“The Patanela Simply Vanished.”

gettyimages-147467077
A similar schooner to the doomed Patanela, Image by Charly Triballeau/AFP/GettyImages
While the tale of the Mary Celeste is one of the most enduring stories of missing ships, the Patanela is Australia’s very own maritime mystery.
This ship vanished without a trace while approaching Sydney Harbour in calm seas in November 1988, leaving behind only a barnacle-encrusted lifebuoy and a message in a bottle.
The Patanela was a 19-metre steel schooner that was known to be incredibly sturdy – having undertaken a number of Antarctic voyages and global circumnavigations under difficult conditions.
Michael Calvin was one of the crewmen aboard the yacht, and the last communication from the vessel came in the form of a letter posted by Calvin at Port Lincoln, sent to his twin sister.
The ship was headed up the coast on its way to Airlie beach, where Calvin and his friend John Blisset had been promised use of the Patanela for a charter business.
Just a few weeks later, however, the boat simply disappeared in waters off Sydney. No mayday call was received and no distress flares were sighted, no debris nor bodies turned up on Sydney’s shores – it simply vanished without a trace.
Almost 20 years after the ship’s disappearance, a couple on a beach at Eucla, near the border between Western Australia and South Australia, found a hand-written message in a bottle.
Dated just a week or two before the disappearance, the note read:”Hi there. Out here in the lonely Southern Ocean and thought we would give away a free holiday in the Whitsunday Islands in north Queensland, Australia.
Our ship is travelling from Fremantle, Western Australia, to Queensland to work as a charter vessel.
“The only other trace of the Patanela that has otherwise been found was a barnacle-encrusted lifebuoy that was found floating off Terrigal almost seven months after the disappearance.
Over the years there have been numerous rumoured sightings, leading to theories of hijacking and foul play, but nothing was ever confirmed about the fate of the Patanela and her crew.
Source: Australia’s Most Intriguing Unexplained Phenomena

Please Leave A Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s