: views from the Hill

Sunday, February 04, 2007

The Queen is visiting ...

The Queen Mary 2 is in port, the largest ship ever to sail into the San Francisco Bay.

We walked over to Fort Mason to have a good look from one of the piers. (... and, of course, stopped by Book Bay at Fort Mason before we walked on home.)

Thousands of people lined the shore to greet the QM2 on its way in. The bay was filled with boats. Quite a turnout considering the Super Bowl was competition for all the attention at the waterfront.

The QM2 was due in at 3P but didn't show until 4P. Just as well for us as we'd stopped on our way at Pompei's Grotto for some crab sandwich lunches.

The story was that the waves were a bit rugged outside the Gate and the bar pilot had difficulty getting aboard. Or it may have been a different reason. Stories scattered like pigeons in front of an unleashed puppy.

What was true was that once in port, the QM2 had to spend hours hanging around off Treasure Island until the bar pilot finally docked her at 8P. The tides in the bay are pretty strong and the bar pilot wanted to bring the QM2 in while the tide was changing for full to ebb and moving least.

Tricky maneuvering. We watched as this huge mammoth inched into Pier 27 and tied up.

The bulk of the passengers offload today to spend some time in San Francisco and then head home. An equal number of boarding passengers replace those leaving and continue with the ship on its journey around the world.

QM2 leaves tonight at 8P when, again, the tides will be changing.

QM2 into the Golden GateQM2 comes through the Golden Gate

QM2 Fireboat splashes water in greetingQM2 w/ greeting from fire boat
QM2 boats! boats! and Coast Guard helicopterQM2 Boats! and the USCG helicopter

welcoming crowd on pier at Fort Masonwelcoming crowd at Fort Mason pier

QM2 past AlcatrazQM2 passing Alcatraz
pier 27 eveningPier 27 night shot while docking

pier 27 Monday morningPier 27 Monday AM

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