CARIBBEAN/GULF Crossing
 of LPA-51 and LPA-52

On their LAST VOYAGE - 2013
    

At 1500hrs., on the 23rd of September, two retired vessels began their voyage
across the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico being towed by the Ocean Towing tug ELSBETH II.




VESSEL:  Tug ELSBETH II &
HMAS Manoora (52) & HMAS Kanimbla (51)

Capt Stan reports – Weather report is good. All is well with tug, tow and crew.

Cat Latham reports – Canal transit had some challenges and delays due to traffic. We were ok on arrival, passed inspections. Because the vessels of tow were moored 2200 feet apart, it was a long stretch to connect both of the ships. We hung second ship by stern and used each ships 550 ft length, to give us enough slack. It was the only way, as mooring lines and tow chain wrapped around one buoy. C Willis climbed up and down the chain to unsnarl the mooring lines. It was a hard job, but got it done. Underway at 1045 outbound for sea.

DATE:             September 24, 2013  0600 
POSITION:     10 ° 59 '  8 N  X  080 ° 13 ' W 
SPEED:          5.5 kts   
WIND:  N  10 kts     SEAS:   E  3 – 4 ft
MTG:               1284 nm  Gulfport MS


.................................... 


Capt Latham reports – All is running well, last night cruising offshore Bluefields Nicaragua and slowed to 4.7 kts. Had 12 – 15 kts NE breeze and some old swells. Ships following along sweetly.
DATE:             Sept. 25, 2013  0600    LABORED   110 nm
POSITION:     12 ° 49 '  N  X  080 ° 31 ' W
SPEED:          4.6 kts
WIND:   NNE  10 - 15 kts     SEAS:  NNE  3 – 5 ft
MTG:               1174 nm  Gulfport MS


Capt Latham reports – Found nice current, winds died off, now soft breeze on the beam. All is well with tug, tow and crew.
DATE:           Sept. 26, 2013  0600    LABORED   131 nm
POSITION:     15 ° 00’ 6 N  X  080 ° 37 ' W
SPEED:          6.0 kts

WIND:  E’ly  5 - 10 kts
SEAS: 2 - 4  ft
MTG:              1043 nm  Gulfport MS

Capt Stan reports – Picked up speed  to 7.2 kts last night, if we can maintain close to this to Straights of Yucatan, then we should make 0600 on Oct 3rd.

DATE:           Sept. 27, 2013  0600    LABORED   160 nm
POSITION:     17 ° 22’ N  X  081 ° 40 ' W
SPEED:          6.6 kts

WIND: 
NNE 5 - 10 kts SEAS: 2 - 4  ft
MTG:              883 nm  Gulfport MS
Capt Latham reports – We are West of Grand Cayman now, in lesser currents, best Yucatan currents are tonight and tomorrow. Our weather forecasts are best possible, the ships tow well, it seems at 4 kts they just float along, and at 5 they are happy, at 6 or 7 they take some pulling. All is good, seas flat now and back up to 5.8 kts should be 6.3 kts by noon. DATE:           Sept. 28, 2013  0600    LABORED   148 nm
POSITION:     19 ° 12’ 6 N  X  083 ° 24 ' W
SPEED:          5.9 kts

WIND:  NNE 5 - 7 kts
SEAS: 2 - 3  ft
MTG:              735 nm  Gulfport MS

Capt Stan reports – All is well, ships towing nicely.


DATE:           Sept. 29, 2013  0600    LABORED   144 nm
POSITION:     20 ° 54’ N  X  085 ° 14 ' W
SPEED:          5.7 kts

WIND:  NNW 5 - 10 kts
SEAS: 3 - 4  ft
MTG:              591 nm  Gulfport MS

Capt Stan reports – All is well, ships towing nicely
DATE:           Sept. 30, 2013  0600    LABORED   146 nm
POSITION:     23 ° 01’ N  X  086 ° 21.5 ' W
SPEED:          4.5 kts

WIND:  Clear & Calm
SEAS: 1 - 2  ft
MTG:              445 nm  Gulfport MS


Capt Stan reports – Picked up and made 6.0 kts last night. All is well, ships towing nicely with good weather forecast.

DATE:           Oct. 01, 2013  0600    LABORED   117 nm
POSITION:     25 ° 02.5’ N  X  086 ° 55.4 ' W
SPEED:          5.6 kts

WIND:  E 5 - 8 kts
SEAS: 2 - 3  ft
MTG:              328 nm  Gulfport MS

Capt Stan reports – Watching weather developing but looks like we will squeak in ahead. Discussion on options in planning. All is well aboard and with tow.


DATE:           Oct. 02, 2013  0600    LABORED   139 nm
POSITION:     27 ° 17’ N  X  087 ° 28 ' W
SPEED:          6.2 kts

WIND:  E 10 - 12 kts
SEAS: 3 - 5  ft
MTG:              189 nm  Gulfport MS

This web guy has no idea what will be
 necessary to handle the expected winds and water surge.

ETA:                October 03

They DID MAKE PORT - here at 1600 hrs.
..............................................................................................
    

GO TO: GULFPORT PAGE

The voyage terminus is Gulfport, Mississippi; where the two retired vessels will be inspected by customs.
The vessels will be towed, one by one, down the Inter-Coastal Waterway to "SOUTHERN RECYCLE" in New Orleans.


           

Go To:  THE LAST VOYAGE PAGE