to chat with some members of her crew.

Ships Stats
Nationality: The Netherlands
Length: 49.5 metres
Beam: 11.5 metres
Draught: 5.3 metres
Weight: 1,478 tonnes
Crew: 16
Speed: 13 knots
Year: 1975

Built by Vaagen Verft in Norway in 1975, the Arctic Sunrise was originally christened as the sealer, PolarbjØrn. Read more

In The Harbour: Simón Bolívar

In The Harbour: Simón Bolívar

Since moving to Newfoundland, I’ve been fortunate enough to see a handful of tall ships come through the Narrows into St. John’s. Each one an ambassador from their home country, with special trimmings representing where they’ve come from, but all of them majestic reminders of a bygone era. Honestly, that awestruck feeling of seeing a tall ship in the harbour never goes away.

June 7th, 2016, was no exception, when this ship graced our harbour with its presence. Today, I’m writing about the tall ship Simón Bolívar.

IMG_2543
Figurehead on the bow of the Simón Bolivar.

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In The Harbour: M/V Boudicca

In The Harbour: M/V Boudicca

Ship Stats
Nationality: Bahamas
Length: 205.5 metres
Beam: 25.2 metres
Weight: 28,388 tonnes
Draught: 7.5 metres
Decks: 8
Cabins: 462
Capacity: 900
Crew: 329
Speed: 22 knots
Year: 1973

Cruise ship season 2016 continued on Friday with the arrival of the M/V Boudicca of the Fred. Olsen Cruise Line. Constructed in 1973 in the Wärtsilä Helsinki Shipyard, Helsinki, Finland, she has served many owners and operators in the last 40+ years.

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In The Harbour: M/V Balmoral

In The Harbour: M/V Balmoral

Ship Stats

Nationality: Bahamas
Length: 217.9m
Beam: 32.3m
Weight: 43,537 tonnes
Draught: 7.2m
Decks: 10
Capacity: 1,350
Crew: 471
Speed: 22 knots
Year: 1988

I’ve written about her previously, but today the M/V Balmoral was in St. John’s, kicking off the 2016 cruise ship season! While the weather was grey and dreary (and threatened snow more than once), any passengers I saw around seemed to be thoroughly enjoying their time here. Balmoral arrived around 8:00am, and sailed back out through the Narrows shortly after 2:00pm.

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Over the Waves: SS Anglo Saxon

Hi Everyone! I know it’s been awhile so let’s just jump right in, shall we?

As I’ve discussed before, and many of you will know, ships were once the only way for people to travel from Europe to North America. In the early years of these routes, ships would be filled as much as they could with passengers, cargo, and crew. Most of the time, these ships would make fairly uneventful crossings. However, when things went wrong, they went very, very wrong. One of these, while en route to Quebec, Canada, ran aground off the coast of Newfoundland with a loss of more than half her passengers and crew. This week, we’re looking at the wreck of the SS Anglo Saxon.

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Over the Waves: M/V Patrick Morris and F/V Enterprise

Over the Waves: M/V Patrick Morris and F/V Enterprise

One of the most important rules when it comes to being on the water is that if someone else is in trouble, and you can help, you do it. It doesn’t matter if you and the skipper on the other boat don’t get along, or if you’re competing for the same catch. If someone is in trouble, you help.

This is even more evident with this week’s story. The crew of a fishing boat got into trouble off the coast of Cape Breton, and radioed for help. Ships nearby responded, including a Canadian National Railway (CNR) railcar ferry that was tied up in North Sydney. Through a series of truly unfortunate events, however, this act of kindness and duty would result in some of the crew of the rescue vessel paying the ultimate price. This week, we look at the story of the F/V Enterprise and the M/V Patrick Morris.

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Over the Waves: SS Ahern Trader

Over the Waves: SS Ahern Trader

Shipwrecks litter the shores and banks of any coastal area. Sometimes they lie just below the surface, or as washed up wreckage on the shore. Occasionally the rusted out skeletons remain above the surface, serving as reminders of time past.

Previously I’ve covered the SS CharcotSS Florizel, SS KyleHMS Calypso and the SS Ethie, all wrecks that are visible from land. This week, we look at the wreck of a cargo ship on the shores of Gander Bay, the SS Ahern Trader.

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