Antartico - Voyages to Africa
It was very usual to trade to ports located up the rivers. On the arrival to the mouth it was common to find small boats with "Pilots" trying to get the job. This was trying to get the attention of the vessel with the Spanish flag, others were showing a poster with the Company's address.
The sailings up the rivers were spectacular, as this up the Benin to Koko or Sapele,
through the jungle to few meters from the trees,
close to many boats
and small villages.
Until anchoring in the middle of the river surrounded by the jungle.
This was in Koko
and this in the Escravos River on late 1974.
it was common going out with the ship's boat, as this where it was made fast to the river bank, with the Chief Engineer, José Manuel Prado, and maybe the Electrician, Rafael Bahils.
In one of them we see some crewmembers showhing their skills,
or visiting some villages,
and enjoying around.
On one voyage there were a cargo of drums on deck for Warri, what were very appreciated in that area,
to avoid robberies the Master hired some hausa warriors, armed with spears and bows. It was a complete success.
On this photo onboard is Aurelio Montejano (Third Engineer), and on the pier Pepe Pujals (Master), his wife María Rosa, José Manuel Prado (Chief Engineer), and other person.
and on this on the poop deck Francesc Lleal (Chief Mate) and his wife Neus, and an A/B close to the gangway.
One of the usual ports was Lobito (Angola), where this photo was shot on December 1975. Besides several crewmembers there were several Portuguese foremen and many Angola's workers.
On the left was Aurelio Queraltó (Capitán), and ahead him to the right his wife Carmen, two to her right Nicolás Ramsden (Chief Engineer), to his right Luis Palenzuela (Chief Mate), and behind between them Javier Rodríguez Fuejo (Deck Cadet), half bent ahead of the Chief Engineer is José del Río (Donkeyman), and to his right Raúl López (Oiler). On the background, leaned on the hold, was J.J. Alcaraz (Third officer).
As the port stays were very long it was common to play football matches versus other vessels. This was on October 1974 in Lobito.
This was also in Lobito, on 1975. They are, from left to right:
Standing: 1º- José del Río (Donkeyman) -- 2º- Joan Cabot Trujillo (Deck Officer) -- 3º- Maybe Manuel Comojo (A/B) -- 4º- José Juan Alcaraz (Deck Officer) -- 9º- Maybe Ricardo López (A/B) - 10º- Aurelio Queraltó Bou (Master).
Below: 1º- Raúl López (Oiler) -- 5º- Maybe Ricardo Xoubanova (Engineer) -- 6º- José Luis García Rivera (Radio Officer).
On February 1976 was versus an Italian vessel, whose players are also on the photo. They are, from left to right:
Standing: 1º- Joan Cabot Trujillo (Deck Officer) -- 3º- Maybe Ricardo López (A/B) -- 5º- José Juan Alcaraz (Deck Officer).
Below: 1º- Maybe Ricardo Xoubanova (Engineer) -- 4º- Raúl López (Oiler).
This photo was on 1975 sailing the Congo River, during one of her voyages to West Africa.
On this voyage she had an accident when trying to get to Matadi (Zaire). In the """hell's curve", just before Matadi, where the river is narrower and the current stronger. The current was so strong that she could not pass the curve. The Pilot advised that was better anchoring until next day, when it was expected weaker current.
When anchoring both windlasses were removed from their foundations. Luckily the vessel managed to pass the curve and berth at Matadi.
On this graphic, made by J.J. Alcaraz, can be found the expected current speed depending on the month for Boma (in the lower part of the river), and Matadi (just before the rapids which avoid the ships sailing further up the river). As can be observed there were some months when was impossible for this vessel reaching Matadi, because the current was stronger than the ship's speed.
On these are the Deck Officers and the Radio. Añaterve Sánchez (Master), Antonio Pérez Almoguera (Chief Mate), Xavier Brugarolas (Second), the Third and her wife, and in the middle Pedro Romero (Radio) and her wife Pepi.
And on this instead Xavier is Juan Zamora (Deck Cadet).
Getting some relax and fresh air, because the ship did not have air conditioned. Here is also Marisa, the Xavi's wife.
This was shot in Lobito (Angola) on October 1977. As the stay was long there was a lot of painting work going on.
Here, also in Lobito, in a trip to pick up the mail. The party were the Third Mate and his wife, the Carpenter, an A/B and I. On the background the ship.