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This gateway to the sixth boro dazzles at dawn, with out traffic or with.
Here are the specs for the 12-year-old vessel going under the almost 50-year-old bridge.
In the distance, that’s the Newark Bay Bridge, located north of Ports Elizabeth and Newark.
Inbound . . .
All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who finally watched Saturday Night Fever for the first time, because of the bridges scenes. It turned out to be a much better movie than this non-discoing blogger ever imagined. See it if you haven’t, for a throwback to Bay Ridge (mostly) back in 1977 . . . which started with a president named Ford , new computers were Commodore PETs and Apple IIs, and the Concorde started to fly to NYC.
It has been over six years since I first used this title, yet a bridge appears as header for every post. And just in case you’re wondering, I will keep that version of the header no matter what gets announced the day after tomorrow. The VZ Bridge is our Arc de Triomphe. An April morning in 2008 I caught this foto of the QM2 arriving here for the first time. Foto taken from the northwest (NW) side of the Narrows.
Each year representatives of the fleet pass –here USS Nitze–under, with added moisture added by FDNY. Foto from the SE.
Dozens of vessels pass beneath the structure daily. I recall how thrilled I was to drive my boat underneath . . . in 2003, as I was moving it to the Great Lakes and myself into the sixth boro. Aside from its symbolic and logistical value, the VZ is beautiful–here seen from the NE.
It’s most beautiful at dawn.
But the other morning as I caught this, I wonder why the bridgegreen version of navygray was chosen as its color. I think of the Golden Gate, the Purple People Bridge, the yellow bridges of Pittsburgh.
What prompts this post is a sight I saw from the SE a few weeks ago . . . what looked first like a high-hanging fruit hanging west of the Brooklynside tower. I wondered if it’d always been there but somehow I’d missed it.
Zooming in, though, I saw it was a paint crew, at least five painters. Putting on camouflage or daubing antirust?
Maybe preparing to change the color depending on the results of a horse race?
Or prepping for a new VZ Bridge color in honor of the bridge’s jubilee . . in about a year and a half?
Happy May Day . . all fotos by Will Van Dorp. Anyone know why the official spelling of the bridge does not match that of its namesake?
Click here for an ice post from two years and two months ago, featuring the very same tug–Kimberly Poling–with a slightly different paint job. Know this bridge?
Here’s a closer up shot of the tug/barge. Our destination is the top of the cliff on the far side. Know the name?
Here’s looking north from below the bridge. Freight travels on the west side of the Hudson, although this particular CSX train
The east side of the river has AmTrak and commuter passenger lines and
here a New York Naval Militia vessel.
By the time we’re ready to start the serious climb, Kimberly is about ready to make the right turn around the base of Dunderberg Mountain.
Here’s our destination, Anthony’s Nose, as seen with a long lens.
And as seen from the top looking west and
looking south. By the time, we got up there, Kimberly was already beyond Croton Point. Here’s a previous tugster post from Croton Point. The land directly across the river from the base of the flagpole is Iona Island.
and approaching Tappan Zee Bridge, not visible.
All fotos by Will Van Dorp.
Here’s a tugster post from 2.5 years ago showing the Bear Mountain Bridge–the bridge featured here and located about 40 miles north of the Battery– from underneath. . . scroll through. Climb Anthony’s Nose soon . . . before the leaves happen.
Surprise, lunacy, and freebies commingle in this post. At one point, my perspective shifts a half dozen miles also.
0859 . . . as seen from the “swimming pool” aka Faber Park, Staten Island-side just east of the Bayonne Bridge. That’s Shooters Island (see a then/now post I did here) off the bow of Zim Qingdao. Here‘s something to know about the place Qingdao.
that looks like a kid! Could this be a contemporary Zim Family Robinson . . . sans the shipwreck of course!!
0940 . . . I’ve jumped onto my horse and raced over to the Brooklyn side of the Narrows. What directed my attention to the Brooklynside base of the VZ Bridge was ships’ horns: one long blast . .. danger! Is it this? At least six “smokers” . . .
I was half expecting these invulnerables-whose engines will never stall maybe– to jump the bow wave . . . . NYTugmaster links to a WSJ article on “playing in urban commercial waters” here.
Unrelated: Want a free boat ride on Saturday, tickets are available here at 7 pm today. Actually, there are no truly free boat rides; support historic vessels of your choice.
If you’re looking for a thriller to read this summer, try The Ship Killer. Bonnie gave me hers . . . after I’d noticed in prominently displayed at my local Barnes & Noble. There’s info here, and I agree with the first review there by Jim A . . . except I’d go farther and say it’s like Moby Dick . . . but you get inside the whale’s twisted mind just as you get inside Ahab’s lunacy. I was predisposed NOT to like it, I didn’t BUT it was a thrilling ride.
And speaking of thrillers . . . here’s an American jetski adventure stopped by Russian tanks and helicopters, from a blog yesterday.
Maersk Kentucky turns at least 90 degrees to starboard after passing under the Bayonne Bridge. Beyond Shooters Island lies the city of Elizabeth, NJ. More close-ups of Maersk Kentucky–eleven years running and a fifth of a mile long– tomorrow, but for now, she draws more than 30 feet max . . . and notice the mud trail she stirs up.
Here’s a satellite view of Shooters Island; I believe the vintage foto of Shooters I posted the other day was taken from midway between the A pushpin and the New York ramp of the Bayonne Bridge. Click on the satellite foto to see where things lie in relation to Manhattan. Most of the container traffic through the port of “New York” operates through Port Elizabeth.
Related: See Johna and Vladimir’s homage to the Bridge here.
There always needs to be a first time, for everything. Maria J (ex-Jesus Saves) did it for me . . .
my passing from innocence to experience. I picked the day, bridge dedication plus 80 years with vivid bridge shadow on the water. Land in the distance is Elizabeth, NJ; point on right is Bergen Point . . . a section of Bayonne, NJ that once was a farm of tanks . . . an orchard if you prefer.
Zim Virginia was the first ship
Happy dedication day! If you missed the link to the pdf published by the Port Authority upon the 75th anniversary, click here. Great vintage pics. If you missed the diagram of the planned approximately 80′ raising of the roadbed, click here.
All foto by Will Van Dorp.
The pattern here is what divides those sets of fotos, the bridge . . the one that turns 80. Page through this fabulous PANYNJ pamphlet.
or the Bergen Point-Port Richmond Bridge, mimicking the name of the ferry it displaced.
All fotos by Will Van Dorp.
So concludes this series . . . with total time elapsed from Qatar nosing around Bergen Point until Suez Canal Bridge‘s stern clearing the west side of the Bayonne Bridge . . . about 50 minutes. Furthermore, a fourth vessel–Seatrout–traversed in that same time period, as did RTC 135, moved by Nicole Leigh Reinauer.
So while you’re enjoying –I hope–these fotos, let me do some math. Using deadweight tonnage info available in that magic library called the internet, I total the cargo capacity of these four ships and one barge as . . . 223,157 tons. And I’ll assume (just an assumption for sake of discussion) that each of these vessels was at its peak capacity.
And if you’re wondering why none of these fotos were taken by the new camera, I was lugging it, but it confounded me by moving one of its own buttons and not working until I got home.
On Sunday, APL Qatar was tied up at the dock at Howland Hook.
Note the snow on the Elizabethport bank. Imari is the smaller vessel forward of AP Qatar. I wonder if she’s the only vessel ever named for export porcelain?? Given the marine environment, I can’t imagine feeling safe on a vessel named for a material so fragile, but I digress. And let me digress some more, the snowy bank a century ago was home to Crescent Shipyard, where an early generation of submarines was built. Click here for fotos and story.
As of this writing, Qatar’s already at the dock in Savannah after having arrived and departed Norfolk. By early afternoon Sunday, she had been backed down, nosed her way past Bergen Point and
Funding to change the bridge . . . wonder why tolls have recently increased on all the bridges over the sixth boro? Details on bridge modification–if it’s a done deal at this point–have been scant. Will the bridge have an 80th party?
Ever wonder what bridge was the longest steel arch prior to Bayonne’s acquiring that distinction in 1931? Before you find out by clicking here, a clue is that it’s also over a sixth boro waterway.
See the crewman on the bridge wing looking up? What’s he monitoring?
and now she’s headed for a portal that turns 80 this month, the Bayonne Bridge, dedicated on November 13, 1931. For the next 46 years, vessels passing here like Suez Canal Bridge–escorted by Maurania III and Amy C McAllister–could say
All fotos by Will Van Dorp.