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I have more Saint Lawrence posts, but with a chrononautical weekend behind us, let me digress and report.  The mood for the first ship was set by the weather;  see what the mist did to my favorite downtown building–70 Pine.  Click here and be treated to a slideshow of views through time of boro Manhattan’s  tall observation cliffs, past present and future.


Looking eastbound up the East River, I saw her waiting, as


first one of her entourage arrived and


and then another.


The term “haze gray” was certainly demonstrated yesterday,


as was the vintage of this Liberty ship headed to sea, for a cruise.




Even the Higgins T-boat in the distance is a whole decade closer to the present–in inception– than Brown, although  yesterday all crowded into 2016.




It was a moving sight,


which I beheld,


only slightly regretting I was not aboard.



All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Here are the previous posts in this series.  This is the SUNY training ship’s return this past week from a “sea term” that began this way on May 10. This first set of photos comes from Roger Munoz, who took them from high above 74th Street.




That’s Roosevelt Island just to her far side, and the Queens and the Bronx farther beyond.


Later that morning, Thomas Steinruck took these during the assist back into the dock




friends and family welcomed TS Empire State VI home.   Now it’s back to classes, study, and tests in this part of the Bronx.



Many thanks to Roger and Thomas for use of these photos.

Fly the Whale, that is.  And you can watch it all from the Barge Bar on the East River.


Click here for a short video showing how to beat traffic . . .


Of course, seaplanes or flying boats are nothing new to the sixth boro.  Click here for a short video of a Dornier Do-X arriving in a tugboat-filled harbor in 1929.  It has no sound, but if you want to hear the details, here’s another longer video.   Keyport NJ’s Aeromarine was operating long distance flights from the sixth boro even earlier.




Watch them come and go






watch from


here.  For seaplane prices, click here.  But it costs nothing to watch, which is the right price for me.


Click here for a previous post on Keyport.

All photos here by Will Van Dorp, who thinks that the photos in this post from February 2015 is an invigorating reminder of winter on a hot day.

Also, yesterday Marie Lorenz competed her journey in a rowboat from Buffalo to the sixth boro, and in true DeWitt Clinton fashion, she celebrated her accomplishment by pouring out some Lake Erie water into New York harbor.  See it and much more here.

Even with sunglasses on, you can see the provenance of this barge Matilde in summer light.  Jeddah was my point of departure for a voyage I took just over 30 years ago . . .  and greatly enjoyed.


Summertime brings folks out to all the geology along the north Brooklyn side of the East river.


And Sunday I finally made it to the Brooklyn Barge, and I’m sorry I waited so long. I went there via the East River Ferry, getting off at India Street and walking around via West and Milton.  I highly recommend the fish tacos and the shrimp tacos.


Here’s where you pick up the food after the magic has been done.


Of course, the Media Boat fleet was out and busy, and


the juxtaposition possibilities are great on a summer weekend.


Imagine the possibilities for a Spencer Tunick installation, partly on the hillock and partly on the scrap metal . . . .   Of course, I’m don’t know if all the stakeholder would agree, so I’ll just imagine those oxidized shapes on the scow and those fleshy forms on the hillock have been painted that way by Mr. Tunick.


What will bring me back to this part of the East River soon–other than the tacos–is this air traffic, dodging


PWCs and ferries.




All photos by Will Van Dorp, whose next post will be “whale watching summertime.”

If you’re looking for summer reading, check out this list.


Time to recapitulate the “go west” journey and post the many photos of tugboats I’ve omitted . . . .

Passing Senesco, we saw Buckley McAllister approaching us;  I photographed the boat as someone there photographed us.  I’m not sure which Reinauer tug that is in the background.


In the East river the next morning, we passed Cornell at the Brooklyn Barge, a food and drink venue I need to make time to visit.



Over by the Circle Line pier, it’s–well–Miss Circle Line, a reinvention of a Matton tug launched in 1955 and previously called Betsy.  Thanks to Paul Strubeck for reading the name board lettering here before it’s applied . . .  That was a joke, but thanks, Paul.


James William moves stone Mississippi River style down the sixth boro into the gargantuan building site encompassing the other five boros.


Near 79th Street, this unidentified tug was supporting a pier project.


Along the Palisades north of the GW Bridge, Comet pushed Eva Leigh Cutler.



And Miss Yvette moved a scow not far from where


Carolina Coast waited for her sugar barge to be emptied into the maw of the Domino plant in Yonkers.



All photos by will Van Dorp, who hopes to see you at the screening of Graves of Arthur Kill at the the Staten Island ferry terminal on August 13.

Is it Jonathan C Moran, which arrived in the sixth boro at some point in the past month?


It was.


Actually, as of now, it IS Jack T Moran, which arrived via the East River


yesterday afternoon, and will be christened along with Jonathan C, in a double ceremony at noon today.


More soon.  All photos by Will Van Dorp.

I should use this title more often, given the frequent renewal of robust industry in the sixth boro of NYC, but here is the previous usage.

The first six photo here comes from Jonathan Steinman, taken on June 13.  The Donjon tugs has delivered Chesapeake 1000 to a point just off Rockefeller University’s campus to prepare for lifting prefabricated modules for Rockefeller’s River Campus.


Step one for Donjon is to secure the gargantuan crane.


Then Atlantic Salvor moves into place to


receive the massive anchors, a job that Salvor may be IS uniquely qualified to perform.




The yellow lighted buoys mark the anchors’ positions.


By the time I got there on June 17, sans camera other than phone, several of the modules had already been lifted from the waterborne transport into the locations where they’ll stay for a very long time.  See time lapse of the installation of modules 1 and 2 on youtube here.


A dozen more modules will still be lifted when


water, tidal, and atmospheric conditions allow.

Click here for more information of the River Campus project, one of many construction sights to behold along the East over.  A calendar of additional lifting can be found here, subject to change.

And many thanks to Jonathan for use of his photos and information about the project.  Next time, I’ll bring my good camera.

Previous sights to behold there can be found here.

And while we’re on the topic of heavy equipment, here’s a vimeo update of of invisible gold project happening off Block Island.  I want to get back there soon.



Each year around this time, SUNY Maritime cadets go to sea.  Click here for photos from last year’s departure and here, for ports throughout the summer.  You can track the vessel here.

Here was a clue that a ship was headed this way.


The next three photos here come from Roger Munoz, high atop the 74th St ConEd plant.


That’s Roosevelt Island on the other side, at the southern tip of which i waited.




Here the training ship passes under the 59th Street Bridge,




and past the Empire State Building . . .




escorted by a fireboat and


two McAllister tugboats.




Some of the cadets who made this journey last summer are already employed as professional mariners today.  And somewhat related, any guesses how long ago this particular T/S Empire State, the VI,  was launched?  Click here for info on her former life.   To see some dramatic shots of the knife edge cutting through the middle of the Atlantic, click here.  If you’re impatient, jump ahead to the 3-minute mark.

Thanks much to Roger Munoz, a SUNY grad,  for the three photos from high atop the East River.

And here is a time lapse gif of ES VI passing, thanks to Rand Miller.


I’ve done posts about the East River, like these, and I’ve done a post at least about canyons, but it’s never struck me as vividly as right now how much this part of the East River is like a canyon.  These too are images of the varied sixth boro.


HMS Liberty pushes east past the cliffs before entering the terrifyingly-named Hell Gate.  Click here for the youtube video that periodically surfaces about a barge grounding in Hell Gate and then skillfully extricated.  Here and here are some discussions of that name . . . originally “beautiful opening.”


Sea Lion pushes a recycling barge up toward the Bronx River, I think, with


Dorothy J alongside, until


she makes the turn in the direction of the Harlem River, where the E. 91st marine transfer station–I think–is being built.  It’s been a long time since I’ve walked around up there.


And finally . . . it’s Mister T pushing scows eastbound and under the 59th Street Bridge.  And the aerial tramway to  . . . the sixth boro’s ski slopes?   Here’s the website for the operator . . . Leitner-Poma.    But I digress.


At the right times of tide, the waterway between Roosevelt Island and Manhattan Island move a lot of cargo.





All photos this week by Will Van Dorp.

The sixth boro tidal strait typical known as the East River, surrounded as it is by impressive urbanity, is nonetheless a significant waterway.  These photos today come from Jonathan Steinman, as did these of Ginga Lion, a 507′ loa vessel.


But Jonathan was surprised–as was I when I got his photos– to see ATB Freeport travel through the strait last week, even though New London, its destination, is closer by the “inside” route than by the alternative outside of Long Island, which it followed on the return.  The tape says the tug is 144′ loa and the barge–Chemical Transporter— is 521.’  While tug and barge are notched, the combined length of the units exceeds that of similar large units operated on this strait by Kirby, Bouchard, and Reinauer.  For what that’s worth.  Here’s some backstory on Freeport‘s costly construction.


Thanks to Jonathan for these photos.

Given today’s date, the reference above to Lion, and the beautiful weather outside in NYC, I need to link to this lamb post from a year and a half ago.

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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.

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.


October 2016
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