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Even though she glowers at me whenever I say it, the six-eyed bowsprite IS perspicacious. As she hops from cliff to cliff and down along the ledges near water level, she misses no detail. She sent me these fotos to share. What is the orange sheet dangling from the yellow frame suspended from the 532 crane?
A nutrient-rich bedding for oysters?
Part of a future underwater moving sidewalk?
A riverbed loom for a seaweed weaving project?
Habitat for sturgeon and plesiosaurs?
A diversion intended to lure bowsprite down from her cliffs?
Preparations for next year’s Red Bull Air Races?
An attempt to recover aliens and their secrets from the wreck site of an OVNI?
Ichthyosaur survival training drill?
blamed on credited to bowsprite, whose narative goes like this:
“09h20 Virginia and Elizabeth go upriver to bring mats and crew to the crane Weeks 532. The engines roar, smoke comes out, the spuds are dropped, the crane lifts the yellow loom-thing and splashes it into the drink. A lunchtime crowd gathers, asking each other what’s going on. They say ‘I think they’re dredging.’ Or ‘I don’t know. Been here a few days.’ Or ‘What’s your guess? They talk, they speculate.
Back on the barge, The loom comes up sans the orange mat. Men with stepladders go around and weave on the next mat. Spuds go up, engines roar, smoke again, winches drag in the white buoy, and the whole barge setup moves farther into the middle of the river. Later another mat is laid down just a bit east of the last one.”
And the answer to Whatzit: the truth is out there, or in here.
(Doubleclick enlarges fotos.) With a favorable weather window, tomorrow nightfall may find Wanderbird out the Narrows and at sea, bound for Puerto Rico. But midday today, she was
anchored off Piermont, off the old Camp Shanks. More Camp Shanks later.
At daybreak Paolo and Pitsik bade farewell to Atlantic Basin as
steamed upriver past a very sleepy version of the so-called “city that never sleeps.” This morning I had doubts about that moniker. And with an icy blast coming out of the north, sleeping in would not be such a terrible option, but
for me, the ride up to Piermont–in a wheelhouse listening to yarns from Culebra to Greenland and smelling soup savors wafted up from the galley–it was sweet.
Thanks to Captains Rick and Karen for the chance to steam upriver a few hours. Here’s their site.
For folks who want numbers: Wanderbird‘s Industrie engine generates 510 hp, consuming a gallon a mile while cruising at 500 rpm and spinning a 8″ shaft and a 62″ four-bladed prop.
A great picture book about the hundreds of very similar North Sea trawlers, check out Arie van der Veer’s Van Zijtrawler naar Hektrawler (From Side Trawler to Stern Trawler). It has hundreds of fotos. An English-language article with pics on this category of trawler can be seen here.
Check out this blog from Labrador for more info on the Canadian husky above named Pitsik (scroll to August 18, 2010) AND the schooner Issuma (scroll to August 10), currently on Lake Ontario and written about here last month. Here’s another Issuma post. For pics of Wanderbird in the Caribbean, check out these by David Blitzer, whom I met on the trip to Piermont. See info on David’s show at 350 Bleeker Street here.
Fair winds, Wanderbird.
Note: Be sure to read the comments in part a, esp the very long and personal one by Bill W.
Two of the vessels huddled there for awhile (probably longer than their actual period of service) included sister vessels USS Wakefield (AP-21) aka SS Manhattan and USS Mount Vernon (AP-22) aka SS Washington. Both were older sisters (by two decades) of United States Lines’ SS United States.
Many thanks to Harold Tartell and Joseph Herbert for these enlightening fotos. And thanks for the comments some of you have sent in; I’m eager to hear more and see more fotos, possibly of these vessels being moved downriver to the American scrapyards. Read this article from Sea Classics on the impetus to build and then maintain these vessels.
Let me illustrate the point I made in Something Different 3. Suppose you were reading a river chart and saw a place labeled “Burden Point.” And suppose it looked like this. It suspect it’d make you wonder about the origin of the name, imagining that some weary wretch struggled unsuccessfully to make something happen on that point of land on the wrong side of the tracks …
Burden Point is a real place though, and those tracks support a loco Amtrak racing by many times daily. Info on the Burden follows.
Another place freighted with evocative name and debris is Port Ivory, just slightly to the west of this foto. Makes you wonder, and I think that’s good.
The charts mark Pot Cove as near near here. I had to make the fotos somewhat interesting. By the way, that’s tug Quenames sliding a barge under the rail bridge near Hell Gate, and beyond her starboard is the Bronx, DEP sludge central, possibly sludge tanker North River.
And one last rather uninteresting foto . . . Bushwick Inlet poking into Greenpoint, Brooklyn from the East River. Know how this place is connected with Burden Dock?
Bushwick Inlet was once the home to Continental Iron Works, where the ironclad Monitor was built. And the iron used in the plate, well, that’s the Burden connection. Burden Dock is named for Henry Burden, one of the Hudson valley’s most prolific inventors with iron, a name I didn’t know until I started digging prompted by the weary dock name I spotted last weekend. Burden made superb train wheels and horse shoes for the Union army as well as iron plate–shipped downriver from his iron works in Troy–for the construction of Monitor. The hills inland from Burden Dock supplied ore for all Burden’s projects. See p. 13 of this issue and p. 9 of this one for references to Burden’s Hudson River Ore and Iron . . . although that whole magazine has enthralling articles in it. Kudos to the Columbia County Historical society. Interesting also is that Hudson River ore was superseded by that from the Mesabi Range.
Now without that name and a little wild debris–a shack on a barge or dock transforming itself back into wilderness–I’d not have felt invited into this past. I’m grateful for the names, at least. Port Ivory has this story, better smelling though less fabulous than you might have imagined. Pot Cove was once a native village. Upriver are Anthony’s Nose (maybe named for the proboscis of Peter Stuyvesant’s aid Anthony Corlaer and Kidd’s Cave. Mr Stuyvesant himself enjoyed a well-endowed proboscis.
Tangentially related: The sixth boro is dotted with an archipelago of islands from the famous Manhattan to the obscure Hart, where Melinda Hunt has brought the dead to life.
Spot on related: Check out hudson river explorer, Dennis Willard’s blog.
Finally: A tip of the hat to Rick of Old Salt Blog for his compendium of haunted ships . . . for tomorrow. I’m off gallivanting up the Hudson Valley for Halloween.
A general thanks for people sending me fotos. Blogging allows some stupendous collaborations.
Thanks to M. McMorrow for sending. Notice the cruise ship, the Intrepid, several sizes and types of tugs, as well as the Concorde! Unfortunately, the blimp–on its way to the tennis tournament–had just escaped from the foto.
Thanks to Stephen Sisler. Any guesses who’s atop the wheelhouse?
Do you recall that Cornell struggled in a pushing contest with The Bronx? (That’s “struggled” to restrain all forward movement.) The next two fotos come compliments of Jim Levantino, who saw that struggle from The Bronx having the pleasure of getting buried
deep within Cornell‘s … er … whiskers.
Here’s my foto of the very same moment, as recorded from high atop the house.
Thanks to Elizabeth … it’s a blogger fotografing within the confines of Troy’s Federal Lock.
And going back to late August, thanks to Eric Graybill, crewman on Bold (See 6th foto down.), who sent these fotos of Gazela making
her way, motorsailing
up Delaware Bay. Recognize anyone on deck Gazela? Gazela will be returning through the sixth boro in mid-October on its way to the oysterfest. Keep your eyes peeled; this blogger will await them at the Narrows or –near the “Gate” in the East River.
All fotos as credited. Only the fifth foto by Will Van Dorp.
A week ago Lehigh Valley 79 closed up business at the dock in Brooklyn, keeping a weather eye open but eager to begin its gallivant northward on the hip of Pegasus. Ultimate destination for 79 is the Roundup in Waterford, or as some say … Waterchevy. Waterwärtsilä?
By Friday morning Earl had weakened, veered, and gotten delayed; both captains’ word was “Travel with the tide. Cold Spring would be destination for day 1.”
We steamed past familiar landmarks and
under the Tappan Zee.
By the time we approached the Bear Mountain Bridge, the only accommodation needed was to prepare
the towing lights.
<<I guess this stowaway took that as signal to come up for fresh air .>>
By nightfall, barge and tug were secured in Cold Spring, and despite
gale-force gusts funneling down past Storm King all night, all was well at dawn.
From here, Pegasus returned to the sixth boro, and Lehigh Valley 79 was passed like an enormous baton carried on the nose
The bottom foto comes from Paul Strubeck. All others by Will Van Dorp, who hopes to be at the Roundup soon.
I dedicate this post to Mage, who notices when I neglect the cruise ships that make up part of harbor traffic. All the following fotos were taken Friday and Saturday, September 3 from Pegasus and Lehigh Valley 79 between Red Hook to Cold Spring, about 50 miles upriver from the Battery (aka southernmost tip of Manhattan).
We left Queen Mary 2 behind in Red Hook.
Grande Caribe – an inland cruiser — waited at Chelsea Piers, as
Caribbean Princess docks here at Pier 88, a stroll away from the Empire State Building.
Champion passed us south of the Tappan Zee. Anyone know anything about Champion?
Off Hook Mountain we crossed Glen Cove, who moves all manner of products for people . . . so –by stretch — Glen Cove fits into this post as well.
Commander is a tour boat working out of Haverstraw; here she follows us northward from the Bear Mountain Bridge. To me , this is the most beautiful stretch of the Hudson. The link at the start of this paragraph reveals Commander‘s rich and storied past dating back to World War 1.
A day after we passed her at Chelsea Piers, Grande Caribe leapfrogs past us between West Point and Cold Spring.
Penn No. 4 herds people in solo vessels (SVs?) like a border collie moving sheep or goats or cows.
River Rose is a classy sternwheeler out of Newburgh with
All fotos by Will Van Dorp.
If you must travel this weekend or summer, be safe. And you might consider taking your house with you . . . either the actual house or some some of it. You house needs to get out. It might be tired of the same scenery all the time, or
the same neighbors, lawn, or landscaping.
Your house walls hear you talking about the big city . . . well, it may just want to see it once.
It may have heard you talk of large elegant houses that float . . . like Norwegian Epic, and might desire to catch a momentary even blurry glimpse of such miraculous things.
Your house might seek adventure and stay out all night! See where the wild side leads.
It might crave a sunrise in a most unimagined location.
If so, get in touch with Patty Nolan . . . the tugboat with the figure figure. No, she didn’t get a new bikini for this season, but who cares. She’s one prodigious guide.
More later. I’m away, and so may be our houses, hausmann and hausfrau. Please be safe whatever the reason for your travel . . . be it distraction, catchup, business, work, pleasure. See you soon.
Any resemblance to events or persons or houses is only coincidental. If you saw something like this, it was possibly a mirage.