You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Don Jon Marine’ category.

I’ve seen unusual tows before 2019, but it was only then that I started counting.  I’ll add links to previous unusual tows at the end of this post.  So where’s the tow?

It’s (l to r) Mary Alice, Laura Maersk, and Emily Ann, all behind Atlantic Enterprise.

The story is simple if unfortunate . . .

You’ve no doubt experienced the same with your car, or boat . . .  Something happens, and you need a tow.  This one started a few days ago, as you can read in the link in the previous sentence.  Here‘s more detail.

Fire Fighter II met the tow as it approached the Narrows.

Mary Alice had starboard,

Emily Ann had port.

The trio delivered the container ship to Stapleton.  Moran tugs took the ship from there to the container docks.

Today’s weather was fabulous and seas flat, not so a few days ago.

All photos, WVD.

Some previous unusual tows might be these of Wavertree, Peking, Lehigh Valley 79, Dorothy McAllister and mystery ship, the future OHP, Thorco Hilde, SS Columbia, and I could go on . . .  Maybe I need to add some appropriate tags.

 

x

x

On we go . . .  Alexandra does not appear frequently here. If my count is correct, this is only the third time since and including 2008 that this 120′ x 34′ 4000hp boat’s been posted here.  She’s currently working on a dredging project near Sandy Hook.

An action shot here of Mister T doing what the 82′ x 24′ 2400hp Mister T does.

Pegasus has to be among the cleanest looking boats, a fact accentuated here by the rusty stains on the hull of the tanker beyond her.  Dimensions . . . 75′ x 26′ x 1900hp.

The Browns . . . James  and Joyce, move this car float across between Owls Head and Greenville.  The absence of leaves on the trees shows how long ago I took this and most of these photos.  They are 74′ x 30′ x 1000 and 78′ x 26′ 2400, respectively.

Patrice, 105′ x 34′ 4500, has been here almost 10 years.

Nathan G, 73 x 24′ 1200′, moves a scow  westbound on the KVK.  I’d have guessed her larger than that.

Paul Andrew does the paper barge.  She’s 64′ x 23′ and 1200hp.

And finally, JRT sees one ship out and positions herself for the next job.

Here was my first photo of the 6000hp 89′ x 38′ tugboat back in late 2015.  The photo reminds me I should use the fisheye more often.

All photos, WVD.

Stephen Reinauer westbound as the sun heads in the same direction.

Mary Turecamo assists an MOL ship into port.

Ava M pushes toward the pilot’s door on the side of another container ship.

James D heads to the next job amid two container ships in the approaches.

Margaret throttles up alongside.

James William travels toward Howland Hook.

James E. heads, no doubt, for the car float with rail cars awaiting it.

Stephen Dann heads in to get some fuel.

Emily Ann travels light toward the Upper Bay.

All photos from a socially-distanced, physically-isolated, seasonally-adjusted, pent-up energized, freely-masked, and emotionally-stale  WVD.

 

The Oswego River is the second largest river flowing into Lake Ontario, but it feels in places like a stream.  I don’t have to tell you what the largest river into Ontario is, I hope.

If you study the east bank, lots of traces of the original 1828 Oswego Canal, a verdant mudbank and even stonework like this for a former lock.

A detail to look for on the west side of the river just north of Minetto is the beer cave, where Brosemer Brewery used to cool their products in the age before refrigeration.

I’ve never been inside, but here’s a photo of the interior.

As evidence of the commercial traffic still plying the system, here’s a New Jersey-based tugboat on its way to Lake Erie.

In Oswego there’s a flight of three locks in just over a mile that will lower us 46′.  The canal runs along the left side of this photo; notice the passenger vessel about to exit the top end of the lock O-7, climbing toward Minetto.  Along the right side of the photo, i.e., the west side of the river, water has to tumble that same distance, a fact that allows hydropower generation and a thriving sport fishing industry, both in the river, out on Lake Ontario, and elsewhere in the locality.

In summer, Oswego enjoys its connection to the big lake.  What’s a recreation area today was an industrial only area back over 150 years ago.

Industry still exists.  Tourism to the right, and cement to the left.

Count the three tugboats in this photo from 2014.  From near to far, Margot is pushing some oversize electrical equipment from Schenectady to Massena; the blue Cheyenne is heading to Lake Erie via the Welland Canal to retrieve new barges from a shipyard, and Wilf Seymour, the tugboat on in the distance pushing the large barge* that has delivered aluminum ingots via the Saint Lawrence River for use at the  Novelis plant just north of Oswego.  Interesting as evidence of the commercial value of the Canal, Margot is based in Troy NY, Cheyenne then in Hillside NJ**, and Wilf Seymour in Burlington ON.

***That barge transports the equivalent of 920 20-ton trucks, and Cheyenne is now based in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.

A different day brings different commercial boats here;  I’m not sure where the speedboat is based, but the two boats on the wall are from New Jersey and Rhode Island, and

Seaway Maid, from Clayton, on the St. Lawrence.

From right to left here, the white building is the H. Lee White Maritime Museum and the tug in the front of it it LT-5, a veteran of the Normandy invasion. Here‘s more on that tug, aka Nash.   Moving to the left, it’s 85′ schooner Ontario, and Niña and Pinta of the Columbus Foundation.  I wrote here about touring the Niña and Pinta on the Hudson back in 2012.  Ask me about schooner Ontario and I’ll tell you a sad tale.

This Canadian sailboat enters the system here, bound for the Caribbean.

Proximity to Canada made Oswego, the US first port on the Great Lakes, an important station in the Underground Railroad.

If you’re interested in some hard-to-explain details of Oswego harbor, you’ll love browsing through all the historical photos here.  Oswego became an official US port of entry in 1799, and

an active shipbuilding center. Vandalia, 91′ x 20′ and built here in 1841, was the first propeller steamship on the Great Lakes.

The brig Oneida was built here as well, less than a decade before the War of 1812.

Working backward here, this place was wrangled over for a long time, and a plaque in front of the star-shaped fort on a bluff east of the mouth of the river is …

my all-time favorite historical marker:  “Built, captured & destroyed, rebuilt, destroyed . . .”  Needing more historical recognition is Dr. Mary E. Walker, the only woman as yet to receive a Medal of Honor, and do read that link.

Notable in the recent era, Fort Ontario served as a refugee settlement shelter called “safe haven” in 1944-45.  In summer 2019 refugees returned to Oswego to commemorate the 75th anniversary of their sojourn there.

So here were are;  we’ve virtually transited one possible course on the Erie Canal, traveled about 225 miles.  We were raised 405′ and then lowered back down about 175′,  doing some rounding of numbers. I hope you’ve enjoyed the ride, learned something about this waterway, and gotten some good photos.  As to food and drink on board, sorry . . . that’s not my department.

Let’s head due west about 20 miles,  into Lake Ontario.  Here I’m looking south toward Sodus Point, where I learned to swim in the early 1960s.  It’s so calm I could  “stand-up canoe-paddle” all the way to the lighthouse.  Six months later this SE corner of Ontario had 20′ to 30′ waves, according to NOAA.    This area of the lake, called the Rochester Basin, is 802′ deep at its greatest depth.  NOAA held meetings in summer 2019 for public comment on a proposed designation of the area as a National Marine Sanctuary.

If we continue on this course about 140 miles, we’ll be at Port Weller, ON, the entrance to another Canal, the Welland.  But unless you sign me on for that  trip, I’ll be leaving you here.

Until tomorrow with something different.  Meanwhile, the virtual boat crew needs to refuel with virtual fuel, do virtual maintenance on virtual hardware, etc . . . and we’ll begin another transit through different portions of the canal on May first. Let’s NOT make that may day, which has a whole set of negative connotations I’d rather avoid. Seats are still available for good prices, all, of course, virtual.

Meanwhile, if you plan to do a real transit of the canal –read this note about the 2020 season opening!!–and need crew with local knowledge, get in touch.  I can tie knots, throw lines, and spin yarns.  And if you want to make real evaluative comments of our virtual trip–e.g., errors, omissions, additions…–I’d love to read them.  Comment here or to my email.

 

Seeing a waterway shrunk by the land forms around it like this, I find it miraculous that we can travel it from the ocean to the Great Lakes, but some of you, I know, might be starting to feel claustrophobic.

The drone photo below is taken in Little Falls looking back east toward the the Herkimer home and beyond that the Noses.  As before, you notice three modes of transport paralleling each other.  In the left half of the photo, between the railroad and the state road, you’ll notice remnants of John Pierce Stone Works and the quarry above it.  John Pierce had a number of quarries and a Manhattan contracting company.  The road on the right leads to the NYS Thruway.

Bringing the camera down from the drone to human height and swiveling 180 degrees, we look west at the daunting lock E-17 to the left and the Mohawk River to the right heading around Moss Island.  If we followed the river, we would soon be blocked by a falls. It’s called “little” because the drop is not as big as Cohoes Falls, seen earlier near the Flight in Waterford.  Yet, it was big enough that the Western Inland Lock Navigation Company built a short canal around it in the 1790s.

Once inside the lock and looking back, it’s fun the watch the guillotine door descend, as the counterweight, connected by a huge chain, rise. It’s the only lock in the system with such a lower “gate.”  Any guesses on the weights of gate and counterweight?  Answer will be given at the end of this post.

Moss Island often has climbers, as viewed here from the boat,

and even if you’re not a technical climber, you can walk a path up the back side of the cliff to get photos of traffic eastbound  entering and

departing westbound from the top of the lock.

This 1910 photo shows the cliff, the the current lock under construction.  To the right, the location of the previous locks.

Little Falls was the scene of a horrendous train derailment in 1940, attributed to “speed kills.”  A plaque on the north side of the river commemorates this tragedy.

The charming village on the north side of the gorge has seen the population drop from 13,000 in 1920 to fewer than 5000 today.  Now, as in the past, the town is known for cheese.  In fact, the large house that you might see on the ridge high above the town, the Burrell Mansion, was built by David H. Burrell, who invented many devices used by the dairy and cheese industry.

If the building below looks like a freight house, it was built as one.  It’s currently one of eight that have survived of a total of 28 built for cargo transfer in the Barge Canal era.  Currently, Canal Harbor and Rotary Park, west of the village,  has amenities for boaters.  Across the river, some modern industrial buildings belong to Feldmeier Equipment, a world leader in the manufacture of tanks for the dairy, pharmaceutical, and brewing industries.  They grew out of the Burrell’s legacy, and are one of Little Falls largest employers.

Lots of “loopers” transit the Canal, but here’s one of the more unusual craft I’ve seen not so much for what it is than for what it was doing . . . , a vet doing the loop in a kayak as post-Iraq therapy.  Note the yellow decal topside just behind the solar panels behind his cockpit.

Along the way to lock E-18 we follow Jacksonburg Mountain.  First peoples called it Mt. Okwari, or “bear mountain.”  John Jost Herkimer, father of Nicholas,  settled here in 1722, with permission from the local Mohawks, who called him Okwari, because of his imposing size and strength.

Approaching lock E-18, we can clearly see the Mohawk River heading to the right, and the lock leading into another land cut.  The “island” created in between is called Plantation Island Refuge Area.  Clearly, it’s working well as a refuge, since last year as we sailed by, a complacent coyote watched us pass from the safety of his bank.

At the top end of E-18, you can see the green light, signalling that Lil Diamond II was free to enter. Lil Diamond II is one of several boats operated by Erie Canal Cruises, whose dock is several miles west of E-18.

The taller building at the far end of the lock is a power house, i.e., hydro-power generating station.  It’s one of 26 built into the Barge Canal, only a few of which like this one are intact.  Remember that the Barge Canal with its DC electrical equipment predates the grid, so each lock needed its own power generation.

Visible from the river is the 1753 limestone structure referred to as the Fort Herkimer Church.  A walk around the church allows you to see the gun ports in the thick limestone walls.

Herkimer is the base of operations for Erie Canal Cruises.  North of town, there’s a quarry where the public can dig for “Herkimer diamonds,” aka Little Falls diamonds.

Illion is the home of Remington, where an enterprise begun by Eliphalet Remington continues to operate, manufacturing guns, typewriters, bicycles, and sewing machines throughout its 200+ year existence.

Up ahead is lock E-19, where

train traffic finally crosses from the north to the south side of the Canal.

Surprise boat encounters can happen anywhere along the Canal.  One of my bigger surprises was rising to the top of lock E-19 a few years ago and seeing Draken Harald Hårfagre waiting for the lock to clear before heading eastbound.  Vikings!  Eastbound in central New York!  Who knew?    Other unusual vessels that have transited include Hōkūleʻa, Ra, and the presidential yacht Sequoia.  A short account of the latter doing the loop can be read here;  I hope to post about that more in the future. And there must be a thousand more stories I don’t know, would love to hear.

A few miles south of lock E-19 is Balloon Farm, home of  Carl E. and Mary Meyers.  Carl was an inventor of lighter-than-air aircraft, and Mary—also known as Carlotta the Aeronaut—was  an early American aviator who set many flight records before she retired in 1891.

Now the Canal is entirely in a laser-straight  “land cut,” the Mohawk having too many meanders.

This photo is looking NW.  Note the diagonal piece of land rising from the lower right corner.  The waterway above that is the Canal, with the NYS Thruway above that. The wide body of water from the left corner is the Utica Canal Terminal, aka Inner Harbor and the Mohawk meandering off left center.   Getting back to the diagonal piece of land . . . there’s a lattice structure with a red sign atop spelling out UTICA.  This sign seems important because Utica is barely visible from the Canal.  Where the 19th century canal transited Utica, today you find Erie Boulevard.

Just beyond the Utica sign, there’s a lock that leads into Utica Canal Terminal.

Well, the icon may soon be gone, but

it cleverly mimics this sign a few miles to the south atop the Matt Brewing Company, touting the product that made Utica famous, and the beer that was pouring from taps minutes after Prohibition ended on December 5, 1933.  A miracle? 

At the intersection of the Erie and the Chenango Canals, and connected by rail, Utica was well-placed for commerce. Chenango was one of almost a dozen “feeder” canals, referred to as lateral canals, connecting to the Enlarged Erie.

A century ago, 66% of Utica’s workforce were employed in the textile and clothing trade, an industry soon to head south. An interesting profile of the city’s bust and rebirth can be gleaned from this paper.

The sign below in the lobby of the revived Hotel Utica, opened in 1912,  hints at the prestige the city once had.

Stanley Theater is another icon of Utica’s past.  Not much farther south of Genesee Street is the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute, with an impressive collection, founded by three generations of the family of Alfred H. Munson.

Before we miss the boat heading west, a few seconds for two more quick details about Utica.  First, you must try Utica greens, one of many food specialties along the Canal.  And second, John Butterfield, a former mayor of the city, is credited with founding both American Express and Wells Fargo.

A few miles west of Aqua Vino on the Canal, we get to lock E-20, here looking east toward the lock off the stern of this 1920s ice breaking tug.

And here’s the info on lock E-17, taken from a plaque on the lock itself.

 

 

 

Eric McAllister assisted Cielo di Roma, now Baki Akar, Turkish-flagged out of her IMTT berth.

Mako, in the dawnlight, which I see through an urban window these days, waits alongside her barge.

Bow Riad meets Genesis Victory and

sails west.  She was Huron Service until some point in 2013.

I recall I got this photo as Atlantic Salvor was returning from the Caribbean, although I can’t remember where in the Caribbean.

James Turecamo was doing ship assist down here just five years ago. Here, James rotates Fidias along with Gramma Lee T Moran.

Charles A . . . and I honestly can’t recall where that was, given the background.

Here’s two

of an interestingly marked Jane McAllister, likely headed downeast somewhere.

And let’s end with three of

Simone, more here,

whom I hadn’t seen before and haven’t since.  As of very shortly, she’s on her way to Guantanamo.

All photos taken in April 2015 by WVD.  Stay healthy, keep your distance, and avoid expelled missiles with corona warheads.

This series goes way back to 2007, when I erroneously thought a song existed called “Paris in springtime.”  My deciding it must be a faux memory did not prevent me from doing a bunch more posts, with variations like “pairs in winter,” like today’s posts.  It still is winter.  And there is a movie with a somewhat similar name;  a fun trailer can be seen here.

Let’s start with Sarah Ann and Thomas E. pairing up to get a crane off to Sims.

 

Ellen and Ava team up to see a small container vessel into the kills.

 

Meagan Ann and Emily Ann each bring a scow for the filling, likely with scrap?

 

And for a variation, a mixed triad of Margaret, Alex, and Ava return from assists.

All photos, WVD, who wishes you happy springish late winter and successful social separations.

 

 

How’s this as an unusual perspective, East Coast coming through the Narrows and under the VZ Bridge, barely visible at top of photo,  with a sugar barge, not sure which one. I believe that’s a Sandy Hook antenna and West Bank Romer Shoal Light off starboard.

Kimberly Poling heads into the Kills past Robbins Reef Light.

James William has been moving garbage containers these days.

The intriguingly named Iron Wolf passes the Brooklyn Army Terminal.

Mary Alice moves Columbia New York.

A few hundred yards ahead of Iron Wolf is Sea Fox.

Andrea departs the Kills to pick up a fuel barge.

Mary H returns from a run with barge Patriot.

And finally, Fox3 heads southbound;  that’s the southern tip of Manhattan behind her.

All photos, WVD.

Radar helps when you can’t see in the fog, but

even on a clear day, you can’t see the crew operating this 2013 2000 hp tugboat, or its history . . . how it got to become a fixture in the sixth boro.

Ditto this 1994 tug, operating with 3000 hp.  Here Kimberly Poling is docked, and the outside viewer knows no reason why.

Brian Nicholas was launched under a different name before Nixon was elected.  If only one could be privy to all the conversations and dramas even happened aboard.

Mister Jim was based for 30 years in the Gulf of Mexico, although without looking at her logbooks, who knows where all she worked.

Ellen McAllister has the distinction in this post of having been launched before Nixon was elected also AND worked both sides of the Atlantic, and I would suspect she’s appeared on this blog more times than any other of the machines here, but still . . . even I, what do I know about her quirks and feats?

Helen Laraway, unless I tell you, would you know that she was working before Kennedy was elected POTUS?  And with rehabbing and repowering . . . she’s as good as new, I believe, and working hard for a 63-year-old.

James E. Brown is the youngster of this post, built in a fishing village originally called Coq d’Inde, now anglicized.

Finally, back in the fog . . .  It’s Stephanie Dann, a product of the Carter era.  As to these dates and use of POTUSes as time references, it’s not political, but you’ll see my point here in tomorrow’s post.

And yes, all photos and info here by Will Van Dorp.

 

Here are previous installments, the last of which I did in 2011.

The idea here is just photos.  For identification, there’s text on the images and in the tags.

Morning light enhances the mostly thorough coating of steel with bright paint colors.

 

 

 

 

Next stop Belford for Midnight.  Too bad I don’t live closer to the Seafood Co-op there.

All photos by Will Van Dorp . . .

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,382 other followers

If looking for specific "word" in archives, search here.
Questions, comments, photos? Email Tugster

Graves of Arthur Kill

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

Seth Tane American Painting

Read my Iraq Hostage memoir online.

My Babylonian Captivity

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

Archives

July 2020
M T W T F S S
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031