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When Nigel (last foto)–my parrot–molts, he’s raggedy, would win no beauty contests.  Behold a fully fledged Falcon from June 2012 and

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from yesterday, a molting one, an Allied boat in the process of becoming a Kirby one while moving a barge between sugar fields down south and a processing plant in Yonkers.  The deal is not new, but the manifestation of the change is ongoing.

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ATC 1800 is a dry bulk coastal barge built in 1966.  Will it molt as well?

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All fotos yesterday by Will Van Dorp.

My library for the time period  January 1, 2012 until today contains 11,244 fotos.  Starting from tomorrow, any 2012 fotos will be taken along the road.  So I decided to choose ONE foto per month, quite subjectively and without regard for this foto having previously been featured here.  I don’t claim these are the best of the month. Only 12 fotos, one per month.

January, Sandmaster . . .  waiting to refuel.  Today, Dec 22 . . .  Sandmaster was out there doing what it usually does, mining sand.

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February . . . Eagle Beaumont escorted in the Arthur Kill by Charles D. McAllister.

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March . . . side by side, CSAV Suape and bulker Honesty, Pacific bound through the Miraflores locks, demonstrating graphically what panamax means.

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April . . . red-trimmed Taurus west bound on the KVK, cutting past Advance Victoria.  And just today, I saw Taurus, now blue-trimmed, heading north between Manhattan and Jersey City.

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Choosing just one foto per month is tough, but for May, here’s Swan packed and almost ready to go hulldown toward Africa with these specimens of the Crowley, Reinauer, and Allied fleets.

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June . . . Weeks Shelby tows shuttle Enterprise from JFK toward Manhattan.

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July and an unforgettable 4th using Pegasus as subject under the rocket’s glare

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August . . . and coal-fired Badger heads into the sunset . . . and Wisconsin.

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September, and a parade of vessels including Urger and Buffalo leave the Federal Lock bound for Waterford.   My inimitable platform here is Fred’s Tug44.

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At the start of the Great Chesapeake Schooner race, crew is setting sail on the unique tugantine Norfolk Rebel.  In the distance, it’s Pride of Baltimore 2.

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Coming into the home stretch from Montreal, it’s Atlantic Salvor delivering segments of the WTC1 antenna.

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And December . . .  it’s Stena Primorsk looming over the USCG vessels.   At this time, Stena Primorsk was impatient to load that first hold with “north dakota crude,” only to experience the malfunction that has left her temporarily disabled upriver, its outer hull gashed open.

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Tomorrow I hit the road . . . gallivanting and visiting season.  I thank all of you for reading, many of you for helping me get these fotos, lots of you for correcting my errors and supplying missing info. Happy New Year and let’s pray for much-needed Peace on Earth . . . .

Shuttles and warships and barks come and go, but the work in the boro never quits.  Greets to all the crew on Falcon (1970),

Crystal Cutler (2010),

Kimberly Poling (1994),

First Coast (1968) and Grace D,

Mary Turecamo, barge Tennessee, and Explorer of the Seas in the background of several of the shots above,

Cecilia Miller and an unidentified WaterTaxi over by Brooklyn Ferry Landing,

All fotos by will Van Dorp, who will be “on assignment” for a few days.

Meanwhile some ponderables:

Movies to see:  Terraferma (maybe Wednesday night) and Beasts of the Southern Wild . . .

A new radio show to create called Boat Talks . . . now that Tom and Ray are parking it . . .

Kirbyfication, which looks

like this on Norwegian Sea, is only one transformation, although if you asked me to personify and interpret, I’d say Norwegian looks positively

mortified in these fotos.  “OMG!!  I can’t bear bare   . . .

myself, can’t bear to see this,” she seems to say.

Here’s the changes from Barbara C (October 2010) to

Arabian Sea sand stack decorations (March 2012) to

this past weekend.

Others, like Miss Yvette take things much more in stride from  here (third foto down) to June 2011

to yesterday.

Heron transforms from this March 2011 foto to

this one last week.  And a year from now, as she plys waters off Equatorial Guinea . . . what will that look like?

Sun Road was clearly not always known that way, although

one of my sources was of no value.

For a thrilling transformation story, check out The Skipper & the Eagle, which relates how Horst Wessel became Eagle back in 1946.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

If you like to hear Jefferson Airplane, click here:  their lyric based on a John Wyndham sci-fi novel goes “Life is change.  How it differs from the rocks . . .”

Note the Crowley props and the orange-clad crew.  Doubleclick enlarges image.

Note the huge design difference between Socrates (1966, 3200 hp) and

Heron (1968, 3200 hp).  

My question is this:  what is the actual weight added to Swan by these five tugs, one barge, and one crewboat?  Does the load change the draft of Swan at all, given that she like any vessel is ballasted as needed?  And I do not know the answer.

For outatowners, these shots from Bay Ridge show the “west” end of the Verrazano Bridge.  Yesterday’s fotos were taken from the bluff more or less just above the white dome of the lighthouse.

And for this foto, I pivoted slightly toward the south, capturing both towers of the Bridge.  Entering the Narrows is a ferry and dredger

Terrapin Islandwhich as recently as two and a half months ago was sucking up silt from Jed’s coast in southern Georgia.

All fotos this morning by Will Van Dorp, who probably has one more installment on Swan.  For the title, my apologies to Marcel Proust.

(Note:  Doubleclick enlarges.) The title . . . those were the exact words John Watson emailed me last night.  If the message had been “hawk is down”  . . . or “condor …”  it would have alarmed me, but instead I charged my camera so that right after work I could zoom over to Fort Wadsworth for these shots.  By one, I found Alert loaded onto barge BFT No. 38, which

was already on Swan.  Gabby Miller was present, of course.  Lined up on the Brooklyn side was a cast of characters identified as

Cavalier, Pioneer, and Mars . . . in custody of Charles D. McAllister.

The three Crowley tugs glided onto Swan‘s back, extending beyond the hull on

both sides.

For outatowners, that’s Manhattan in the distance looking across most of what’s called the Upper Bay.  The Lower Bay is behind me, as is the Verrazano Bridge.    On the right is the boro of Brooklyn.  The red tugs are Charles D. McAllister and McAllister Sisters Girls.

If you wonder about my shifting POV, the tide turned from ebb to flood during loading, and with it a bank of fog crept in and out, several times.

Next on board . . . Socrates, who in spite of the fog, found

a place midships, starboard.

This left space for

Heron!  It’s not quite Noah’s ark, but I’m hoping Bowsprite will find a spare moment to drawing this vessel with its cargo almost as diverse as that of Pi Patel.

Loading completed, Susan Miller glides by.  No doubt Swan has already begun to deballast to rise back up, and tomorrow the menagerie onboard Swan will be high and dry.  After that, next stop, Nigeria.

I include this foto for outatowners.  The vessel farthest left and most distant is Swan;  I took it on the ferry about halfway back to Manhattan.   Land to the right of King Emerald is Staten Island.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Some related posts include Mighty Servant loaded last December, Blue Marlin loaded a year ago, and Socrates last summer . .  seventh foto down.

When I took this foto in 2006, I knew none of the folks depicted;  more about this foto at the end.

This Sunday in the sixth boro is the 19th annual tugboat race.  If you are free, come down to Pier 84.  Will Beth M. McAllister be there?  the young Pegasus?

Viking was partly there last year.  Might she race this year?

Might Tasman Sea clench her pins and sprint to the finish?

Will Bohemia lope ahead of the field?

Will Lee T Moran show just how misleading the “Gramma” part of her name is?

Will Socrates miraculously spring free from these lines and parade over the finish line first?

Will Brendan Turecamo and all these other occupied Moran vessels churn up the one-nautical-mile race course?

In previous years, the weekend following the tug race in the sixth boro, there was a tug roundup in Waterford, NY.  Bad news this year:  because of Irene’s reckless bluster and immoderate rain, the 2011 Waterford Tug Roundup  has been cancelled.  I will miss the puppytugs,

the pushoffs of fiberglass into steel,

the carefully matched performers,

the hometown favorites taking on the outatowners.    But I’m not going to miss

the hospitality of Waterford and its fine folks . . .  because I’m coming up anyhow.  See you on the 9th or 10th.

Thanks to Stray for sending along this link to fotos of Irene devastation upriver.  I feel sick.  Crow and Wire, #94, 119, and 181, were at the Roundup last year.  Black Knight, seen in a tugster post a week ago, shows up in #178.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Type Kristin Poling into the search window here, and you’ll find lots of references to the 1934 vessel, which still works as hard as ever.  One of my favorites is here.  The foto below shows her under load, looking ever so slightly likea vessel from 120 years before her . . . if you lop off the paddle wheels.   To read how Clermont intersected my ife, click here.    By the way, whatever became of the project to build a replica of Clermont a few years back?

Foto by will Van Dorp.

How many of these tugboats cruising through along the Brooklyn waterfront here can you identify?  One might be as rare as a Mississippi kite soaring over New York.  Answers and more info follows.

And what’s this?  Also a rare film Manhatta (click here to watch the entire 10-minute 1921 silent film) by Charles Sheeler and Paul Strand greets gallery-goers at the Whitney entering “modern Life:  Edward Hopper and his Time.”  Only a few weeks remain to see this, as it closes on April 10.  In this capture from the video, a half dozen steam tugs wrestle RMS Aquitania into a finger pier.  The film becomes tugboat-intensive at the 6:25 point.

Also, Working Harbor Committee presents a rare and exciting documentary followed by a panel discussion THIS Wednesday in New York;  tickets are available here.  I have to work elsewhere that night, but panelists will include my friends Ann Loeding (below) and Jessica Dulong (scroll through), but also

but also many others like Cmdr Linda A. Sturgis.

If you haven’t checked bowsprite’s latest work, check it out here.  What caught my attention other than the actual fantastic drawing was her use of the term “wooden freighter.”  Well, Marion M was built in 1932, and that–from this collage of fotos–was a very different era, a time when freighters could still be wooden vessels.

Back to the first foto of this post:  from left to right and excluding the white vessel in the foreground, it’s Sea Raven, East Coast, and Penn  No. 4 . . . all of which you’ve seen on tugster before . . . and can relocate by typing each name into the search window.  But that black-hulled, white and blue trim vessel in the foreground . . . is Hercules.  I believe she’s a 2011 launch from Washburn & Doughty.

Is it possibly this is her first voyage and that she’s not yet seen the GOM waters where she live?  If so, these are some rare snaps?  Here she heads for the Narrows, Miss Gill behind her and Amy Moran in foreground.  And why do I not recall having seen Amy Moran before?

Fotos of Ann Loeding and Linda A. Sturgis are used by permission from Jonathan Atkin.  All other fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Cold waters of the KVK were not warmed  by this swarm of colorful steel housing powerful engines.  From left to right here:  Margaret Moran, Torm Carina, Evening Mist, Joan Moran, and facing us on the far side of the waterway, North Fighter.

At the same moment less than a mile away and at the same moment, Louise Knutsen prepared to turn south, bound for sea.  Her port of registry is posted as Haugesund, which I had to look up.

Nicholas Miller helps with crew change, and

ABC-1 assists with supplies.

Scotty Sky glides by, looking more submarine than tanker.

BBC Germany bunkers in the anchorage over by BAT.  Tug on the bunker barge looks like HMS Liberty. BAT is a Cass Gilbert-designed harbor gem.

Meanwhile, west side of the harbor, Michele Jeanne and crew survey while bobbing in the wakes of  vessels like Heron.  An unidentified bulk carrier loads scrap metal in the distance.

For some beautiful contemporary maritime paintings, check out the site of Melinda Hannigan here.

OKAY . . . I have to put up one more foto, taken just seconds after the lead foto in this post.

The harbor never sleeps, especially not with these neon safety colors mixed in.   The warm colors might not warm the waters, but they do, the air.  More Torm orange here and here;  if I didn’t like that shade so well, I’d be tempted to call it “tormented orange.”  Carina, despite Danish registry, was built in Korea.  To see work at the Danish shipyard of Odense, click here.

Fotos by Will Van Dorp.

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My job . . . Summer 2014

Graves of Arthur Kill

Click to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

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Seth Tane American Painting

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Henry's Obsession

My imaginings and bowsprite's renderings of Henry Hudson's trip through the harbor 400 years ago.

Tale of Two Marlins

Blue Marlin spent 600+ hours loading tugs and barges in NYC Sixth Boro. Click on image for presentation made to NY Ship Lore and Model Club, July 25, 2011.

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