Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Age of Sail: Visitors around Guernsey 2013

So we’ve had quite a few antique / tall ship visitors to Guernsey this year, and I have been remiss to document them. Mostly I see them at 6:30am when I drop my wife off at work and cruise past the main harbour leisurely to delay my stupidly early arrival to school. Unfortunately I didn’t catch the name of many of them, and so don’t have any information.
Grey morning in Guernsey
Most recently the Jantje came calling, a schooner-brig from the Netherlands. According to one source she was built in the 1920’s. Her website 'Jantje' has information about her, including some nice pictures of her in full sail.

Jantje sailing past Sark
From her website
Next we have the GroƟherzogin Elisabeth a great example of a steel vessel from the end of the Age of Sail. A German freighter from 1909, she’s been around a bit, and there’s loads of information about her on her website 'Elisabeth'; apparently she was one of the earliest vessels fitted with a diesel engine; also, looking at the old photos, it appears she used to be fully square-rigged but nowadays seems to be gaff-rigged.

The Elisabeth sailing past my bedroom window
Just next to Castle Cornet in St. Peter Port
Note the original square-rig
This beautifully square-rigged barque is also German. The Alexander von Humboldt took the place of the ferry that morning, and I really regret not seeing her in full beautiful green sail. She started life being merely called Reserve and acting as a reserve ship – bless her. She saw action in 1945 when she was rammed by a Swedish vessel – and sank. She has a sister ship, the Alexander von Humboldt II built a few years ago. I don't think they have a website, but there's loads of information on their wikipedia entries and from Marine Traffic.
Taking the ferry berth

At full sail with her sister ship
Below are some other sailing vessels I’ve seen this year:

Beautiful vessel sporting the Saint Malo flag, cruising off the Breton town of Dinard
Unknown vessel drying her sails
Unknown square-rigged vessel in St. Peter Port beside other seasonal guests
Unknown vessel we passed between Jersey and Sark whilst on the ferry