Blue Skies and Broken Ropes

mvhebrides_app
MV Hebrides Approaches Tiree’s Pier

This morning we woke up to bright blue skies and frost. There was just enough wind to gently blow through the washing so there was no fear of the “tornado’ pegs failing and the washing being blown to Mull. The walk down to the ferry terminal to watch the MV Hebrides berth was almost idyllic. Blue skies, blue seas and warm for Tiree at this time of the year.  Definitely a morning to walk right down the pier and watch the ferry tie up.

The ferry turned in the bay in readiness to draw alongside with its stern ramp to the linkspan. The ropes were thrown and caught but the swell was proving troublesome. First one of the stern ropes broke and another was hastily thrown. An additional rope was thrown from one the towers supporting the linkspan. The ramp was lowered and unloading of the vehicles proceeded. The vehicles and foot passengers were unloaded and the foot passengers going to Oban boarded. Then the rope from the linkspan broke and the decision was taken to cast the remaining ropes and for the ferry to depart. It was just too dangerous to proceed. Tomorrow there will be three days worth of vehicles waiting to make the crossing as yesterday’s sailing had to turn round without even approaching Tiree.

As I type CalMac have just issued the following disruption notice:  Oban- Coll- Tiree, Disrupted Service Details, Status: Disrupted Service: Oban – Coll/Tiree/Coll – Oban Monday 3rd March. Due to a heavy swell at Tiree pier, the vessel was unable to load any traffic for Coll and Oban today, although all traffic from Oban and Coll to Tiree was discharged successfully. There is a likelihood of an additional sailing operating from Oban to Tiree and return between Tuesday and Thursday’s scheduled sailings, the details of which will be confirmed as soon as possible. Calmac Ferries apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. Last Updated: 03 Mar 2014 12:40.

As we walk over the grass to the old harbour at Scarinish it feels like a summer’s day. Not only can we see “the Dutchman’s Cap” (one of the Treshnish Islands) we can see snow capped peaks on Mull and the Paps of Jura. What a morning! Blue skies and broken ropes!

mvhebrides_cables
Are these the replacement cables we have been waiting for?

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