Monday, November 30, 2015

Haze Gray, but not quite Destroyers

The kids were visiting friends and other halves of families on Thanksgiving proper so we gave thanks as a family last night.  As a result, my mind is experiencing a triptophan induced stupor and creativity is at bingo.  

So, scurrying for ideas for my Monday scrawl, I read through Tuna's post, entitled Jets and Sunset. I thought to my self "Well....I've got some of those.  I'll just do a Part 2."
Jet and Sunset.  Jet is just above the ridge line right center.  Sidney Harbor Bridge just above ridgeline near the setting sun.  Taken from rear of Solstice as we sailed out of Syndey Harbor.
Then I read in the comments from Tuna's post a heart rending plea from Skip, one of the long time friends here at Sarge's place.  He'd like more Destroyers.  Now, as Readers are well aware, I'm an AF Fighter Pilot (Ok, I was, when I was young, skinny and had hair). Sarge is an AF Aircraft Maintainer, and Tuna is a Navy NFO.  Where are we gonna get Destroyers?

Being ever so resourceful, I reach deep into my clue bag and find the next best thing. While I don't have any actual destroyers, I did manage to capture images of some ships our English speaking friends from the Southern Hemisphere sail.

HMAS Sydney

The first time we saw her was on a water taxi from Watson's Bay to Circular Quay.  The taxi made a stop at the pier seen just in front of Sydney's bow in the picture above.  From that perspective, she looked fairly large and I wondered what kind of ship she was.  According to the source of all completely verified knowledge,  HMAS Sydney  is an Adelaide class Guided-Missile frigate.  She was constructed in the US based on the Oliver Hazard Perry Class frigates. Commissioned in 1983,  She participated in both the 1990 and 2001 Persian Gulf Festivities  and unbeknownst to me, she was decommissioned on 7 November 2015, 5 days after this picture was taken.  


HMAS Canberra and HMAS Adelaide
HMAS Canberra (L) HMAS Adelaide (R)
Both ships are Landing Helicopter Docks and are based on the Spanish Navy's Juan Carlos I.  Let's get the important stuff out of the way first.  They ARE capable of conducting fixed wing operations. Yay!  But the Aussie Navy is not planning on doing so.  Boo!  

Also, interesting in a Down Under sort of way,  Canberra is the first of the two to be commissioned, but her pennant number is L02.  Adelaide is expected to be commissioned this December, but her pennant number is L01.  



You know Navies and their traditions.  Evidently, because the prior HMAS Adelaide, a Frigate, had pennant number 01, subsequent ships with that name would have the same number.

Anyhoo, (to quote a Rhode Islander we all know), the ships will carry 8 helicopters in a standard load, but can carry up to 18.  They can be loaded with 110 vehicles and over a thousand troops.


HMNZS Te Kaha
Taken from the Restaurant on Solstice, Deck 14.  



HMNS Te Kaha is one of ten ANZAC class Frigates and one of two serving in the New Zealand Navy.  The ships came about as a result of the mid-80's lovers spat between the Kiwis and the US.  The Kiwis decided they needed to shore up some relationships in their local area, so, instead of buying new ships from the US, they entered into an agreement with the Aussies to by two of the 10 ships with an option to buy two more.  The decision raised considerable protest based on cost as well as ship capability versus the assigned mission.  The Kiwis were looking for more capability to enforce their  Economic Exclusion Zone, more but less capable ships was the counter argument.

Te Kaha, in Maori, means Fighting Prowess or Strength and the ship has shown that by participating in Operation Enduring Freedom

Earlier this year, she sailed to Gallipoli to participate in activities marking the 100th anniversary of that debacle.  More of which to follow on that subject.
Te Kaha in the lead.  Never got a good enough look at the trailing ship to ID.



Finally, an unidentified Patrol Boat in Sydney Harbor rounds out my retinue of pictures of Navy Floaty Thngs.

19 comments:

  1. Ah, the Perrys. I remember when they were young.

    The Aussies and Kiwi's have capable and professional navies, which makes sense. They've been trying to emulate the US over the past couple of decades though, which may not end well.

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    1. Yeah, I get ya. I remember when my Eagle wasn't 40 years old!

      Emulate equipment and tactics yes. Emulate strategy (assuming we have any) or policies, not so much.

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    2. Slightly ironic that the ANZACs, while Kraut designs, are chock-a-block with US weps and sensors (and helos).

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    3. Now that you mention it, the Te Kaha is a little wider in the shoulders than the Sydney isn't it?

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  2. Ah destroyers!

    I think I've mentioned on a couple of occasions that two of the progeny started their time in the Navy as tin can sailors. I've been aboard a few of those fine ships so I have an appreciation for things haze gray and underway.

    Some nice photos there Juvat.

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    1. Other than USS Kidd, I don't think I've been aboard anything smaller than an Ohio class SSBN, And the picture of the Kidd in the storm made me think that was just fine.

      Thanks.

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  3. The designation for a frigate back in the day was DL.
    That was short for Destroyer Leader.
    In those day they were slightly larger than Tin Cans, a little more heavily armed, and faster.
    In my book that makes them destroyers.
    Thanks.

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    1. Thanks for the inspiration and the explanation.

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    2. Which ,of course, immediately confused the rest of the world, for whom "Frigate" (F or FF) meant a ship slightly smaller, slower, and less well armed than a Destroyer, but slightly larger, faster, and better armed than a Corvette. France, Germany, Italy and others even have officer ranks based upon that e.g. "CorvettenKapitan" (=USN LCDR) and "FrigattenKapitan" (= USN CDR).

      I think Zumwalt started that nonsense. Anyway, glad we're back to normal in that sense; though what to call the LCS is still up in the air.

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    3. What to call LCS? I vote for "target," very expensive target.

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    4. I think the USAF trademarked the name "Target" for use with the F-35.

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  4. Love the sunset pic! Nice team effort we have going on here. I have lots of USN jet sunset pics, almost none of the USAF variety...hint hint.

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    1. Unfortunately, the only camera I had available when I was flying used wet plate technology. So, I don't have a lot of shots, sunset or not.

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  5. In 2009 I worked with the Aussies and New Zealanders, and was aboard both HMNS Te Kaha, and HMAS Adelaide (Perry Class Frigate) along with HMAS Parramatta. I was invited aboard Parramatta for the Remembrance Day celebration. Quite a moving ceremony. And they ARE very professional!

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    1. I described the Remembrance Day ceremony on board the Solstice in an earlier post. Very moving. I finally found the final info I needed to write the post I've been thinking about for a bit. Should be up on Monday.

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    2. Looking forward to it. And yes moving is right...

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