A Good Sale

“Has it been a good sale?”
“Aye! It’s been a good sale … for the islanders!”
And it’s been a good sail for the Clansman – twice on one day to Tiree.

Been to the sale - now for the sail
Been to the sale – now for the sail

Saturday 18th February 2017.
The date of one of Tiree’s Cattle Sales.
The ferry has to sail from Oban at 5:30am.
This gives an estimated arrival time at the island of 9:15am.
For those coming to Tiree it means being at the port for 4:45am.

The evening sky
The evening sky from Pier Road

The second crossing departed Oban at 15:15.
This was later than estimated in the revised timetable.
The ferry was originally scheduled to arrive at Tiree at 17:35.
The actual time of arrival was considerably down on this at 18:30.
This was a direct sailing time of 3 Hours 15 minutes!

In galleries mouse-over for captions – double-click for larger pictures

All lined up in the marshalling lanes.

At 5:00pm the lights were on at the pier.
By 6:30pm when the ferry arrived it was dark.
It is not often that the ferry arrives in the hours of darkness.

The pier ready for the arrival of the second sailing of the day
The pier ready for the arrival of the second sailing of the day

Tiree has no street lights.
This perhaps makes the pier lights all the more impressive.
A ready stage for the arrival of the star of the evening – the MV Clansman.

Those wanting an early arrival in Oban had travelled on the first sailing.
This evening most of the vehicles and foot passengers had attended the cattle sale.

Been to the sail - time to go home
Been to the sale- time to sail home

Among those going off were some islanders travelling to Stirling for the bull sale.
Their trailers were transporting very highly prized and pampered beasts.

The Truck registration is a give away.
For a trucker it must be very moo-ving.
I wonder whose idea it was to purchase the plate?

A most appropriate plate

With the ferry berthed the vehicles began to roll off the stern ramp.
This morning some of the local trucks must have given way to the cattle-trucks.
IA MacKinnon, a busy local haulier certainly made use of today’s second sailing.

Isle of Tiree Truck
Isle of Tiree Truck

In no time the car deck was cleared.
As soon as the pier approach was clear the vessel was ready for boarding.
With foot passengers already on board its was time for the trucks, tractors and trailers.

The car deck ready for boarding
The car deck ready for boarding

The crew of the Clansman are expert at loading the vessel.
For safety reasons trucks have to be lashed to the deck.
And here they come with their lights.

With the foot passengers on board the gangway is lowered.
The the starboard point of exit is secured.
The vehicles are on the card deck.
The ramp raised and secured.

The vessel is secured in preparation for departure.

The Clansman puts out to sea
The Clansman puts out to sea

There is little doubt that she has thrust away from the pier.
She leaves behind a colourful display.

The Clansman's colourful trail
The Clansman’s colourful trail

It will be a later than anticipated arrival in Oban.
She will berth at Oban Ferry Terminal around 10:15pm.
Those travelling to Stirling and beyond have a long night ahead of them.

Oban bound - a safe and comfortable onward journey
Oban bound – a safe and comfortable onward journey

A final view of the nerve centre.
Tiree’s very own ferry terminal and office.

The CalMac Office - Tiree
The CalMac Office – Tiree

This is ‘Life of Tiree’ reporting on the day of two sailings.
The day and occasion of the Tiree Cattle sale.

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