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Here was my biggest surprise . . ..  details at end.

I know upstate along the Hudson and in Vermont Irene did her devastation;  ditto in parts of New Jersey.  But this morning along the KVK, scuttlebutt was  . . . Irene who?  What hurricane?  The killside was cleaner at the expense of the water, which carried flotsam out with the ebb.  Straw and sticks floated seaward here, whereas upstate small boats attached to docks might be drifting.   Traffic on the KVK was noticeably eastbound . . . out of protection, like soon after I stopped by . . .  7:58 am Margaret Moran,

8:10, Liberty IV,

8:15  . . . this ubiquitous private boat counters the trend,

8:24 . . . Tasman Sea  and Jane A. Bouchard.    Note how sunny, clear, and calm it is less than 24 hours after  Irene was expected to be her most frenzied here.

8:35 . . . Oyster Creek and Elk River tangoed.

8:40 . . . the rarely-seen-here Liberty II,

8:41 . . . a Moran trio of Gramma Lee T, Turecamo Girls, and James Turecamo,

8:49 . . .HMS Liberty pushes Chabria Sea westbound toward IMTT,

9:07 . . . Susan E. Witte prepares to take the stern of Energy 6508, pushed by Michigan Service,

9:09  . .  NRC Guardian . . .  coming out of the protected waters was the trend this morning.  Meanwhile, I had another item of business here . . . check on my

favorite livestock, the goats of the Narrows.  I hoped Irene’d

not made them seagoats.  I breathed easy when I saw them . . . working to keep the Narrows free

of poison ivy and other itchiness.

But the bad news in the sixth boro is  . .  that R. H. Tugs, one of my favorite eateries, has been sold.  SOLD!  Gone!  What follows?  !@!@??

All fotos this morning by Will Van Dorp.

Viking and the nose

Captain D  (whom I saw first about two years ago) and Miss Gill

Quantico Creek (I almost made the launch) and Bohemia  (also from about two years ago)

Kristin Poling and Crystal Cutler

Maryland

Miss Gill . . .  aka “mace gale”

Bohemia (I crossed the river there two weeks ago on Rte 213) and Viking

Kimberly Poling, who had a different paint scheme here two and four years ago.  I like the new colors more than the previous.

Eagle Service

Dace Reinauer (and its previous profiles and livery)

All fotos in the past two weeks by Will Van Dorp.

If you need to feel chilled, look in on Issuma, lover of cold sailing.

As I searched for something else in the 2007-08 foto galleries, I found shots of vessels long gone . . . .  I know where specifically some are and see them regularly bearing a new name, a couple here  in general I know where they are although I’m unable to picture them,  yet others  . . .  I have nary a clue.  One or two here I spotted maybe only once.  Today seems an opportune time to bring these to light.  If anyone has recent pics, please send them.  Unless otherwise stated, all fotos were taken in the sixth boro, which itself has changed in  . . .  3 or 4 years . . . or more accurately–land, people, water–is always in flux.

Like Baltic Sea.

Francis E. Roehrig,

Robert E. McAllister,

Sea Service, 

THE Janice Ann Reinauer, 

Sea Ox aka Inland Sea,

Mostank,

Curtis Reinauer (and Deanno Franklin)

Little Toot (foto taken in Point Pleasant, NJ),

Dean Reinauer, 

June K and Juliet Reinauer,

Francis Turecamo (taken in Waterford, NY),

Eileen McAllister and Responder . . . still with the boom reel,

Barbara McAllister,

and finally, the elusive basil barge . . . .

And if you’re feeling generous and flush today, how about we support the PortSide Summer Youth Employment program . . .?  Click the icon upper left for info.

Except for the basil barge, all fotos taken a few years back by Will Van Dorp.

In the elusive but deadly department, “ghost bombs” near the VZ bridge???

Imagine a tugboat with a bowsprit, at least some of the time?  See the link at the end.

First from Robert Apuzzo . . .  Crow (1963) in the East River, and

Susan Miller (1981, ex-Uncle Ned) in the Bronx River.  Speaking of the Bronx River, here’s its namesake tug and some info on doings in the Bronx River this summer.  By the way, you saw Bronx nearly lost in the lush bow pudding of Cornell here last September… scroll through a bit.

From John Watson, the newer (Feb 2011) and bigger (630′) orange juice tanker Orange Stararrives escorted by Laura K. Moran.

Same shot, bigger context.

A distant sound like a train whistle Saturday morning . . .  that was the aforementioned Cornell.

A school of Vane boats (l. to r. Elk River, Pataspsco, and Quantico Creek)  get their stern-parts bathed by the oracle waters Gowanus Canal.

Eagle Service, fairly fresh off the Great Lakes, heads into KVK about a week ago.

Like Eagle Service, Greenland Sea was originally built as a Bollinger-built Candies boat.  . .  Grant Candies (November 1996) and  Doc Candies (December 1990).

Another Hornbeck boat, Freedom Service (1983) heads into the Buttermilk from the East River.

Buchanan 12 (1972) heads into the East River.    See her light here.

Thanks to Robert and John for sharing their fotos.

Unrelated:  Here are some fotos from the Seattle Maritime Festival, tug race and more, from yesterday.  Wish I’d been able to go.   Here and here are some Seattle water fotos I took last summer.  For updates on Coot, the tug in W. O. Decker colors, click here. Scrolling through you’ll also find some great tugboat names as well as the hull–high and dry–of a supertug under construction.

Also unrelated but  . .  a two-minute video honoring WW2 vets.  Watch it all, please.

Anna Frater is the bowspritted tugboat;  click here to see it.    It’s not the first such tug to appear here:  check out this tugantine from 2008.

(Doubleclick enlarges most fotos.) When I visited Village Community Boathouse (VCB) late last winter, we discussed a “photographic rowfari” to the Gowanus, come spring.  Spring has arrived, and so . .. yesterday, John Magnus and JML

constructed by volunteers at VCB were lowered into the north River at Pier 40 and

after some adjustments, the hearty crews rowed toward their destination,

making a stop to greet the folks at Red Hook Boaters near Valentino Pier before

heading farther south.

Once past Erie Basin, we turned into Gowanus Bay, past the Loujiane, the grain elevators,

part of the Vane fleet, docked where the previous tenant’s name still graces the wall,

past the experiment vessel Jerko

with its famous tender Mare Liberum. . . floating above all manner of artifacts there for the collecting . . . farther up the canal untl we reached it . . .

huge bubbles?  Reverse maelstrom?  Vortex reversus?  Belch of sludge lusus naturae?  Maybe it’s just evidence that the flushing canal actually functions in spite of its sisyphean task of cleaning what has been rendered most foul?

In spite of Gowanus‘ uberpolluted condition, an ecosystem exists, with feral cats,

mussels,

an intrepid canoe club,

predators and prey.

Is the intention of this sign (above a novel use of tires) to invite us back?  See the VCB version of events here.

Questions I have are . . .  how soon might the Canal’s Superfund status show results?

Unrelated but possibly good news related to South Street Seaport   . . .  we all who pledged may have the pleasure of sending in our Benjamin Franklins . . . .

And a heads-up for next week . . .  Hudson River Pageant, involving some of Village Community Boathouse’s rowing gigs!

Related and very important . .  . if you’re in a human-powered and relatively small vessel, be aware that you are difficult to spot for huge cargo vessels of all kinds that travel fast and have limited maneuverability.  Read Towmasters post here

I must be the last to join in tribute to our mothers, since that day was yesterday.  An important gift of mothers is that they feed us . . . milk and bread and  . . . broccoli.  But it’s true that we do not live by milk and bread  . . .  alone.  Everyone has stories about nurturing experiences mothers and everyone and everything else that provides nurture.  And  yesterday was that kind of day . . . a day to observe mother nature and feel –well–fostered.  Harbor II (1947, ex-Chas R Moore) in Erie Basin  before 7 a.m.

Anthony Miller, assisting Caribbean Princess as a goby would a grouper.

The Princess as well as  (near to far) Sassafras with DoubleSkin 303, Timothy L Reinauer with RTC 84, and Freedom Service with Energy 11105.

Small fishing boat with Sunny Williams with Anette  Theresa.

Small fishing boat with the KV buoy.

Cape Tilapia Talara,  named for a point in northern Peru, and a boom boat, preparing the tanker for departure.  .

Resolute, beginning Cape Talara‘s rotation (U-turn) in the KVK so that it’s reoriented from west to east . .  .

and nearing the end-of-rotation.

Oh the stories, all based on observation of mother water . . .  who with mother earth constitute mother nature.  Birk Thomas (center) telling some of those stories . . .  within the context of the sit-down portion of a Jane Jacobs walk  (ours in almost dead last scrolling thru).

Thanks, mom and moms.  All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Meanwhile click here for SaveourSeaport and here for a tugster-take on the situation before MayDay: Ex-Port 2 and Ex-Port 1.  Please write letters and (if you’re near here and free) try to get to the meeting.  alas . .  I’ll be at work.

All fotos today come compliments of John van der Doe, who resides north of the border.     John’s set, all taken over a three-hour period this past Saturday (4/9)  seem to flow naturally from the Hornbeck post I did almost two years ago here.  If you’re a regular reader, you’ll recognize that Eagle Service was the tug involved in a bump in Hell Gate less than a month ago.  John’s  fotos answer some questions:  where are vessels of all sorts coming from as they traverse the sixth boro?  Where are they headed?  Any guesses where John took these fotos?

Here’s a clue.

He caught them upbound on the Welland Canal; upbound meaning heading from Lake Ontario to Lake Erie.

And if that weren’t enough, midafternoon brought on

Huron Service.

Makes me wonder about things like final destination,  length of hitch here, other economics of  such a trip . . . .

Thanks very much to John van der Doe for these fotos.

Remember, if you’re in NYC and free tonight . . .  Working Harbor Committee is presenting movie and panel:  Women at Sea.  If I didn’t have to work, I’d be there.

I’ve posted a set of fotos about this vessel here before, but still been unable to learn anything about it.  It lies where Westchester Creek (In fact, click on the link and you’ll see another foto of the same grounded vessel!)  flows into the East River west of the Whitestone Bridge.  And not that I haven’t looked, though it’s clear that my searches have focused on the wrong places.  Uncorroborated stories are these:  it was coming from South America, the owner abandoned a plan to turn Christina or Cristina into a floating restaurant . .  possibly in Philadelphia, it was dropped off there to mark a shoal.  A search of NYTimes archives from 1920 until 1980 turns up nothing about either this grounded vessel or

this one, not far away.

When spring actually gets here and work slows down, I plan to put a human powered vessel in this area and look around more.  Thanks to Robert Apuzzo for these fotos.

But . . . as often happens, I found some interesting info on other groundings in the harbor in the past 80 years . . . yes, one happened in the East River less than two weeks ago, as of this writing.  Some of these include:

May 1927  dreadnought Colorado Diamond Reef*  (between Governors Island and southeastern tip of the  Battery)

Dec 1936  freighter Malang Roosevelt Island, then Welfare Island

Aug 1951 battleship Wisconsin (actually North River near NJ across from 79th Street)

Oct 1955 battleship Wisconsin Diamond Reef

Feb 1970  tanker Desert Princess (ex-Hoegh Grace, 664′)   Mill Rock

Dec 1972  tanker Vitta (659′)  south of Ward Island, spilling 150 tons of oil

April 1979  tanker Algol East River off 10th Street.  If you have a NYTimes subscription, you can read the article here, telling that six Moran tugs came to the assistance of Algol in sprite of the strike then happening.

Apr 28 2005, a gasoline barge struck Diamond Reef, with some spillage.  See here.

Meanwhile, if I don’t find some info on that top wreck, I’ll succumb to all the imagined histories, maybe even embroider them a bit, and call it fiction.  Not so bad, eh?

Unrelated:  Check out this site dedicated to the waterway leading from Rotterdam to the North Sea . . .Maasmond (mouth of the Maas River) Maritime.

A new reader recently asked why “ships” he saw on the sixth boro showed up on AIS as tugs.  An excellent question, and not the first time I’ve heard it. . . .  Read the first sentence of the wikipedia definition of “ship.”  By that definition, how many ships do you see here?  (Doubleclick enlarges most.)

Answer is only one, the orange one.  The nearer vessel is a barge.  The major difference is that a barge lacks its own means of propulsion:  no engine, props, or sails.  Barges get moved by a tugboat that may tow, push, or strap-on alongside aka on the wire, in push gear, or on the hip, respectively.

And here?

Answer is  . . .  one, Maersk Elizabeth.

And here?

Answer is . . . none.  Some “tugboats” lack the equipment to tow;  they have no winch.  Instead, tugs like Laurie Ann Reinauer connect by the bow into a notch designed in the after portion of the barge.  Massive pins then lock into structures on the barge inside the notch.

Here?

One ship, Princimar Strength, also shown below with two barges and two tugs alongside.

Here, no ships, just barge RTC 150 pushed by Meredith C. Reinauer.

A large tug . . . Atlantic Salvor and a ship.

Two tugs receding and barge RTC 83 approaching pushed by an unseen Lucy Reinauer.

And finally . . . no ships here, just two barges (Energy 13502 and Charleston) with a tug Eagle Service in between.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who could use a bit of help with complexity.

Featured many times on this blog:  McAllister Responder (ex-Exxon Empire State, Empire State) launched in 1967 in Jacksonville.  Note the deckhand’s communication.  If my info is correct, then ghosts

live there today.  Here’s a haunting timeline and set of b/w fotos.  That’s tanker Lian An Hu in the background.

Weeks tug Robert (ex-Emily S, 1982) stands by Crane Barge 532 in midstream off the Financial District, awaiting more “erosion mats.”

Austin Reinauer (1978, ex-Mobil 5, Morania No. 1, Tamarac) heads across from the KVK toward Erie Basin.

Jill Reinauer (1967, ex-Ranger)  southbound past Ellis Island, the place the Lenape knew as Kioshk . . . or Gull Island.

Peter F. Gellatly (delivered just over a year ago)  heads in the same direction as Jill Reinauer.

Eagle Service (ex-Grant Candies, 1996) and crabber Alexa J off the wintry dunes of  “Konstapel’s Hoeck.”

Jakobson-built, 1967   Ruby M, ex-Texaco Fire Chief, pushing fuel barge Fire Island.  Now if you didn’t know this to be the name of local geography, wouldn’t such a name as “fire island” make you nervous?

Lincoln Sea, used to be blue, anchored off Red Hook a few days ago.  Off to the left, Moran barge Massachusetts anchors.

All 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.

Seth Tane American Painting

My other blogs

My Babylonian Captivity

Reflections of an American hostage in Iraq, 20 years later.

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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