STS Lord Nelson to Visit Halifax Aug 2/3

STS Lord Nelson, will visit Halifax this August 2/3. This three-masted barque is one of two tall ships that are part of the Jubilee Sailing Trust, a registered charity founded in 1978 in the U.K.

The JST takes both disabled and able-bodied men and women to sea, to not only teach them how to crew a tall ship, but to promote equality, raise awareness and correct misconceptions around disability. The further aim of the JST is to offer the program at rate accessible to all.

Two years in construction, Lord Nelson was launched in 1986 in Southampton, England. Lord Nelson was built with the capability of sailing anywhere in the world with crews of mixed physical abilities aboard. She is on the Return leg of a Circumnavigation of the world.

She will tie up At Tall Ships Quay, and be open for tours
10-12 and 2-4


Schwalbe from Southampton. 1600miles off Course.

UPDATE:Normally a post doesn’t illicit urgent calls from the National Post. This one did, however, and so I went to talk to the Owners.

Schwalbe set sail from the Bahamas 32 days ago,with a plan to head to Bermuda, then great circle route to the UK. On the Way she encountered 60knot winds and high waves, and was blown 1600 nautical miles off course. She put into Halifax on Sunday. while underway the Container ship APL Tourmaline manged to transfer fuel and supplies via a 200′ line, and notify Canadian Authorities of the Schwalbe’s destination and eta. Another Vessel also was able to render assistance.

Still Noticeably shaken as he spoke to me, Charlie credits the boat with his survival at sea. Their ordeal cost them several pieces of rigging, including the Topmast which is snapped off. The plan is to sail Thursday for Lunenburg, where they will affect repairs, which they expect will take the remainder of the season.

Googleing told me the Following: Schwalbe was built in Germany in 1927, 2.25” Oak planks on Oak frames, its 57ft on the water line and about 80ft long Overall. She was once Used for fishing, and was cut in half and and an extra 4m added. as late as 2008 she was schooner riged, however the after mast was removed. I also found the video Below of her.


Amistad in Lunenburg

The Tall Ship Amistad arrived in Lunenburg this afternoon. She is built as a replica of the Slave ship Amistad Circa 1780.

She is in town for the filming of the TV mini series Book of Negro’s, which will happen in Lunenburg and Shelburne, with sailing in between. A coasting trade licence was required, and Was requested for the period between May 2 and May 18.

(File Photo)


Return of an old Friend – Tall Ship Liana’s Ransom

Today broght the arrival of the Scooner Liana’s Ransom. She is tied up at Sackville Landing. She worked as a tour boat in Halifax Between 2007 and 2010, before heading South and offerign tours out of the British Virgin Islands. She is on her way to Tall Ship Festival in  Miramichi NB (http://www.miramichitallships.ca/) May 31 – June 2

She will be Joined by PeaceMaker and Unicorn, Both Currently tied up in Lunnenburg, Pride of Baltimore II (Currenlty 90nm SW of Halifax) and HMCS Sumerside, and Theodore II

Liana’s Ransom is an 85 foot, steel hulled schooner built in Houston, Texas. Construction began in 1998, but she was not launched until 2002. She was bought by the current owners in the spring of 2005 in Seabrook, Texas. She was sailed home to Nova Scotia in the fall of 2006, the 2500 nautical mile voyage taking 20 days. Originally designed as a Staysail schooner, she was converted to a gaff rigged, square topsail schooner over the winter of 2006/2007.


Bounty Hearings

THE USCG is holding hearings today into the sinking of the Bounty. Our coverage of the Bounty Sinking can be found in our first post and Second Post.

The Chronical Hearld has the following stories:
Horrific last moments for Bounty victims
Christian family seeks truth

And will be Live Blogging via  Bounty captain’s competency at issue in Coast Guard hearing
Updates Below are based on that live blogging, and may be incomplete. G-Captain has a reporter at the hearings, and I will provide links to thier summary as well.

 UpdatesTestimony Day 1:
Chief Mate Testimony indicates that the Ships Stability Letter was not Followed/Accurate,and that bilges required regular pumping- once or twice every 4 hours. Modifications were made to the ship moving fuel tanks, and structure Aft during September/October refit, as well as replacing some above waterline planks. She also carried addtional lead balast aft.

On the 28th, making 10 knots, twice normal speed. sail damaged by wind, and is fureled. around 4pm, port fuel tank glass breaks, spilling fuel, port engine and generator go down. pumps running continuously, dirt and dust is accumulating in filters. Lack or port generator lead t ofuel starvation of starboard engine.

water was coming in between planks above waterline port side by main and mizzen masts, above engine and tank rooms. Imersion suits were put on when water was between decks. The ship rolled, and most were thrown off. Seas were 28feet, wind 40knots at time of capsizing.

G-Captain has a good summary of the days testimony.

Day 2
Today will feature a woman from the bounty office, as well as a representive of the shipyard who did work on the bounty before she sailed.

The bounties director of shoreside operations basically testified that. The ship was not a passenger vessel and only crew sailed aboard her. Bounty was surveyed in 2012 for the insurance company. The bounty had o written procedures, and most details of the ships operation were left up to the captain.

After a cg inspector who inspected the tank work testified. He declined to perform a full hull inspection as one was not required until 2015.

Next up was the director of Tallships America. He testified that walridge was competent, but he would not have sailed in those conditions.

Finallay a project manager from boothbay harbour shipyard testified. He stated and provided photos showing significant deterioration of hull frames and wet rotten and mouldy wood. O repairs were made and additional work would be done the next year. He advised walbridge not to sail in heavy weather. The bad areas were only 6 years old indicating a poorly executed repair at the booth bay yard.

Day 2 coverage via gCaptain

Day 3
The first witness of the day was an expert in measuring ships. he covered the issue of the Vessels tonnage certificate. Basically the rules for measuring the volume within the ship. with the staircase removed, the ship was over 300tons, and would require a load line certificate, which would require her to undergo a more stringant examination, and require all defcencies to be repaired. with the stair in place, the bounty was 266tons, and was clear.

 Day 3 also brought the testimony of the former Bothbay shipyard manager. He testified that there was damage, however he had seen much worse, and felt the repairs were sufficient. Having worked with woodenships fro the previous 40 years, he had been involved with the 2001 reft where thebellow waterline planking was replaced with oak, and the 2007 refit, where the above waterline planking was replaced with fir.

The Last witness of the Day was the bountys marine surveyor, and Naval architect. he testified that he designed the pump system, and survyed it, he was also friends with captain wallbridge, and they spoke frequently. He felt he was not in a conflict of interest. He was requested to perform a survey for the insurance company. He spent a day onboard, and did a cursory inspection, and testified he would need to do more, but it is unclear if he ever communicated this with anyone.

Day 3 Coverage at gCaptain


Tall Ship Caledonia Update

The tall ship Caledonia has spent the past several years in lunenburg. She was refit, and then her owner went bankrupt, leaving the vessel in the care of Caterpillar Financial Services, who financed the work. The vessel was moved to toronto, but appears to have not been sold.

I have been told that the vessel may have been moved to reduce the cost of maintaining her. Certainly fresh watter will be easier on the hull.As well electricty costs were cited – As the ship must be heated to keep condensation from forming and rotting the steal hull from the inside.

if you want to buy her, 12 million will do. details at tallship4sale.com.

Updated 28/12 2009 File Photo at Left


Tall Ship Bounty In Trouble

For cleanliness, this post will continue where yesterdays left off.
To Recap, The Bounty ran into trouble Sunday night, Monday morning the crew took to life rafts, and the Bounty Sank. 14 of 16 were resuced by the Coast Guard. Claudene Christian Was found later in the day, and died yesterday evening. The Captain Robin Walbridge is still missing.

 USCG Released Photos of Bounty.
 Photos by U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Tim Kuklewski.

Update 1111ADTVIA Gcaptain A Search Update:

The crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Elm, a 225-foot buoy tender homeported in Atlantic Beach, N.C., arrived on scene at approximately 7:15 p.m. Monday and began searching for Walbridge.

The crews aboard the HC-130 Hercules aircraft and the MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., secured their searches for the night at approximately 7:30 p.m. Monday.

A crew aboard an HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircraft from Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater, Fla., began a four-hour search at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday, and a Hercules aircrew from Air Station Clearwater began a morning search at approximately 7:15 a.m.

 The Coast Guard Cutter Gallatin, a 378-foot high-endurance cutter homeported in Charleston, S.C., is en route.

 The Coast Guard’s is searching an area approximately 1,350 square nautical miles.The water temperature is 77 degrees, air temperature is 67 degrees, seas are 15 feet, and the winds are 42 mph.

UPDATE 1127ADT HMS Bounty Facebook Page:

We are mourn the loss of Bounty’s crewmember Claudene Christian and Pray for the continued efforts to rescue our Beloved Captain, Robin Walbridge.

A RELIEF FUND has been established by past crew members for donations to the families of Claudene Christian and Captain Robin Walbridge, along with the 14 surviving members of the crew, who lost everything in the tragic loss of the HMS Bounty.

Much Appeciated Donations can be sent to via PayPal

UPDATE 1130ADT: Tallshipbounty.org website is down – Probably exceeded their bandwith from their WEBHost.
Note On Captains Qualifications:
Captain Walbridge holds a Master 1600 Ton License and has been involved with square rigged ships since 1993. A USCG 1600 Ton Certificate requires the following experiance 1440 days with 720 days on vessels over 100 gross tons and 720 days as master, mate or equivalent while holding license with 360 days as licensed master, mate or equivalent on vessels over 100 gross tons.


TODAY Show interviewed the Rescuers Coast guard Lieutenant Commander Steve Bonn, Lieutenant Jenny Fields and Petty Officer Daniel Todd discuss the daring rescue mission.


UPDATE 31/10 0900ADT – No New updates. USCG Continued Searching last night.

Also, Tall Ships America (Sailtraining.org) Released a Statement Yesterday:

30 October 2012
To the Membership of Tall Ships America:
Certainly everyone in the sailing ship community will have heard that HMS BOUNTY has been lost off Cape Hatteras.  Of the sixteen persons reportedly aboard at the time, we understand that one individual has perished, and that fourteen others were rescued, thanks to the exemplary courage and skill of Coast Guard search and rescue personnel.  It appears that the vessel’s master, Robin Walbridge, is missing, and the search continues.

We are certain that everyone in the in the community sends their thoughts, prayers, and best wishes to the family of the individual who perished, to the rescued members of the ship’s company and their families, and to the brave Coast Guard team who carry our hopes for Captain Walbridge.
There is currently much speculation about the loss of the vessel.  We believe that further speculation is not helpful, especially in view of the respect that is due to the individuals whose lives are directly affected by these tragic events.  Tall Ships America does not have any factual information to add, but notes that there will surely be an official inquiry that will assemble much more complete information than is available to anyone now.   We are confident that our membership, if called upon, will cooperate with that inquiry in the full spirit of professionalism upon which the sail training movement depends.

For now, we appeal to our members to lend their thoughts and support to the people of BOUNTY and their families, to join us in thanking the Coast Guard rescue team for their heroism on behalf of our colleagues, and to sustain hopes for Captain Walbridge’s safe return.

Michael J. Rauworth, Chairman Bert Rogers, Executive Director

UPDATE 0927ADT: VIA Chronicle Herald
USCG confirms Search for Captain is Ongoing. One of the rafts flipped, dumping 3 in the water. One was able to stay with the raft and be rescued, the Captain and Christian were seperated.

Update NOV 1: USCG Release – Search Continues

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard continues its search Thursday for the missing captain of the HMS Bounty approximately 200 miles southeast of Hatteras, N.C.
Missing is Robin Walbridge, 63.
The crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Gallatin, a 378-foot high-endurance cutter homeported in Charleston, S.C., along with an HC-130 Hercules crew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., continue to search for Walbridge.
“As of now, our intent is to continue searching for the missing person,” said Capt. Doug Cameron, the chief of incident response for the Coast Guard 5th District. “This is still an active search, not a recovery effort. Factors such as fitness of the member, weather conditions, survival equipment and the results from previous searches are taken into consideration to determine how long the Coast Guard will search.”
The Coast Guard is searching an area approximately 1,200 square nautical miles.
The water temperature is 79 degrees, air temperature is 62 degrees, seas are 4 feet, and the winds are 30 mph.

(Image bellow Shows USCG Search Area)

The search for Capt Walbridge of HMSBounty has been suspeneded pending further information.

USCG Release:

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard suspended its search Thursday for the missing captain of the HMS Bounty 200 miles southeast of Hatteras, N.C.
Missing is Robin Walbridge, 63.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the Walbridge and Christian families,” said Capt. Doug Cameron, the chief of incident response for the Coast Guard 5th District. ”Suspending a search and rescue case is one of the hardest decisions we have to make.”
  The following Coast Guard assets assisted in the search:

  • HC-130 Hercules aircrews from Elizabeth City, N.C. and Clearwater, Fla.
  • MH-60 Jayhawk crews from Air Station Elizabeth City
  • Coast Guard HC-144 Ocean Sentry crews from Miami, Fla.
  • Crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Elm, a 225-foot buoy tender homeported in Atlantic Beach, N.C.
  • Crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Gallatin, a 378-foot high-endurance cutter homeported in Charleston, S.C.

Coast Guard crews searched more than 90 hours, covering approximately 12,000 overlapping square nautical miles in the Atlantic Ocean since the Bounty’s crew abandoned ship Monday morning.

UPDATE Nov 2: 0845

Chronicle Herald Article “Bounty Captain Talked about chasing Huricanes” Includes a Video of the Interview. In It, Lightner then asked him if he’d ever run into stormy seas.
“We chase hurricanes,” Walbridge answered. “You try and get up as close to the eye of it as you can, and you stay down in the southeast quadrant. And when it stops, you stop.”
“You don’t want to get in front of it, you want to stay behind it, but you’ll also get a good ride out of a hurricane.”

UPDATE NOV 2: 0947 ADTUS Coast Guard to conduct investigation into HMS Bounty sinking

USCG Release:

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – Rear Adm. Steven Ratti, the Coast Guard 5th District commander, ordered a district formal investigation Thursday to determine the cause of the sinking of the Tall Ship Bounty, a three-masted sailing ship, 90 miles southeast of Hatteras, N.C., Monday, which resulted in the death of one crewmember, and one crewmember who remains missing.
A district formal investigation consists of a Coast Guard investigating officer who will receive evidence and testimony using formal rules and procedures and is convened when the information to be derived has considerable regional significance, or may indicate vessel class problems or areas of technical importance.
The district formal investigation will probe every aspect of the accident and will determine as closely as possible:

  1. the cause of the accident;
  2. whether there is evidence that any failure of material or equipment was involved or contributed to the casualty;
  3. whether there is evidence that any act of misconduct, inattention to duty, negligence, or willful violation of the law on the part of any licensed or certificated person contributed to the casualty;
  4. whether there is evidence that any Coast Guard or other government agency personnel caused or contributed to the casualty; and
  5. whether the accident should be further investigated by a Marine Board of Investigation.

The Investigating Officer, Cmdr. Kevin M. Carroll, is the chief of the Coast Guard 5th District Marine Inspections and Investigations Branch and will be assisted by investigating officers from Coast Guard Sector North Carolina in Wilmington, N.C.
Coast Guard investigations of marine casualties and accidents are for the purpose of taking appropriate measures for promoting safety of life and property and are not intended to fix civil or criminal responsibility.
A district formal investigation often takes several months to properly complete.

UPDATE: Nov 5 0852AST

Gcaptains Maritime Monday feature today is dedicted to the Bounty


National Geographic video of her first voyage in 1960

UPDATE 06/11 1243AST – ABC’s Good Morning America Interview with Rescued Crew.

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