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THE VOYAGE OF THE BARQUE CUMBRIA FROM MAURITIUS TO LAUNCESTON.

It may not be generally known that the barque Cumbria, now lying m the roadstead, was- given up for lost 'on her passage from Mauritius to Launceston. from which latter port she came on here. The following particulars of the dreadful weather experienced on the passage are taken from the Launceston Examiner of June 2nd : — This Tessel, whose arrival has for some time passed been anxiously looked forward to, entered the Heads yesterday morning, and reached the wharf m tow of the tug Taraar it five o'clock m the evening. The Cumbria is a splendidly constructed iron barque of 641 tons, owned by Fantling Hicks, Esq., of Scarborough. She was built by the firm of Bartram and Haswell, iron ship-builders, of the South Docks, Sunderland, m 1874, so she is comparatively quite a new Teasel. Her dimensions are— Length, 180 ft; breadth of beam, 32ft ; and depthof hold, 17ft|6im. As would be expected, the Cumbria presented the appearance of a vessel that hod encountered much rough weather, nearly every inch of paint having been washed from the lower portion of her hull, and ■ even the " Plimsoll mark " being almost obliterated through the constant dashing of the sea ogainst her sides. She is m command of Captain Baineg, who on the present occasion makes his first trip to the colonies. He reports having left Port Louis on March 15th, at noon, and experiencing light variable winds to 38 S. 90 E., when light 8.8. and S.W. breezes sprang up, continuing until April 17th. On this date the wind changed round to tho N.E. accompanied with a heavy confused sea. Took m all sail with the exception of the lower topsails and foretopmast and mizzen staysails. At midnight & terrible gale came on, the ship laboring and straining very mncb, so as to cause the cargo to shift m the after and fore holds. During the height of the storm the lower foretopsail was lost, it being blown to atoms. At 2 a.m. the staysails were taken m, and the ship hove to nnder the lower maintopsail and tarpaulin m the mizzen rigging, the sea all the while beating fnriomly over her fore and aft. On April 18th, at 6 a.m., a fearful tea i •truck the rudder, carrying away the steering gear, and breaking the packing box bolts at its head. The wind and sea slightly moderated at 8 a.m., and all hands were soon employed m fitting up and repairing the injured steering gear. At noon the ship kept on her conrse, and set the upper foretapaail to the foreyard as a lower topsaiL There was considerably less lea at 6 p.m., and the weather was much, better. The main topgallantjail was set at 8 p.m., and the vessel made fair headway. On the 19th April, at midnight, all plain sail was unfurled to the best advantage, the wind at the time having considerably gone down. Light. N.E. and easterly breezes with good weather were met nntil the 30th April, when the ship Aviemore, of Aberdeen, was spoken 78 days out from London to Sydney, " all well." Sighted Lady Percy Island, near Portland Bay, Victoria, ak 8 a.m. on May 7th, and passed Cape Otway at 2 a.m. on. the Bth. Passed King Island at 8 a.m. on the same day, at a distance of six miles, light westerly winds _ and cloudy weather prevailing. At 6 p.m. the wind increased, and dark threatening weather set m. Black clouds and a fresh breeze pre>, 'vailed at 8 p.m. accompanied with faint flashes of lightning. ' A etrong westerly wind came on at ten o'clock, the weather becoming unmually dark and gloomy, and the lightning flashing brilliantly to the west. At midnight all hands were called on deck m order to take m lafl, and the barque -was put under lower topsails. The wind had then increased to a fierce gale, with a heavy confused sea. The vessel's head was put to the northward, Tamar Heads at the time bearing S.E. distance 40 miles. The gale still continued, and at noon on the 9th thick hazy weather prevailed. Sighted Curtis Island, Kent Group, at 6 p.m., and the ship was wore to the S.S.W., the land being on the lee bow. A very heavy sea was raging, and the barqne was still left under lower topsails. For some time she labored heavily, and took a large amount of water over the rails. The cargo m the fore hold was again shifted slightly, and the ship, drifted bodily to leeward. On the! 10th May, at 6 a.m., for the safely of the vessel and crew, she was left away for Bank's Straits, and Clarke Island was passed at noon, a very high sea prevailing. The barque at this period shipped water at intervals. Passed Swanliland at 1 a.m. on the 11th, and brought to under Tasmanian land with a hard gale and dark cloudy weather setting m. The wind Teered to N.W. during the next day, and the vessel was left away to the southward m order that she might be able to go round the southern end of tn*e island. At noon on the 13th May the sonth portion of Swan Island bore N.W., distance 40 miles, the ship then j having all the plain sails set. The barometer began to fall rapidly, and all the canvas was taken m with the exception of the lower maintppiail, the ship being brought to with her head towards the N.E. ' A terrific westerly gale raged at midnight, the vessel laboring heavily, and the sea filling the decks fore and aft. This kind of weather continued up to the 18th May, when it moderated a little, but on May 20th tke glass again fell, and dark clouds put m an appearance. The lower foretopsail was reefed, and the ship brought to once more under the lower maintopsail, with - the weather cloth m the mizzen rigging. Experienced hard gales up to. the 26th May, when the weather moderated, and light 3.X. winds accompanied with calms prevailed until May 30th, when Swan Island was again passed. At 6 p.m. passed Waterhonse Island, and at 9 p.m. Ninth Island. Sighted. Tamar Heads light at 11 pjn., bearing S.B.E. On Tuesday, at 4 a.m. the light bore S. JE. The weather came on thick at 6 a.m., and the light was lott. right of. Made out the lighthouse at 9 a.m. bearing E., distance about six miles. Took the pilot on board at noon, entered Tamar Heads early yesterday morning, and reached the wharf as above. The Cumbria berthed astern of the barque Brisbane at the Queen's wharf. [We may mention that despite the rough passage of the Cumbria, her cargo was turned out m excellent condition.— Ed. T.E.] The Oiago Daily Time* of yesterday sayt : — " When the barque Iris arrived at Port Chalmers on Friday afternoon, her master, m hi* report, omitted to inform the representatives of the Press that his vessel, drawing 16 feet of water, bad struck while coming into port through the north channel m tow of tke s.s: Flacky. It appears that by 4 p.m. on Friday the vessel had no less than four feet of water m her hold, and it then became necessary to' engage a gang of men from the ■hore to pump her out daring the night m order to keep her free. On Saturday morning she commenced to discharge cargo, and thanks to the promptitude of Mr Dale, the station-manager, a constant supply of trucks was placed at her disposal. On the day prior to her arrival there was ltfft 6in of water m the channel at low water ; and immediately before she came m there was a smooth bar ; a I

sudden shift of wind bringing up o heavy rolling sea ensued, and as »he came through the channel she was taken by one of these rollers, which, as it subsided, caused , her to strike the bar. We are sorry to hear that Pilot Moore, who was m oharge, has been suspended. That officer, wo opine, can neither control wind nor sea. (Br Tblegbaph.)

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/THD18810719.2.3.2

Bibliographic details

Timaru Herald, Timaru Herald, Volume XXXV, Issue 2128, 19 July 1881

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1,364

THE VOYAGE OF THE BARQUE CUMBRIA FROM MAURITIUS TO LAUNCESTON. Timaru Herald, Volume XXXV, Issue 2128, 19 July 1881

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