Shipspotters all over the world => Trip reports => Topic started by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 02:33:29 am

Title: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 02:33:29 am
Time to report on my recent trip to Japan, just like I did before.

I had a pretty clear idea that the recent virus outbreak may foil my plans if I waited any longer, and it almost happened: I’ve arrived back to Korea on the very day the Korean government declared “Code Red” for some areas. Not for the one I am currently working at, though, but I’ve got no illusions, as it is not question of “if”, but “when”.

Then, again, my hometown in Croatia was considered “Northern Italy” until 74 years ago, and we all know what’s going on there now…

Anyway, back to my trip. The plan was to take a bus to Sasebo after landing at Fukuoka, go visit Oshima shipyard, then take a bus to Nagasaki, then by train to Taira to take the ferry to Nagasu on the Ariake sea (to see whatever was going on at the local JMU shipyard), and then take the train all the way to Onomichi. That would be Day 1.

Day 2 would start with a ferry ride from Onomichi to Tsuneishi shipyard, than back by bus and train to Mihara, to take a fast boat to Okunoshima island, to see the local Imabari shipyard, then proceed to Kure via Hiroshima, see the naval base and JMU shipyard, and then take a ferry to Matsuyama on the Shikoku island, and reach Imabari for the night.

Day 3 would start with a visit to Imabari shipyard, followed by a boat ride to Mihara via Innoshima island, to see whatever was there to see along the way, and then a fast train ride back west, to look at Mitsubishi shipyard in Shimonoseki.

That was the plan, and the map roughly shows my intended path, with bus being red, train green, and boats/ferries blue.

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 02:45:10 am
Sasebo at night, and the usual guest, “Ferry Namizi”:

Also, high speed passenger ferry “Repido”:

I took an early morning ferry to Oshima, and here are the results:

High speed passenger ferry “Rapid Excel”:

Ships fitting out at Oshima shipyard, first “Beate Oldendorff” & “Boliche”:

“Boliche” by her own:

“Ultra Incahuasi”:

“Earth Harmony”:

…and one new battery operated car ferry, “e-Oshima”:

Also, as Sasebo is an important naval base, there was a JMSDF destroyer departing, DD104 “Kirisame”:

…and a large US navy auxiliary vessel, USS Emory S. Land:

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 02:57:48 am
In Nagasaki, I was just on time to catch a passenger ferry to one of the islands close by, allowing me to see whatever was going on in Nagasaki Bay.

One large Japan Coast Guard ship was almost complete at Mitsubishi shipyard, PLH33 “Reimei”:

…while the other was on the slipway, the same one that built the mighty “Musashi” battleship. PLH34:

Otherwise, the yard was busy with the construction or refit of naval ships, like DD120 “Shiranui”:

…and DDG178 “Ashigara”:

I’ve also seen a “classic” style fishery patrol vessel, “Ookuni”:

I had hopes to see some large tanker fitting out afloat at Japan Marine United Ariake shipyard in Nagasu, but there were only two large tankers being built in the dry dock:

And that was all for day one.

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 03:40:25 am
Day two started with me strolling leisurely from my hotel right next to the ferry terminal in Onomichi, only to see the ferry I usually took just departing. That reminded me to check next time for the ACTUAL ferry schedule, not the one I was familiar with 5 years ago. So, I have missed the opportunity to check on Onomichi and Tsuneishi shipyards, but now I remember that I did not make this “report” for my trip there back in July 2019, so here are some “old news”.

Onomichi Dockyard, “Blue Butterfly”:

Tsuneishi shipyard, “Seagem”:

“AM Shraddha”:

This time, I’ve only managed to catch one reefer at Mukaishima dockyard, “Shin Izu”:

However, it was not all for the worst, as the ferry schedule from Mihara to Okunoshima has also changed, and I would have missed the ride, had I made it to Tsuneishi ferry.

So, at Imabari shipyard near Mihara there were some large bulkers under construction:

“Ultra Serval”:

“Atagosan” (this one, however, is from my July 2019 trip):

…as is this barge, “Steel Hub 4”:

More recent one, “Cape Olympia”:

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 03:53:10 am
By the time I’ve reached Kure, the rain has stopped, and I had just enough time to take a short harbor cruise around the naval base, with plenty of JMSDF hardware on display.

Like the landing ship “Kunisaki” LST4003:

Or this old “Soryu” class submarine:

Also, a chance to take a close look at some weapons systems, like this one:

At JMU shipyard in Kure there was a large tanker, “Toya”:

…and some other ships, which I will upload here after I get their proper identification.
Then I took a ferry to Matsuyama, sailing past the ore terminal, with this bulker to be seen, “Antonella Lembo”:

There was also a ferry under construction for the Filipino owner at Kegoya Dockyard, “Starlite Venus”:

There was some traffic in the Inland Sea, like the high speed passenger ship “Miyajima”:

…and her slower cousin, “Sea Paseo”:

“Ferry Kurushima”, in new colors, was waiting for her evening departure:

And that was all for day 2.

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 04:04:34 am
At Imabari shipyard, I’ve seen one not so typical Evergreen feeder, “Ever Core”:

And one bulker under construction, “Federal Izumi”:

Then I took a ferry to Innoshima, to see some local shipyards.

First, a JCG boat at Imabari port, CL173 “Ukikaze”:

Then, a small gas carrier at Hakata shipyard, “Eco Texiana”:

At Innoshima, a RO-RO under construction, “Hoyo Maru”:

Not so far away, another bulker under construction, “African Oasis”:

And then it was time to go back towards Shimonoseki.

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: lappino on March 10, 2020, 04:22:52 am
At Shimonoseki, I took a boat to the Ganryujima island, overlooking Mitsubishi shipyard, and also letting me take a really good look at all the traffic through the narrows between Kyushu and Honshu main Japanese islands. There were some interesting floating objects to be seen, like this one, container ship “Nagara”:

Also, some more traditional ships, like the “Mirai”:

One large ferry was docked nearby, the “Settsu:

…while her sister was fitting out at Mitsubishi shipyard, the “Yamato”:

At Shimonoseki port, there were some Sea Shepherd’s nemeses, “Yushin Maru”:

…and “Nisshin Maru”:

“Ferry Naminoue” was in dry dock:

And new passenger/cargo ship “Salvia Maru” was fitting out:

And that was that for the time being, as Korea and Japan have just started a passive-aggressive stand-off involving limiting traveling to each country. It will eventually get solved, so I hope I’ll take some more trips to Japan… 😊

Thanks for your attention!

Title: Re: My latest trip to Japan
Post by: MS3866 on March 10, 2020, 02:17:56 pm
Hi Vlad, thank you for an excellent report as usual with power trip in so short schedule!
I now stopped travelling those places beacuse of coronavirus, but I hope this disater will disappear one or two months later...