Ships and Boats

It was Wednesday afternoon.
We might have missed it – but we didn’t.
We were all together in our living-room.
The cry went up, “Look! Look out the window!”

The NLV Pharos passes our living room window – in the background are the Paps of Jura

The vessel seemed so close.
As a result it appeared rather large.
It was the Northern Lighthouse vessel ‘Pharos’.

The NLV passes the old port at Baugh

We had an appointment at Heylipol.
As a consequence we saw the vessel at Baugh
Then we saw it anchor in Hynish Bay off Crossapol.

The NLV Paros anchoring in Hynish Bay off Crossapol

The Pharos often anchors in Hynish Bay when she services Skerryvore Lighthouse
Certainly she anchored in the bay on Wednesday evening.
She then returned on Thursday evening.

The NLV Pharos with the helicopter on its pad

The NLV Pharos can often be seen alongside the Lighthouse Pier at Oban.
She is a Multi-Function Tender which came into service in 2007.
She works with a contract helicopter and her own workboats.
She is thus able to access and also re-supply
some of the most remote assets in Scotland
and the Isle of Man.

The dingy ‘Pelican’ with the NLV Pharos in the background

A personal favourite location on the island is the old port at Baugh.
This especially so when the ‘Pelican’ is in these waters.
At times is can be like a picture postcard.

It is Wednesday and the MV Clansman sails out of Gott Bay bound for Barra

In CalMac’s Summer Time timetable Wednesday is a special day.
The ferry goes on from Tiree and across the Little Minch to Barra.
It is thus possible to come to Tiree and return to the Mainland on the same day.
Some people use the Barra crossing to enjoy the sail to Barra as a non-landing cruise.

The MV Clansman enters the Gunna Sound inbound from Barra

The Gunna Sound separates the twin Isles of Coll and Tiree.
For the Barra Crossing the vessel makes use of the Gunna Sound.
On Wednesday the arrival of the ferry at the entrance to the Sound was stunning.

The MV Clansman passing the navigational buoy in the Gunna Sound

On a Wednesday the ferry calls twice at Tiree.
At 11:05am the ferry arrives from Coll and Oban bound for Barra.
About six hours later it arrives from Barra bound for Coll and Oban.

The MV Clansman emits black smoke from her funnel as she prepare to depart for Coll and Oban

Most freight vessels and cruise ships sail to the West of Tiree.
Occasionally such vessels will enter the Passage of Tiree.
Recently the cruise ship ‘Astoria‘ passed our island.
She must have been at least 10 miles away.

The Cruise Ship ‘Astoria’ in the Passage of Tiree

Fishing boats often frequent the waters that surround Tiree.
A number of vessels sail from Milton harbour.
A couple also sail from Scarinish harbour.

Atlantis Roar in the waters off Scarinish Harbour

Ships and Boats!
One Winter, not so long ago,
when the MV Clansman went for its annual overhaul
a much smaller ferry the MV Hebridean Isles took its place.
Just before the return of the Mighty ‘Clansman to the route
the MV Hebrides replaced the MV Hebridean Isles.
The former pier master exclaimed,
“There’s a ship!”

The MV Hebrides in Gott Bay, Tiree

Just what makes a ship a ship?
What is the difference between a ship and a boat?
Well! I’ll leave you to enter this much discussed question.

A jet ski in Gott Bay, a boat or a ski?

This is ‘Life on Tiree’.
I do love to be beside the sea.