Tristan da Cunha Shipping News
Reports of vessels visiting Tristan da Cunha, and voyages to and from the island.

Visit of yacht Endeavour

Report and photos by  Dawn Repetto

The two masted yacht Endeavour arrived at Tristan from Uruguay on the afternoon of Monday 18th February 2019. The weather was not good, so she went to the lee and returned the following afternoon. Sadly, with the passing of a community member, all work on the island stopped as a mark of respect, so landing was not possible on Wednesday. Early Thursday morning, the launch visited the yacht and brought the only crew member ashore. After immigration was completed we assisted the yachtsman, Andreas, in getting supplies, water, fuses, batteries and washing. There was even time to have a toastie and tea at Café da Cunha. Around 1:00pm, Andreas returned to the yacht with all his supplies and set sail for Cape Town later in the day.

Yacht Endeavour anchored off Calshot Harbour. The launch bringing Andreas ashore.
Yacht Endeavour anchored off Calshot Harbour. The launch bringing Andreas ashore.

Andreas: If you are reading this, we'd appreciate receiving your feedback using our Visitors' Feedback Form.

Geo Searcher January - February Voyage

Report from Cynthia Green and Sean Burns

Following offloading, MFV Geo Searcher headed to Gough Island to deliver some urgent refrigeration spares for the Gough Team. The ship returned to Tristan waters on Monday 11th. Backloading of Tristan Lobster was completed, and, on Tuesday 12th February, passengers boarded at 16.00 and the ship sailed for Cape Town at 17.00.

Passengers are: Islanders Conrad and Sharon Glass, Jill Repetto, Vera Glass, Christopher and Beverley Swain, Joseph and Anne Green, Simon and Natasha Glass, Rhoda Rogers and Dr Emma Browne.

Sean Burns' photo shows the raft with incoming passeners and their luggage
approcahing Calshot Harbour on 18th November 2018, with the MFV Geo Searcher anchored off-shore.

Report from Cynthia Green

Arrival at Tristan

MFV Geo Searcher arrived at Tristan at about 21.00 on Thursday 7th February 2019. Passengers came ashore the following morning. This Geo Searcher trip is a round-trip for cargo and passengers as the vessel completed catching the full outer islands (Gough, Inaccessible and Nightingale) Tristan Lobster quotas last month.

After offloading the vessel will backload with Tristan Lobster from the Tristan Fishing factory, load passengers and return to Cape Town. This will be confirmed as the ship departs.

Good weather has meant Friday 8th February is a busy day on Tristan with crews working flat-out to offload the Geo Searcher and complete offloading of her sister ship MFV Edinburgh.

Departure from Cape Town

MFV Geo Searcher departed from Cape Town at 16.30 on Thursday 31st January 2019 as scheduled.

Aboard are the following passengers:  Islanders Carlene and Grant Green, Ian and Nigel Lavarello, Beverley and Andre Repetto, Finance Officer David Moores, Harbour Engineer Gerhard Kapp and Nurse Gift Chizema.

The ship is expected to arrive at Tristan on 7th February.

Delayed MFV Edinburgh voyage arrives at Tristan

Report from Sean Burns on 9th February 2019

MFV Edinburgh was able to start offloading cargo on Monday 4th February 2019 as sea conditions allowed use of Calshot Harbour to receive the raft and barges. This started with offloading of medical supplies, fresh fruit and vegetables. Unfortunately, the entire fresh consignment had to be condemned, partly owing to the fact that it had been on board since mid-January. Luckily MFV Geo Searcher arrived later in the week and was able to offload its own more modest cargo of fresh fruit and vegetables which are now being enjoyed by island families.

Edinburgh offloading continued until late evening on Friday 8th as the vessel carried essential spares for for the crane which took time to be brought ashore. This is part of a 350,000 Euro upgrade to this vital piece of infrastructure. Without it we cannot launch the rafts for offloading or place the concrete blocks (dolos) to maintain the integrity of the harbour.

The ship sailed for seamount fishing at 20.00 on 8 February and is scheduled to return to Tristan in about three weeks for the return trip to Cape Town.

MFV Edinburgh anchored off Tristan on 30th November 2018

Report from Cynthia Green

Technical fault means ship returns to Cape Town

MFV Edinburgh developed a technical fault on Sunday 20th January four days out of Cape Town and over half way of the 1750 miles to Tristan da Cunha (you will often hear it is 1500 miles - but this refers to nautical and not statute miles - for extra clarity the island is 2810 km from South Africa). Therefore the vessel turned around and arrived back in Cape Town harbour early on Thursday 24th January.

Second Cape Town departure and successful passage

Repairs were carried out promptly which enabled the vessel to depart again on Friday 25th January at 13.00. The ship made good progress and arrived at Tristan at 16.45 GMT on Thursday 31st January 15 days after the ship first left Cape Town on 16th January.

The ten passengers originally on the voyage were reduced to eight and came ashore soon after arrival. They were

Craig Bergh (Ovenstones). Dr Jack Dascalu, Conservation workers Carmen Ferreira, Jan Bradley and Kyle Gordon, Crane Technician Stefan van Wyk, Vet Aniket Sardana, and visitor Gianfranco Repetto.

The delayed arrival of the ship on Tristan is particularly disappointing for the island community as it is the first scheduled sailing to Tristan da Cunha in 2019, carrying the first incoming post and 'fresh' foodstuffs since the last arrival of MFV Geo Searcher on 18th November. Off loading was not possible on Friday 1st February, so the crucial cargo remains aboard the ship.

There are 10 scheduled Cape Town - Tristan - Cape Town trips every year, but they are not spread out evenly, with three arrivals in about three weeks late August - early September and always a two-month gap over Christmas and New Year.

MFV Geo Searcher departed Cape Town on Thursday 31st January, the day MFV Edinburgh arrived at Tristan. So there will probbaly be two arrivals within a week. A bit like the old story about London buses: have to wait a long time for one to arrive, then two turn up!

Departure from Cape Town

MFV Edinburgh departed Cape Town as scheduled mid-afternoon on 16th January 2019. On board are the following passengers:

Craig Bergh (Ovenstones). Dr Jack Dascalu, Conservation workers Carmen Ferreira, Jan Bradley and Kyle Gordon, Crane Technician Stefan van Wyk, Vet Aniket Sardana, Bishop Geoff Davies and Kate Davies, Visitor Gianfranco Repetto.

Unusually, no Tristan Islanders are travelling on this trip, but it is good to see a member of the world-wide Repetto family making a trip to the island to meet distant relations.

Visit of the Yacht Ronin

The yacht Ronin called at Tristan on the 28th January 2019 on its way from St Helena to Cape Town.
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Argos Vigo completes seamount fishing operation

After fishing on Tristan's seamounts, the Argos Vigo is heading for the Falkland Islands.
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Tristan da Cunha Shipping Schedules

Schedules and fares for the few ships that regularly travel between Cape Town and Tristan da Cunha.
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Geo Searcher's 2018-2019 Fishing Voyage

Return to Cape Town, departing Tristan 11th January 2019.
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Marine Science around Inaccessible Island

Tristan Fisheries Department work on 7th January 2019
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Suprise Visit of Yacht Faustin's Dream

A yacht was found moored in Calshot Harbour on the 4th January 2019.
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