07 August 2010

No 36 - We all live in a Freo submarine – Freemantle – 21st November 2009

I had many great days out in Freemantle, or Freo as the locals call it, the port town 19km (12 Miles) Southwest of Perth, from cycling out there via the Swan River, visiting the fantastic markets, great fish and chips to stunning sunsets.

But one of the best days out there was when my Flatmate & I visited the Maritime museum and did their Submarine Ovens tour. I have been on many Ships, planes etc in museums but despite having been to places that had Submarines tours had new got to do such a tour before.

Arriving at Freemantle station it was only a few minutes walk to the impressive museum which architecturally has some similarity's with the Sydney opera house.

We had an hour or so to look round the museum before our sub tour they had the Americas cup winning yacht Australia II on display there along with the story of the Boxing Kangaroo which was the official mascot.

Time soon passed and it was time for the Sub tour, we had an very enthusiastic tour guide who actually served on this sub during it’s early years from 1969-1972 and even told us he was now 79 - before he ran up the ladder to the entrance at the top without even breaking sweat while the rest of us were all gasping for air time we reached the top especially given that it was something like 32 degrees!

After a bit of time admiring the views from the top and taking some photos we then descended down a ladder into the rear of the Sub and ended up in the Torpedo bay!

Everything was so impressive I almost felt that I was on some Space station especially given the the sub had several airlocks to divide it into sections in case of emergency's

Do I look like an astronaut on a space station going though that airlock?

Carrying on through the sub we soon passed through the living quarters, not quite so impressive, narrow triple bunk beds making some of the 10 bed hostel rooms I've stayed at seem like 5 star hotels!

We then saw the main control center of the sub which for 60's technology was very impressive.

Things continued to amaze me as we went into the engine room, I have never seen such a huge engine!

We were told how the sub could if necessary stay underwater for 6 months and travel the distance of twice around the world without refueling!

There was one more section of the sub to see before exiting up the ladder and for the crewmen it was the most important section of the Sub, Can you guess from the pic below why?............................

 The fact that a fire extinguisher is right by it just proves it's importance, have you guessed yet?

OK here's a Clue

Yes it was where the beer was all stored, each crewman was rashend to a bottle per day.

After about half an hour in the Sub  it was time to climb up the long ladder to exit the Sub It sure was a fascinating tour and a Bargain at only $8 (£4.50) including the museum entry

We had some more time on the roof of the sib before saying goodbye the the fantastic tour guide.

We then went off to have some fantasitic Fish n Chips before going for a walk round Freemantle to walk them off!

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