Make it a special day this Saturday, get your boat on the water or take advantage of a charter boat to see close up the magnificent RMS Queen Mary 2 at anchor off Airlie Beach.
RMS Queen Mary 2 is a transatlantic ocean liner, the first major ocean liner built since Queen Elizabeth 2 in 1969, the ship she succeeded as flagship of the famous Cunard Line. QM2 entered service in 2004 as the largest, longest, widest, tallest and most expensive passenger liner in history.
With the retirement of RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 from active duty in 2008, Queen Mary 2 is currently the only transatlantic ocean liner operating a scheduled service between Southampton and New York, although the ship is currently on her annual world cruise, winter crossings of the Atlantic not being in favour. RMS is the prefix for ships that carry mail under contract to British Royal Mail.
No ship has ever been designed like QM2, a liner that sets the benchmark for others, extends the boundaries of ship design, and which is the fastest since Cunard's own QE2. QM2 is a technically advanced machine far ahead of any passenger ship in service today, and will be so for some many years to come.
At the time of her construction in 2003, Queen Mary 2 was at 151,400 gross registered tons (GRT), was the largest and remains the largest ocean liner, as opposed to cruise ship, ever built. The current cruise ship biggie is the 225,282 GT Allure of the Seas launched in November 2010.
Her top speed of just over 30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph) and cruising speed of 26 knots (48 km/h; 30 mph), makes her much faster than contemporary cruise ships.
Queen Mary 2 has fifteen restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, a casino, a ballroom, a theatre, and the first planetarium at sea. Agents say there are also kennels on board, as well as a nursery, although not strictly in that order.
As of December 2011 Queen Mary 2, and all ships of the Cunard fleet, changed their registry to Hamilton, Bermuda to host weddings on board thus ending 127 years of Cunard British registry.
Meet and greet
Our Volunteer Ambassadors will do the meet and greet for some of the 3000 passengers who come ashore in Airlie Beach. Other passengers will take trips to the Great Barrier Reef. Want to become an Ambassador? Judi Dunn 0408 285 915
Planning a boating trip?
Check the weather before you go says the Bureau of Meteorology and they have prepared a few tips to keep everyone safe and happy!
The Four vital weather checks to include when planning your boating trip are Warnings, Weather, Wind and Wave Conditions.
Check the Bureau's round-the-clock forecast service for all Australian coastal waters. You can access the BOM marine website using 3G mobile coverage if you are close to the coast. Additionally, there are VHF and HF radio broadcasts besides regular updates on commercial radio. The full story with links -- check On the Waterfront Waterfront.blogspot.com.au
End of Cowboys
Fifty years ago, John Glenn's spaceflight on February 20 spelled the end for cowboys when every boy (and some girls;-) at least thought about becoming an astronaut. Pirate movies took a knock for some years but seem to have made substantial inroads in recent times.
The Mercury spacecraft, named Friendship 7 made three orbits of the Earth, piloted by astronaut John Glenn, who became the first American to orbit the Earth almost a year after Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin .
Sailors know that when using a tool on deck a lanyard or some such contraption really should secure it.
Also known is that if an unsecured tool drops on the deck it will bounce once -- and go over the side.
Waterfront hears there is a shotgun that bounced once and following the one bounce law is now on the bottom of Molle Passage.
Is this waterfront yarn a smoking gun or just a daydream?
Daydream Island - Mariners may notice that the backlight of the leading lights marking the route through Unsafe Passage is partially obscured and/or of lower intensity. Use caution or get the tree dudes to clear some branches possibly obscuring the light.
Fair winds to Ye!
Cap'n Dan is a regular broadcaster on ABC Radio Tropical North and 4MK