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Cap Finistere today


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9 hours ago, Cassie said:

We’ve had several really grim crossings but the very worst, in August, was on the Pont Aven when, having spent the first part of the night terrified that the upper bunk would come crashing down on me and kill me I spent the second half wishing it would be quick and put me out of my misery. 

Like they say, 'sea sickness won't kill you, but you'll wish it will.'

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A few pics of CF this evening in Le Havre (iPhone quality).

As someone who works in weather forecasting and with (not for) the Met office I'd say their models are good. Windy etc don't have the model detail that the met office do for UK waters as they only use

I was not doubting that, I just don't understand why ! NEX obviously helps the route as it has a decent percentage of the Cherbourg passengers, not withstanding it being seasonal Looking at

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10 hours ago, scarlton said:

Like they say, 'sea sickness won't kill you, but you'll wish it will.'

It was a major factor in the deaths during the 79 Fastnet. The boats that people abandoned didn't sink. Step up, not down into a liferaft! We avoided that hard choice by losing the raft the first time we did a 360 degree roll....

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On 29/11/2019 at 08:51, colin said:

It was a major factor in the deaths during the 79 Fastnet. The boats that people abandoned didn't sink. Step up, not down into a liferaft! We avoided that hard choice by losing the raft the first time we did a 360 degree roll....

After reading this post, and remembering being on Bournemouth sea front that day and having to go indoors to light my pipe (I gave up smoking eight years later) such was the wind, I looked up the report on the race which makes very interesting reading even for a non sailor like me. It can be found here. As Colin points out the causes of death analysis gives a lot of food for thought. A colleague was dismasted on the same day not as far offshore.

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On ‎29‎/‎11‎/‎2019 at 08:51, colin said:

It was a major factor in the deaths during the 79 Fastnet. The boats that people abandoned didn't sink. Step up, not down into a liferaft! We avoided that hard choice by losing the raft the first time we did a 360 degree roll....

I was on scene during the aftermath off the Irish South Coast , we had located several upturned yachts which were sunk by ramming after our divers had checked them out . Even though it was the following day the seas were pretty nasty .

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I agree with Jonno, almost certainly they will reduce capacity and with it the number of crew required, as they presently do with Barfleur. It will be interesting, if they do, so see how far they cut capacity/crew. 

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The Le Havre route used to support three daily sailings in each direction by the Olau twins.  So in theory there’s plenty of custom.  Question is, are the current low numbers a product of Etretat’s limitations, with Normandie giving the route the potential to re-expand, or are they the new norm?  Only time will tell.  I suspect that Normandie’s deployment is a short term test of potential - can’t see her having long enough of a career left in her to warrant major internal reconfiguration, but she’ll give BF an idea of the route’s potential with a proper ferry on it.

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Does make you wonder if their thinking is one of `Keeping the opposition out`?..If they used the Normandie as lower cost bait to freight operators they would be in danger of diluting their established route to Caen and a bit out of the way for a lot of holiday traffic. The Etretat is not an offering Gourvennec was aiming for but is sufficent for that purpose. Normandie can be switched to cover Caen routes, using her at a lower speed, with less work she`ll last longer and allows a Visintini to be returned to the dealer. Who knows whats in their minds but just my thoughts

 

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1 hour ago, jonno said:

I'm wondering whether BF will configure Normandie to carry only her berth capacity of 775, I doubt the route needs a full 2000 pax capable ship.

It may become more popular, and busier in the summer...

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3 minutes ago, The Ferry Man said:

I was in Etretat in September - I wouldn't get your hopes up too much unfortunately.

I saw her berth alongside the Bretagne in June and a friend of mine was on her..It was a similar load to yours in September.

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Well the estimate according to the entertainment chaps (who I feel sorry for poor musician playing to about three people) is about 50 passengers onboard. Can't see many ferry companies fighting for that amount!

 

Edit: the bar staff are just wandering around wondering what to do. It feels sad!

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We were on the Sunday to Tuesday crossing this week. To our surprise the Cap did not put in at Roscoff for a crew change. We were not sure quite why - something to do with Le Havre which we must have misunderstood. On Monday afternoon the full crew did an emergency exercise so guess they had not been on very much longer than Monday morning anyway. 

Pleasant calm crossing though a bit lumpy on Tuesday late afternoon but we enjoyed the extended crossing very much and found it more relaxing than the normal 24 hours.  Getting up at 5.30 am for breakfast and off the boat at 8.15 am was not as bad as I feared either.

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It is my wife favourite crossing but not for me,the early arrival and having a dog makes it nigh inpossible to have breakfast at the normal pace.yet again we are booked on the cap early January for the two nighter.

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I doubt Etretat's limitations has anything to do with the pax numbers at Le Havre, she carried more when sailing for LD/DFDS.

If we consider that her service level is very similar to Barfy, ship appeal isn't really a factor... Barfy carries 50% more passengers annually, a lack of onboard amenities doesn't seem to limit her?

I'm of the opinion that BF wish to keep Le Havre as it is albeit with a higher level of customer service.

For BF Le Havre is strategic for freight, It's by far their 2nd busiest port behind Ouistreham so would appear to suit vessels configured that way... Etretat, BDS and to a lesser "industrial" extent Cap Finistere & Normandie.

In the future seeing both of these latter vessels on this route wouldn't surprise me. As said, Normandie with a limited capacity offers BF's full service together with excellent freight numbers with the ability to increase pax numbers during the summer months utilising her Pullman seats with the possible added attraction of a club class lounge and Cap Finistere would offer BF the same route network coverage as BDS again with healthy freight capacity and full passenger services.

 

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5 minutes ago, Cassie said:

To our surprise the Cap did not put in at Roscoff for a crew change.

Yes, in that case they must have done it earlier in the week in Le Havre although one of her crossings was cancelled due to the weather. It also proves that even though they sell trips from France down to Spain on CF due to that Roscoff call, there are few if any people actually buying tickets. Ed.

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Just now, Cabin-boy said:

even though they sell trips from France down to Spain on CF due to that Roscoff call, there are few if any people actually buying tickets. Ed.

Certainly at this time of year.  Hardly surprising.

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