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Archive for the ‘PICTON CASTLE’ Category

Tall Ships in the Crescent City

Posted by Tall Ships America on April 21, 2018

Picton’s resident feline, named “Fiji”, plays in a dockline coil


April 20, 2018

by James

Wow! What a week its been since we left Pensacola! We cast off at 6:30 AM Monday morning and had some great sailing for the next day or so. Once we got closer to the Mississippi the weather died a bit, and we motored through the North Gulf oil fields. A pilot got on board and we entered the River delta, connecting with a tug Tuesday afternoon. It would have taken several days to make it upriver without one, due to the Mississippi’s high water and fast current. It was quite the workout, manning the helm that night. It took two people to keep the ship on course behind the tug!

Oosterschelde overtakes Picton Castle on the voyage from Pensacola

The tug got the Picton crew to the anchorage the next morning, where Elissa was already waiting. We were shortly joined by Oosterschelde (Lynx and When and If took the Industrial Canal to Pontchartrain Landing) that afternoon. We spent the rest of that day in the hot sun making Picton look nice and pretty for public viewing. Oliver Hazard Perry arrived later that night.

Picton crew members unwind with music after a hard days work

Thursday was spent coming up the final few mile stretch between the anchorage and New Orleans.

The ships opened for tours for school kids today around 10 AM, with tours for the general public open at 12. It was incredible to see the ultimate turn out, and I’m looking forward to seeing the final numbers recorded by the ships, I’m sure they were in the  thousands!

The ship crews are seething with anticipation to get out an explore the Big Easy, myself included. I cant wait to see the famous New Orleans from street level!

View from aloft on Picton Castle

ew Orleans from street level!

Posted in 2018, New Orleans, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

Tall Ships® Pensacola Day 1

Posted by Tall Ships America on April 14, 2018

Parade Pensacola

By James

It was a long three-day passage from Galveston to Pensacola. For the first two days, the weather was consistently rainy with rough seas. The deck of Picton Castle was soaked with ocean spray at any given time. Unfortunately the meant that nearly half the people on board were battling seasickness. Thankfully, the weather cleared up by Wednesday afternoon, and left us with perfect sailing conditions for yesterday’s Parade of Sail into Pensacola.

The parade itself went handsomely, with Picton Castle leading the procession, followed by Oosterschelde, Elissa, Oliver Hazard Perry, and When and If. Lynx was delayed on the way into Pensacola due to weather but the fleet put on a fantastic show for the parade. By my count, the parade was joined by hundreds of local boats and even a pod of dolphins!

dolphins in the headrig

Everyone aboard, especially our resident New Orleans Maritime & Military Aacademy trainees, couldn’t wait to make landfall. Everyone aboard Picton was tired and covered dirt from hard work under the sun, so showers were a DEFINITE priority for all.

Now, Tall Ships® Pensacola is geared up and in full swing under the bright blue skies. The ships have drawn families from all over the southeast to come get a small taste of history. All the staff members, myself included, have been working hard through their  different, trying to keep things running smooth and as organized as possible. all in all, its a great day for a tall ships’ festival, and I cant wait to see what tomorrow brings!

lines OHP


Posted in 2018, Internship Program, Pensacola, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

Tall Ships in Texas!

Posted by Tall Ships America on April 6, 2018

Friday, April 6th, 2018

It’s beautiful weather here in Galveston, Texas for the first ever TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® Gulf Coast Race Series! Crew members and event staff alike are all super excited to be here. We could not have asked for better weather for yesterday’s Parade of Sail. I watched some superb seamanship from the deck of Galveston’s own historic Tall Ship, Elissa. What a show! I especially enjoyed seeing Lynx, a square topsail schooner, set her split course sail from her lower yard. She might as well have been a brigantine! I got some exceptional photos – see below




Elissa volunteer crew members unfurling the fore topsails


From left to right: Oliver Hazard Perry, When and If, Lynx

Towards the end of the parade, the sun finally hid behind the clouds, but not before leaving me with a quality sunburn. As the sky darkened, the waves grew longer, and the ships began to come into port. We were very lucky the weather never got worse than a few raindrops here and there. After a long day of fair winds and great sailing, Elissa finished with masterful docking maneuvers, and we ended the day at a party for the ship’s crew members.

Today has been non-stop activity, since before the festival even kicked off. It has been a constant scramble to get video’s for social media, or lug boxes of Tall Ships America directories to the ships, among other things, but it wouldn’t be a tall ships festival without a bit of running around. All in all, everyone is looking forward to the inevitable success of Tall Ships® Galveston, and what that means for Sail Training – building awareness and helping to build community. That’s all from me for today, but you can follow the event news on your own at http://www.galvestonhistory.org/events/tall-ships-galveston-2.

-James Rogers


Posted in 2018, Galveston, LYNX, PICTON CASTLE, TX | Leave a Comment »

We rendez-vous’d and you can too

Posted by Tall Ships America on June 29, 2017

Gulden Leeuw (Netherlands) celebrates their 3rd place in the Class A race from Bermuda at the Crew Parade in Boston

It’s funny. It doesn’t matter how many ports we have lined up for the summer, it always feels like it went by way too fast. This summer was no exception. Just last month, we welcomed a fleet of ships to Charleston and it was only last week that we waved goodbye from Boston. In between, I had the opportunity to spend a week in Bermuda and next month, Darlene and I are road-tripping our way to Quebec City for the final send off before the ships sail back to Europe as part of the Rendez-vous  2017 Tall Ships® Regatta.

But first, we begin in Charleston where Tall Ships® Charleston welcomed an international fleet of vessels. Ships represented Argentina, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, and the states of South Carolina, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, and Florida. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2017, Boston, MA, PICTON CASTLE, Sail Training International, USCG | Leave a Comment »

Picton Castle Bosun School

Posted by Tall Ships America on September 7, 2016

2016 Bosun School Poster 2



This fall, at the Bosun School session scheduled, we will be using Picton Castle to teach and practise a large range of critical rigging techniques, sailmaking and wooden boat building. Also we will be taking advantage of our large wooden boat collection of dories, longboats, skiffs, sloops, cutters and small schooners to teach and get lots of practice in small boat handling here in Lunenburg Harbour. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2016, Member Programs, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

New Scholarship Available to Sail on Picton Castle

Posted by Tall Ships America on August 14, 2015



Dark blue-green waves exploded into white on [the] cliffs. I looked up at our rigging and the two square sails set on each mast. They’d turned a deep red, the colour of the sun setting behind us.” – Rigel Crockett, on Picton Castle‘s departure from Lunenburg in November 1997

PICTON CASTLE has just announced that they are offering ‘Professional Marine Training Scholarships‘ for their upcoming Transatlantic Voyage. The six-month long voyage begins October 1st and will include ports such as the Azores (Portugal), Essaouira (Morocco), Carriacou (Grenada), and Picton Castle‘s North American Homeport of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia (Canada). Full and partial scholarships are available and the requirements are as follows:

– Between ages 18-35
– Any nationality
– Must have demonstrated interest in pursuing or continuing a career in the marine industry
– Prior experience at sea is an asset but is not an absolute requirement
– Financial need – this scholarship is designed for those who could not otherwise afford the voyage
– Must also be accepted through Picton Castle’s trainee application process

These scholarships were made possible through the Nova Scotia Seamanship Education Society, a registered charity that supports marine training opportunities.

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To share your member vessel news, please contact Tall Ships America.

Posted in 2015, Member Programs, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

An evening in Brazil

Posted by Tall Ships America on June 12, 2015

Welcome to Norfolk!

Welcome to Norfolk!

On Wednesday, Eliza and I were in Norfolk, VA for a reception on board Cisne Branco  for Brazilian Navy Commemorative Day. This was the first time I had seen Cisne Branco since 2007, when she participated in the TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE(r) Atlantic Coast race series that year. She was then, and remains now, a beautiful ship. Upon arrival in Norfolk, we went down to the waterfront to scope out the venue for that evening and saw some cadets hard at work, touching up the paint on the hull and the anchor- Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2015, Cape Charles VA, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

Blue Water Blogs: Picton Castle

Posted by Tall Ships America on January 2, 2015

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PICTON CASTLE and her crew arrived in Cape Town, South Africa today after a 2, 247 nautical mile journey across the Indian Ocean and South Atlantic. Follow their adventures as they learn about the evolution of ship design, celebrate Christmas at sea, and round the Cape of Good Hope just in time for New Year’s 2015! 

Kelley watching the sunset (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Kelley watching the sunset (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

December 14, 2014 – 21°34.3’’S x 054°11.7’’E
“After a lovely week in ‘France’, we’re now underway from La Reunion, bound two thousand miles around the Cape of Good Hope for Cape Town.  Hot weather today so we rigged the power shower after lunch. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Blue Water Blogs, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

Blue Water Blogs: Picton Castle

Posted by Tall Ships America on December 4, 2014

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Join PICTON CASTLE as her crew sails west across the Indian Ocean towards the Cape of Good Hope

Stunsails set. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 13, 2014 – 18°44.1’’S x 077°08.6’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“Today’s afternoon workshop was on studdingsails or stunsl’s – the large sails set to windward of the foreyards on special booms in light airs; the history, the ships that carried them and how we rig up for and set stunsles in the PICTON CASTLE. If the wind stays consistently light, we might be able to rig them in the next day or two. Plenty breeze now though. To explain why that makes us so happy, here’s an archive shot of PICTON CASTLE taken in the Indian Ocean a few years ago with all stuns’ls set.  Pretty, no?”

November 14, 2014 – 18°49.6’S x 074°49.6’E (Bali, Indonesia to Rodrigues Island, Mauritius)
“The Captain gave an update on our passage so far this afternoon. He spoke about our anticipated ports of call at Rodriguez Island, part of Mauritus and described by Joseph Conrad as the ‘sugary pearl of the Indian Ocean’. Also La Renuion Island, another 500nm on from Rodriguez and a French Territory and thus in our imaginations source of endless croissants, baguettes, red wine and good cheese. Apparently the crème brulee there is unbeatable. Both islands sound very lovely but it’s also a little sad that we’re thinking about the end of this passage already, it seems to be going very quickly.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Blue Water Blogs, Guest Blogger, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

Blue Water Blogs: Picton Castle

Posted by Tall Ships America on November 6, 2014

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Picton Castle is sailing west across the Indian Ocean…follow her voyage on Blue Water Blogs!

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October 31, 2014 – 12°00.7’S x 106°50.9’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)

“Today’s workshop is practical sailmaking – after a lecture on sail design and construction theory we’re starting to make canvas ditty bags which engage all the skills needed to make a sail, with instruction from Captain and help from our sail makers Tammy, John and Amy, and also Elsa who has joined us from GOTHENBURG and has great hand work skills. Secret midnight baking is planned for tomorrow’s Halloween festivities….”

Laura (Denmark) has the helm. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Laura (Denmark) has the helm. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 1, 2014 – 12°31.3’S x 104°40.6’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)

“Just a half day’s work today as it’s Saturday and we’re celebrating Halloween this afternoon.  The watches have been busy making scary cupcakes, carving pumpkins and working on some pretty hilarious costumes.”

Morten (Denmark) carves a jack-o-lantern for Halloween. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Morten (Denmark) carves a jack-o-lantern for Halloween. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 2, 2014 – 13°12.5’S x 102°20.3’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“The watches have been doing ‘make and mend’ on watch as it’s a Sunday – lots of people are working on seaming up their sail cloth ditty bags ready for the second installment of the Captain’s workshop tomorrow. Others have been doing their laundry in buckets of salt water on the well deck – to conserve fresh water we use salt for all but the final rinse, the supply is unlimited and it works very well.  Others are reading or playing cards in the salon, cleaning and organising their sea chests and bunks, or just hanging out in small groups on the ‘aloha deck’ aft and fo’c’sle head forward.”

Ship's Boy Dawson (Canada) helps Captain and Tammy present the ditty bag workshop. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Ship’s Boy Dawson (Canada) helps Captain and Tammy present the ditty bag workshop. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 3, 2014 – 13°58.6’S x 099°425.6’’E(sic) (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“We put the ship’s clocks back one hour overnight, so we’re now in the same time-zone as Bangkok, Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City.  A week into this ocean passage, and the weather is perfect, so we’ve split some daymen off from the watches to give people a chance to learn some different skills and see different parts of the ship’s operation.  This week Aaron and Peter are working on rigging projects, Scott is in the engine room with Billy, and Elsa is making sails with Tammy and John. AB Erin is our new Bosun and keeping all the projects on deck and in the rig moving along.  Meanwhile Mark B is acting lead seaman for the 4-8 watch.  Part II of the Captain’s ditty bag workshops is scheduled for this afternoon. Making and sewing in grommets are the order of the day.”

Kelley (Canada) clews up the fore royal. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Kelley (Canada) clews up the fore royal. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 4, 2014 – 14°36.1’S x 097°42.6’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“Today’s workshop is sail handling drill – making sure the gang are quick and capable at taking in the lighter sails in case of winds building or squalls. Taking in the royals needs to be slick! It’s Erin’s birthday today and Alex has made a cake to celebrate, plus it’s everyone’s favourite, Donald Fried Chicken for supper!”

Aaron (USA) and Peter (USA) overhauling blocks. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

Aaron (USA) and Peter (USA) overhauling blocks. (Photo Courtesy of Picton Castle)

November 5, 2014 – 15°13.6’S x 095°07.9’’E (Bali, Indonesia to Reunion Island, France, Indian Ocean)
“We continue with our sailcloth ditty bags in today’s workshop: we’ll be making the rope grommet that stiffens the top of the bag and stitching it onto the bag – it’s the same skill as ‘roping’, the traditional method of strengthening the edge of a sail.”

Posted in Blue Water Blogs, PICTON CASTLE | Leave a Comment »

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