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sábado, 7 de abril de 2018

A day in NRP Sagres II - Part 1

Ah, the Portuguese Navy icon, made in Hitler's German (lol) and used by the nazi navy. Some say that is a war veteran, with various supposed russian fighters shoot down by is AA, in the Baltic retreat (were was hit by a mine and almost sunk). But is a pretty ship and i had the objective of see him, but i was always late and so the Sagres II (Sagres I was made of wood, and after some abandon years in Alfeite, was sold to Germany, were is preserved), was close to public or at sea. This time i made it and this is the result: a group of spectacular pictures and a great afternon spending visiting this ancient ship. A special word to the crew, for the simpathy and pacience with thousants of visitors with all ages. So, lets see the photos in this first part.

At the Port. Entrance in a moment with family, after a nice member of the crew give us all a warm "Welcome". Some clouds and one or another piece of light rain but the imotion of a unique visit to this mobile embassy was above any weather problem. The story of Sagres II is well documented in the links beyond, so let´s move on.

The ship "frown" at the proa (it´s Vasco da Gama), in fine conditions, as all the ship may i say. Sailors are busy with sails has the visitors enter in Sagres II, in a perfect line and order, folow the simple indications of one member of the crew. Serving in Sagres II is a honour that only a small fraction of the portuguese navy is able to.

Another view of the ship from a diferent angle. To be a ship were the open space are so many often cause problems in the transaction to Frigates and Corvettes who are most claustrofobic, so some people in the portuguese navy defend that they should have a ship like brazilian navy "NE Brasil" to make this transaction more easy. 

Before the visit at the river "Sado". It's always a extraordinary view to see this magnific ship walk on the port, especially sailing at low speed, and accompanied with other boats, sometimes hundreds of them arround this great main attraction.  Still the same after more than 80 years (81 to be exactly in time), and the public love him each generation.

The ship´s name bewind the chimney. It's common like in other navie's, the use of  names, ship after ship, when in active dutty. and Sagres have a important significant for portuguese Navy since is conected with the expansion and navegation. But  probably the more correct name his Sagres II, since there was a first one.

A plate with the name of the naval constructor, place and date. The origin of Sagres and Sagres II was that cadets nead to learn from old naval examples in ancient ships, so B&V made an upgrade from wood models, with a metal "casco" and a more strong construction not only to Baltic Sea but also for Atlantique waters.

Portuguese and wine have a huge relationship. Most famous is "Porto" but others like "Moscatel" or in this case "vinho da madeira", are also well known abroad. In our ships, it's like water or air, so is always present. Is this case there´s a pipa, but in some frigates like Vasco da Gama Class was a reservoir made specially for wine.

Velame aparail and the portuguese flag at the top. Sagres II continues a long tradition of navigators in Portugal since the XIV century, when the portuguese strated the expansion, first in North Africa and them to India an Brasil, with ships arriving in China, Japan and probably also Australia (ancient guns and maps, are the main reason that made us belive in this possibility). 

Two metal heads (Me and a salvo 75mm The story of this ship armed in the Baltic Sea at World War II was told in the introduction, but the only confirmation was from ancient german sailors that told to the brazilian, when they became the ownors after the war. Sold to Portugal, the are no referencies to this episode, and also the almost sinking of the ship by a mine, was forgoten.

A piece of history from Sagres II, is S. Filipe fortress, made by the Filipe's dynastie when they rule Portugal for almost 50 years. It is one of many, because from Viso Fort, to Outão Hospital there are much of ancient ruines and places by the city. Behind S. Filipe Fort there´s the rest of a gun battory, and down him there's a house were Jacklyn Kennedy was after her usband was shoot down in Dallas.

Piece of art in the picture is the national shild. The ship is always in great conditions with fresh paint and smelling clining at the maximum, folow by a very proud crue in their Sagres II, what is a sucess in every port he visit, nacional or internacional. There are plans to a upgrade and portuguese navy don´t speak about there reteirement. And the age of 100 years is near...

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