Thursday, December 6, 2018


6 December 2018: A good pal and tall ship sailor just sent me this and I could not resist sharing it with my readers.... think of it as a gift for years of faithfully slogging through some pretty dry posts! And laugh - even laughing out loud is permitted! 

Golden Hind Tour 

 Until next time,
                                 Fair Winds. 
                                       Old Salt 

PS Maritime Maunder has now passed 78,000  readers! We are amazed!  OS

Sunday, December 2, 2018


2 December 2018: Well, once again, I am late but with good cause (in my opinion!) - I have been kind of "hors de combat" with a total knee replacement and off my feet for a short while. I know, using a computer doesn't require standing per se, but getting to it does! So that's my excuse and I am sticking to it. Following is an interesting (to us) article I came  across recently which sort of fits our model for Maritime Maunder. For those of you who might be "geographically challenged," Ile Sainte-Marie is a couple of miles off the coast of Madagascar.

For around 100 years, Ile Sainte-Marie was the off-season home of an estimated 1,000 pirates. A recently discovered map from 1733 refers to it simply as “the island of pirates.” Situated near the East Indies trade route, the beautiful tropical island’s numerous inlets and bays made it the perfect place to hide ships. 

Pirates from all over the world lived in wooden huts, adorned with flags that signified which captain’s “crew” they belonged to. It was a pirate’s paradise. There were local women to satisfy their lust, and plenty of tropical fruit to satisfy their hunger.
When one of the pirates died, they were buried on a scenic, palm shaded hilltop cemetery overlooking the water. Today, 30 headstones remain, including a few sketched with a skull and/or cross bones, the international symbol of piracy. 

Legend has it that the notorious William Kidd is buried in a large black tomb in the cemetery, sitting upright as punishment for his dastardly deeds. He was actually buried in England, but his legendary ship, the Adventure Galley (rediscovered in 2000), was left docked near the Island, and his booty is said to be buried somewhere in the surrounding sea. In fact, the prospect of undiscovered treasure, from at least half a dozen documented shipwrecks off the coast, continues to lure adventurous explorers to this very day.
The pirates were off Ile Sainte-Marie by the late 1700s, when the French forcibly seized the island. It was returned to Madagascar in 1960. Today, Ile Saint-Marie is a thriving tourist destination. The crumbling cemetery, its graves half covered by tall, swaying grass, is open to the public. It is an ironically peaceful and still place, filled with the bones of violent and restless men.


So if you find yourself in the neighborhood of Madagascar with time on your hands, it sounds like a day trip to Ile Sainte-Marie might be of interest. 

Until next time, (and yes, my knee is healing nicely; thank you for asking! 

                      Fair Winds, 
                       Old Salt

Thursday, November 22, 2018


22 November 2018: Last year, in a spate of disasters that beset the U.S. Navy, civilian merchant vessels ran afoul of Navy Destroyers. Now it's happened again, only this time, to a Norwegian Frigate in essentially home waters.This story his been in the national news across the world but here it is somewhat encapsulated for you with a consolidation of images from before, during, and after the tragedy. From an assortment of sources;

In the early hours of Thursday morning, the Helge Ingstad was approaching the Sture oil terminal near Bergen, headed inbound for Haakonsvern. The Aframax tanker Sola TS was departing the terminal and headed outbound. According to local reports, Sola TS observed the Ingstad visually shortly after leaving the dock and called her via VHF to determine her intentions. The VTS station at Fedje also corresponded with the Ingstad. Despite the radio communications, the two vessels collided at 0403 hours, damaging the frigate above and below the waterline and injuring eight of her crewmembers.  

The Ingstad was disabled by the accident, and the Norwegian Navy took the decision to push her onto the shore near the Sture terminal in order to prevent her from settling into deeper water. Her crew abandoned ship without further incident and mustered at Haakonsvern for debriefing. 

The Norwegian military has declined requests for comment about the cause of the incident, citing an ongoing investigation.
The Norwegian Armed Forces are managing the salvage operation, in cooperation with Norway's Coastal Administration. The Norwegian Civil Aviation Commission and the local police are investigating the cause of the casualty.  

an attempt to stabilize the wreck with linbes run ashore

After continued sturggles, the Frigate is lost. While salvage remains a possibility, the Norwegian government has yet to offer a statement on it.

To our U.S. readers, and U.S. residents around the world who follow Maritime Maunder, we wish you a most happy Thanksgiving - and try to be grateful for what you have, not carping about what you don't have (and probably don't need!)

Until next time, 
Fair Winds,
       Old Salt