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MS Maribelle
Viking River Cruises
from MS Maribelle Photos

photo

Along the river

Vertically sliding bollards within a lock can be used to lash a ship or boat against the sides. As the water level changes, the mooring device stays with the vessel.

The MS Maribelle was designed to fit into the locks along the Rhône and the Saône with only inches to spare on each side. The captain uses the rudders and bow thrusters to keep the vessel centered while traversing the locks. (Sometimes I woke up at 4 or 5 a.m. to the whining bursts of the bow thrusters as the ship went through a lock.)

Ships hang rubber bumpers over their sides to protect their hulls in locks, but some scuffing is inevitable. During the captain's farewell reception, the hotel manager claimed that the MS Maribelle's deckhands spent less time painting than sailors on other Rhône River vessels because captain Michel Fortier and second captain Sandrine Duwell were so skilled in maneuvering the ship through locks.

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More about Viking River Cruises:
MS Maribelle Cruise Review (21 pages)

Topics in this photo gallery:
MS Maribelle
Along the river
Chalon-sur-Saône
Beaune
Macon
Lyon
Vienne
Tournon-sur-Rhône, Vivarais Railroad
Viviers
Avignon
Les Baux de Provence
Arles
Pont du Gard