Robertson II - on the Rocks

toby snelgrove  IPA

Mayne Island, Canada

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Artist's Description

It was late. Past midnight the morning on July 1, 2007. Canada Day. A day to celebrate the creation of Canada. Later that day hundreds would gather in Winter Bay, Saturn Island for the annual Lamb Barbecue. The Robertson II was arriving late: ebb tide on a dark night. On a southerly heading, probably not realizing that the 4 knot tide was drifting them to starboard, the Robertson II was on a collision course with death.

It hit close to high tide … the worst tide condition for any grounding. If it was a low (rising) tide, patience would have been all that was required. The nautical rule: enter port on a rising tide. If you ground, the tide will free you soon. The tide was not only high, but it was starring to ebb thus the current.

Who knows why they made the choice they did, but the plan, or lack of one, resulted in losing her. No one was injured … just egos, I presume. The skull and crossbones flag she was flying was an ominous sign. As it turned out, they were the “bounty” and the sea it’s captor.

Five attempts to raise her failed. Her clock had run out. The hundreds of young Canadians (and others too) who learned to sail on her (she was a training vessel for many years), grieved her loss as did the thousands who toured her when tied up in Victoria Harbor.

More pictures of the Robertson II can be seen at / enter / galleries / Robertson II Grounding

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Artwork Comments

  • Ranald
  • cherylc1
  • christiane
  • James Robinson Taylor
  • georgiegirl
  • dinghysailor1
  • toby snelgrove  IPA
  • KBSImages
  • Maureen Bloesch
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