Posted Today, 11:39 AM
Last edited by notamermaid; Today at 11:49 AM Reason: additional information
I've finally found an original specification for Viking longships that says 1.60 cm draft. I'm now assuming that the "1.90" that I've been seeing is a reference to their navigable depth, taking into account your comment about a "hands breadth" safety margin. Would this be correct? I wonder also; are there regulated "passing zones" in the Rhine, or is it at the captains' discretion? I'm reading a lot about traffic delays. (Our Amsterdam to Budapest cruise isn't until late October, when I'm expecting that most of this low water trouble will be over with. Or am I being overly optimistic?)
I am postponing the next lesson
and will go straight to trying to answer your questions. First, draft of Viking ships: the figure 1.90m has been around for so long in discussions that I cannot remember how it came about. sbbeachguy told us on 8 August their ship the Viking Mani has a draft of 1.53m. That is the lowest I have read for Viking. The Neptun shipyard where all the longships are built gives the draft as 1.60m. By the way, they also build the ships for Arosa Flussreisen and give their
draft as being 1.60m as well. I have read 1.90 and even 2.00m, which might suggest that you are right in thinking that the safety margin was calculated into this. But I cannot say if that is correct and why one would calculate it thus. I think it would more confuse than help. There have been many figures thrown around for drafts which in my opinion has something to do with differences according to "empty ship", "average draft" and "ship with full drinking water tanks". In 2015 one poster started a thread about why some ships sail and others do not and chengkp75 taught us (including me as you will read) much about draft and what affects it: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/show...s#post48304873
Your second question: as regards actual traffic regulations on the river I am quite lost. What I do know is that on some stretches overtaking is allowed while at some danger spots (also when the navigation channel is too narrow of course) this is prohibited. Passing is done with the help of communication and signals, is usually straightforward but can sometimes require coordinating (as explained to me by the captain on my river cruise ship). The Rhine has very dangerous bends where until a few decades ago you were only allowed to sail with the help of a qualified pilot. Yes, you probably guessed it, it is in the castle stretch. It is still dangerous round there and the radio signal is very sketchy so the traffic is regulated by "traffic lights"! They look like this: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rheins...ankeck-EBV.JPG
Your third question: as I have mentioned we have had an exceptionally dry year and the low water level will stay with us for a while from what it looks like at the moment, yet an actual prediction in figures is not possible. The maximum forecast/prediction experts give is seven days. To clarify "low water": In Kaub for example we currently have official low water status (86cm and lower, which is a statistical value averaged over ten years) but a rise above that figure - let's say 20cm - is still low. It affects barges but has hardly any negative affect on river cruising.
forgot the figures: Maxau 364cm, Kaub 71cm, Koblenz 72cm.
Transocean Belvedere Danube April 2013
English Channel Crossings 1984 to present:
Calais - Dover
Ostend - Dover
Dutch island hopping 1980's
Many Rhine river short trips