Tag Archives: boats

Fishing boar

Fishing boar
The t and r are real close on this querty keyboard, so I mistyped boat as boar. But, then thought it was amusing enough to leave as the title for this photo - so there you have it, that there folks is what a fishing boar looks like.

Rubber Duck Rescue

Rubber Duck Rescue
Here in South Africa we have a few quirks in how we name things. A common quirk is that we call traffic lights "robots" without ever giving a thought to the fact that robots are something quite different - the kind of thing that may in fact have dire consequences for the world, as they did in Battlestar Galactica and Terminator.

Something else that I realised this evening is that we calmly refer to the type of boat in this photo (you know, one of those inflatable boats with big outboard motors, that wiz around our lakes, rivers, dams and coast lines) as a "rubber duck". No, I never said that they wiz around our bathtubs... and nope, we totally don't have a picture of a little yellow duck in our minds when we utter the words.

Do other people refer to these are rubber ducks?

A schooner called Spirit of Victoria

A schooner called Spirit of Victoria
Call me ignorant, but until now I had no idea that a vessel with this sail configuration is called a schooner and used the word "yacht" to generically refer to boats with sails.

Now, I'm not sure when a boat is a yacht - if perhaps it has more to do with the vessels purpose in life, or something else, but it's unlikely that it has anything to do with sails as modern luxury yachts often don't even have sails. If you do know, then don't hesitate - leave a comment please. :)

Fishing boats at night

Fishing boats at night
I visited the V&A Waterfront quickly on Thursday evening to replenish my depleted supply of coffee pods. The air was crisp, the wind was at bay, and this added up to perfect conditions for long-exposure photos of ships in the harbour. Enjoy!

A killer speed boat

A killer speed boat
I don't have sea-legs. While this scene looks like an idyllic way to spend a late afternoon, for me bobbing up and down on the water any kind of vessel is a terrible idea. However, I guess this is why some smart folks out there invented little white tablets that counteract motion-sickness. I don't go out on water without taking one of those tablets, ever. :)

Napping boats at night

Napping boats at night
It's not at every large harbour that one's able to walk around admiring the ships moored at the piers at night. If you're visiting Cape Town, and if the wind happens to be at bay, then grab your camera and take a walk in the V&A Waterfront.

Harbours aren't necessarily the safest areas, but even at night the V&A Waterfront is pretty safe. CCTV cameras are abundant and there are plenty of security guards roaming the walkways.

Backyard broken boats

Backyard broken boat SW56A
This broken old fishing boat isn't exactly what you'd expect to find in a typical Capetonian's backyard. Really, I promise. We prefer to keep cheetahs - they're far more placid and are wonderful as watch... err... watchcats. :)

Tugboat that tugged the trawler

Tugboat that tugged the trawler
The tugboat to the left is the Smit Amandla, the boat that freed that Japanese trawler from Clifton's beachfront last Friday.

Unless you're South African, you may not appreciate the tugboat's name. The first part of the name is a common South African surname (similar to Smith), and the second part (Amandla) is a Xhosa and Zulu word meaning Power. So together, they mean Smit Power. Awesome name for a tugboat hey?! :)

What's especially memorable about the word amandla is that it's part of a war cry (of sorts) adopted by members of the ANC during the apartheid times. Back then, and now sometimes also, the leader of a group of people would shout out "Amandla!" and the crowd would respond with "Awethu!", which together mean "Power to the people!".

Train-spotting

Trains, boats, and harbours
The train crawling out of Kalk Bay station in the background departs from Cape Town station, passes though Cape Town's southern suburbs, and then takes a sharp right turn at the cost to wind it's way along the beaches of False Bay towards Simon's Town. Even though the train's interior isn't in a great condition, and it's not a "first-class" ride, the views and experience certainly are first-class. And yes, it's pretty safe - as long as you keep to daylight hours.

Tourists and locals alike can buy cheap day-traveler hop-on-hop-off tickets at Cape Town station. Besides for sticking to daylight hours, the only advice I'd give is to head out early and to try and pick a sunny, windless day.

Doesn't that sound like fun?

A morning at Kalk Bay harbour

A morning at Kalk Bay harbour
Kalk Bay (pronounced "Cork Bay") started its existence as lime-producing town. In case you're wondering if there's a link between the word "kalk" and lime - there is! The Dutch (and Afrikaans) word "kalk" means "chalk" - which is a form of limestone. So the literal translation of Kalk Bay would be Chalk Bay. :)

The largest sailing catamaran in Africa?

The largest catamaran in Africa?
With a maximum capacity of 60 passengers, NK Charters claims that it's sailing catamaran, Tigresse, is the largest in Africa. On this late afternoon we enviously watched the Tigresse leave the V&A Waterfront with a large group of guests on a sunset campaign-cruise. It would have been nice to have been aboard her, rather than on the old boat that we ended up choosing. :(

If you're not sure what a catamaran is - well, it's quite simple. A catamaran is a boat with more than one hull (generally two hulls). What makes this kind of boat perfect as ferries, or sunset cruises, is that the double-hull design makes this class of boat faster and far more stable than its single-hull sister.

Atlantic Adventure’s high speed ride

Atlantic Adventure's high speed ride
We took a trip on a super-fast jet boat in Sydney - it was amazing! This one, operated by Atlantic Adventures, looks like it's probably just as much fun.

I considered the trip (instead of the deathly-slow Steamboat Vicky trip) but we wanted to take our two nieces out on a ride and this one (while cheaper and longer than the Australian Thunder Jet) was more than we could spend on the trip.

Take a close look at the back of the boat - see the guy with his arms raised? Looks super-happy hey? :D

A trip on the Waterfront’s Steamboat Vicky

A trip on the Waterfront's Steamboat Vicky
While waiting for Steamboat Vicky to dock at the V&A Waterfront I noticed that she appeared to be having trouble motoring against the wind, towards the jetty. She then slowly started drifting out of the yacht basin towards the Clock Tower and Victoria basin. The ground crew disappeared without trace and for about 15 minutes we waited for her to return, silently regretting purchasing tickets.

Steamboat Vicky eventually returned to the jetty empty. It appeared as though she's dropped her passengers off elsewhere to lighten her load for the return trip to her home jetty. According to the skipper they were having trouble with the 100-year-plus steam engine's water pump... and I guess you can imagine that a steamboat without a water pump is more of a boat, less of a steamboat. :)

We started the extremely slow trip around the harbour (according to the skipper the boat has two speeds, slow and stop). The trip lasted about half an hour - and in the next few posts I'll share a few photos that I took of other boats in the Victoria and Alfred basins.

If you decide to take a trip on Steamboat Vicky, I'd advise against sitting in front. During the trip I nervously kept an eye on the uncomfortably-hot flames that were leaping out from under the boiler only 50cm away from my ankle. Also, don't take a trip on a very windy day - the skipper had plenty of engine trouble trying to get old Vicky back to her jetty, and eventually dropped us off at a spot close to the Clock Tower.

Slippery green stuff

Slippery green stuff
Some people would know better than others why slipways like this are called slipways. Even though the concrete surface is made with a corrugated finish, there's nothing quite as slippery as wet green moss.

Besides unfortunate people slipping, and landing on their bums, many a vehicle has seen its end by being dragged into the water, unable to gain enough traction to stop from slipping down the incline.

Unlike others, I'm always extremely over-careful when walking on this kind of surface. ;)