A Rainy Day in Queenscliff

Last week, the grandchildren came down from Melbourne.  We all drove to Queenscliff to get some information for a school project. It rained from the moment we arrived till I waved them all goodbye on the car ferry for Sorrento.

Here are a couple of the photos taken.

black lighthouse and point nepean web White lighthouse and modern towers

Queenscliff was founded as a safe harbour for boats and a pilot base for sea pilots helping ships make the treacherous passage through Port Phillip Heads.  To navigate the narrow channel safely, ship’s masters need to align two lighthouses – the Black Lighthouse and the White Lighthouse.  The first photograph shows the black lighthouse, and view across The Rip to Point Nepean.  The second image shows the old white lighthouse, and the newer towers now used to guide shipping.

The pilot service began in 1838.  Initially, a watchman in a tower would alert the pilot that a ship was nearing the heads.  The pilot would then row out and board the ship via rope ladder and steer the ship through Port Phillip Heads (known as ‘The Rip’).  Later, the pilots were based on a ship, anchored outside The Rip.  Many ships and many lives were lost in the early days. Nowadays, sea pilots use fast launches from their Queenscliff base.  There is no longer a need for ships to stop to take on a pilot as the launch can match a ship’s speed.  However, the transfer from launch is still a highly skilled process.pilate boat nearing jetty

The modern pilot launch approaching the Pilot’s Jetty.

In the 1890s, fearing an attack on Melbourne by the Russian navy, a fort was built, with gun emplacements overlooking the heads.  This photograph is of the original guard-house.  Fort watchhouse

The fishing industry and tourism have always been major business for Queenscliff.  The new marina supports both recreational and commercial fishing boats, and provides mooring for the car ferry between Queenscliff and Sorrento, saving travellers a road trip of over 200 kilometres.  queenscliff marina and shops  car ferry docking (from tower stairs) 

The Queenscliff Maritime Museum is an excellent place to begin research into Queenscliff’s heritage.  This photograph shows the old life boat, which was housed on Queenscliff Pier, and the rig used to save shipwreck victims.  Maritime museum lamp and life boat

I used Camera Raw, then a combination of Camera Raw manipulation with HDR and Photoshop (in a huge rush) to get over 200 photos ready for grandson number two to make a choice for his project.   Having just purchased Martin Evening’s comprehensive Adobe Photoshop CS6 for Photographers I was able to create a Photoshop action to quickly create web ready Jpeg files.

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