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The Strait Feronia

Recently the Wellington ferry company Bluebridge announced that they had purchased a new ferry and it was sailing its way from Sweden to arrive on the 1st June. There was an associated photo competition to capture the best photo of the Strait Feronia’s Wellington arrival so I figured we’d get out and see if we could get some good shots. With a bit of pre-planning and the help of an app on my phone that tracked ships (MarineTraffic) we set out on the Monday morning towards Seatoun to capture the Strait Feronia as it entered Wellington harbour.

We parked near the start of the Benoit Trail above Breaker Bay and then walked up through the Oruaiti Reserve to the gun emplacements that were part of Fort Dorset. With panoramic views over the harbour mouth this was a fantastic viewpoint for watching the Strait Feronia arrive. The ferry was a dot in the distance as we arrived but soon enough she was cutting past Baring Head following a pilot boat. It was a still and overcast morning and we were surprised by a bit of rain which had us heading back to the car. There was time for a quick few photos of the Strait Feronia nearing Matiu/Somes Island and then we were driving towards Mt Victoria to see if we could catch the ferry reach its new home.

Watching the arriving Strait Feronia
Watching the arriving Strait Feronia
Entering the harbour past Baring Head
Entering the harbour past Baring Head

Sailing past Matiu/Somes Island

The Mt Victoria lookout only had a few people in attendance and we got there in plenty of time to watch the Strait Feronia be introduced to Wellington. There was a tug boat in attendance spraying a fountain of water and two helicopters circled around as well. The cloud was starting to break up and then the sun came out to shine on the harbour. I got a few more photos and then we enjoyed some sun at the summit while Alayna played around.

A proud display
A proud display, my competition entry

This morning I got a phone call on the way to work from Priscilla at Bluebridge telling me that I’d won the photo competition with my entry above! Keryn and I now have some planning to do as we’re won a Britz campervan for 5 nights plus accommodation and petrol costs and of course return ferry fares as well. Goes to show that a little preparation can pay off :).

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2 thoughts on “The Strait Feronia

  1. Lovely photos. I prefer the Baring Head one – very nuautical, but the City photo would have more general appeal. Like you said, it incorporates everything – tug, commercial port, recrecational waterfront, St Gerards, etc.
    Totally ship-nerdy question (if you noticed) – it is pointing in the wrong direction to berth. Did it go astern and around a corner to get into the Bluebridge dock, or realign to go stright into the dock? Ships that size tend to perfer to go astern in a stright line.

  2. As it happened it didn’t berth at the Bluebridge dock, it went back out into the main harbour and then docked across from the Stadium. Keryn pointed out to me that the ship probably had checks that needed to be performed by NZ port authorities upon arrival so I guess that’s why it went elsewhere (and there was another Bluebridge ferry coming into harbour on a scheduled sailing so I guess they needed to dock as well)

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