Tuesday, 27 April 2010

A Tall ship and a race

Old and new were berthed side by side in Kirkwall this evening.
The Statsraad Lehmkuhl alongside the Varagen.
The Earl Sigurd approaches.
After a quick back paddle to allow the Earl Sigurd in to berth we got a little closer to the tall ship.

The scale of the ship is awesome.
It is a familiar sight here and in the old part of the town the masts are the only thing bigger than the cathedral.
I can see the masts from the windows of my house, whose first owner was a sea captain.
It would have been an impressive sight even then, 120 years ago.
We rarely get to see it under sail.

A lucky few folk, stranded in Norway, hitched a lift back to Blighty on the ship's last voyage from Bergen recently.

With the wind and tide in our favour we made easy progress towards Thieves' Holm. After experiencing the spring tide on the approach to The String we turned for home. As the wind strengthened and the weather deteriorated the return journey was what an absent friend would have decribed as a 'grunt'.

Nice boots!

It was time to head for shore and a cup of tea in NK's copious shelter.
Yes we did get picked up!... although.... for a short while.... we wondered if we should phone the pub to remind them.

(including the run back to the car - thanks Peter)


  1. Mmmmm.....frolicking in the shelter looked like lots of fun!

  2. It was a welcome alternative to F5 wind and rain for a while.
    Its all very well talking about shelters and carrying them in your boat but its good to demonstrate to new paddlers how effective these things are and the options you can have if conditions get challenging - that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!

  3. Impressive images of a magnificent ship. It brought back memories of a three day trip, last May, when we circumnavigated nearby Saltspring Island. As we paddled into a magical little cove on Prevost Island to find a campsite, we discovered a (smaller) tall ship, the "Pacific Grace" out of Victoria...and dozens of students who looked, for all the world, like pirates! We could well imagine ourselves transported back in time! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Many years ago I lived in Victoria and visited Saltspring frequently. I did get on the water from time to time, but never paddled there. I can imagine how great that would be!