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Today the sixth boro and environs face Henri, whose story is yet to be told.  August 26, 2011 . . . I was at the Staten Island Ferry terminal, and these Hurricane Irene signs were up.  When Irene’s story was told, it had done unusual damage upstate far from salt water;  here’s more.  Some repairs took until 2016 to complete.  From here I took the ferry to Whitehall in Manhattan, and then over I walked to South Street Seaport, where I wanted to see storm preparations.  See the story at the end of this post.  

In late August 2011, I was documenting a slow decomposition, getting footage of what became a documentary film called Graves of Arthur Kill. Gary Kane was the producer;  I was the director, or something.  If you’ve not yet seen the documentary, you can order it by clicking on the disintegrating wooden tugboat image along the left aside of this blog page.  Some of the vessels in this post are discussed by multiple sources in the documentary.  Keep in mind that these photos and the footage in the doc recorded these scenes a decade ago, almost to the day.  Hurricanes, freezing and thawing, and just plain daily oxidation have ravaged these already decrepit vessels for another 10 years, so if you were to go to these exact locations, not an easy feat, you’d see a devolution.

I’m not going to re-identify all these boats–already done elsewhere and in the doc–except to say we saw a variety of boats like this tanker above and the WW2 submarine chaser alongside it.

Other WW2 vessels repurposed for post-war civilian purposes are there.  More were there but had been scrapped prior to 2011.

See the rust sprouting out from behind WW2 haze gray.

In the past decade, the steam stack on this coastal ferry has collapsed, and the top deck of the ferry to the right has squatted into the ooze below.

Some steel-hulled steam tugboats we never managed to identify much more than maybe attributing a name;  they’d been here so long that no one remained alive who worked on them or wanted to talk about them.

We used a rowboat and had permission to film there, but the amount of decomposing metal and wood in the water made it nearly impossible to safely move through here. We never got out of the boat to climb onto any of these wrecks.  That would be if not Russian roulette then possibly some other form of tempting fate.

Most emblematic of the boats there might be this boat, USS ATR-89, with its struggling, try-to-get-back-afloat stance.  She was built in Manitowoc, WI, a town I’ve since frequently visited.

Wooden hulls, wooden superstructure . . .  I’m surprised they’ve lasted as long as they have.

Since taking this photo in August 2011, I’ve learned a lot about this boat and its four sisters, one of whom is now called Day Peckinpaugh

I’ve spent a lot of hours this month pulling together info on Day Peckinpaugh, launched as Interwaterways Line 101;  the sister vessel above and below was launched in July 1921 in Duluth as Interwaterways Line 105. The ghost writing in the photo below says Michigan, the name she carried during the years she ran bulk caustic soda between the Michigan Alkali plant in Wyandotte MI and Jersey City NJ via the Erie Canal.  Anyone local have photos of this vessel in the sixth boro or the Hudson River?  I have a photo of her taken in 1947 transiting a lock in the NYS Canal system, but I’ll hold off on posting that for a few weeks when the stories come out. What you’re looking at above and below is the remnants of a vessel currently one century and one month old. 

The Interwaterways Line boats were designed by Capt. Alexander McDougall, who also designed the whalebacks of the Great Lakes, like Meteor. Here‘s a whole blog devoted to McDougall’s whalebacks.

This ferry used to run between Newburgh and Beacon;  on this day in August 2011, we just rowed our boat onto the auto deck.

At the beginning of this post I mentioned Hurricane Irene and going over to South Street Seaport Museum.  Two of these vessels here have seen a lot of TLC$ in the past decade. That’s a good ending for now.  Helen, with the McAllister stack, is still afloat and waiting.

All photos in August 2011, WVD.

A final sentiment on Graves of Arthur Kill . . . Gary Kane and I set out to document what was actually in this much-discussed boneyard;  we wanted to name and show what existed, acknowledge what had existed but was already gone, and dispel some of the legends of this place.  We were both very proud of the work and happy with this review in  Wired magazine.  If you still want to write a review, get in touch.  It would be like writing a series review of Gilligan’s Island, but still a worthy exercise.

 

Here are previous iterations, newest hulls that have become less new hulls. 

Look closely just forward of the ferry and you’ll see a ready-made caption that this ferry is NEW.

I’m also pretty sure this is the first post featuring Dann Ocean’s Colonel.

The ferry departed the shipyard in panhandle Florida only eight days before.  For outatowners, the Staten Island ferry is free, over 200 years old, and was partly owned at one point by Cornelius Vanderbilt.  This new ferry cost just over $100 million;  two more of the class will follow.

Here are more facts about the SI Ferry.

The ferry’s namesake is a Staten Island native who died in Afghanistan almost exactly eight years ago;  for the story of SSG. Michael H. Ollis, click here.

 

The ferry was eased into the docks at Caddell Dry Dock yesterday by Colonel, James E. Brown, and Ruby M.  At Caddell’s, the plywood will be removed from lower windows and the SSG Michael H. Ollis will be prepared for service.

All photos, WVD, who hopes to hop a ride some day soon.

 

See the note at the end of this post.

Traffic in the harbor of NYC, aka the sixth boro, has a lot of unpredictability.  I tend to do a fair amount of categorizing in this blog. 

For example, this was a surprise.  Usually this vessel–Admiral Richard E. Bennis–shuttles the river between Haverstraw and Ossining,

but here it must have had business in the Upper NY Bay. Bennis had a distinguished but tragically short USCG career.

A more typical sixth boro scene is this:  Jonathan C assisting an 8200 teu Maersk ship out to sea.

The only markings on this ferry is the name, Schuyler Meyer.  Its namesake had a storied life, but my favorite stories relate to his 1991 saving and reimagining tugboat Urger.  That story is mentioned in this article from a few years ago.  It’s expanded upon in Riverhorse by William Least-Heat Moon.

In the warm months, lots of small boats take fisherfolk out to hook what’s schooling.

More containers come into the port escorted by James D., a Moran 6000.

Joyce  D. moves a small deck barge to a shoreside project somewhere.

Andrea takes bunker fuel to a recently arrived ship.

Explorer-class CMA CGM Amerigo Vespucci comes in at dawn . . . hazy dawn, with at least four tugboats getting it around Bergen Point.

A warm morning brings an NYPD launch out about

the same time as this small dragger (?) explores the outside of the channel as CSCL Brisbane comes in.

All photos, WVD, of this place that always has a rich variety of traffic…

Now if you have a few free hours, go sit somewhere near the bay, dangle your toes in the water if you like.  Or, read tugster.  Or, a new option has presented itself:  watch this new high-res harbor cam sited near Lehigh Valley Barge 79 aka the Waterfront Museum.  Or  . . . do all three at times you can.  Waterfront Museum does their cam through “stream time live”, where you can also pay attention to shipping at points in the Great Lakes, the Mississippi, and Alaska.

And if you can and if you feel like, send some $$ in the direction of the Waterfront Museum.

I’m preparing a “road fotos” post from last week’s gallivant, but along the way, I walked along a portion of the Lehigh Canal.

 

After I return to CSF with a camera, I’ll pick up part 1 again.   For now, let’s look at another ferry line that crosses the Sound.  By the way, how many ferries do you see in the photo below?

It was a foggy day in Port Jefferson that I chose to walk on for a jaunt across the Sound.

Grand Republic, certainly not the first vessel to carry that name, was getting some maintenance, so her sister vessel, P. T. Barnum, would be my ride. More on a much-earlier Grand Republic and a question at the end of this post.

This Grand Republic and this P. T. Barnum were launched four years apart, in 2003 and 1999, respectively. Mr. P. T. Barnum was a co-founder of the line, creating a ferry route that ran between his hometown of Bridgeport, nicknamed Park City,  and the port in Long Island farm country, Port Jefferson.

We backed out of the dock of a very foggy village of Port Jeff.

Here’s a phenomenon I don’t understand:  on either side of P. T. Barnum, I saw these rainbows.  Why there?

Mid-Sound we passed Park City.  She’s the oldest (1986),  smallest, and greenest of the current fleet.  When Park City was launched in Florida, she apparently made alligators fly;  read about it here.

Back in March, while in Seaside Park, one of the big parks in Bridgeport, I watched Park City sail into the port.

Later that same windy and cold March day, I watched Grand Republic sail in.

Here I’m looking north from just inside Port Jefferson harbor.  It’s worth a glance at a map to see how protected this harbor is.

All photos, WVD.

Related:  I’ve heard there’s a difference between the McAllister family and the McAlister family, the latter referred to here.  Can anyone jog my memory?  Of course, that may be yet another story than the one recounted in the 150 Years of Family Business book, in relation to the tugboat Iona McAlister.   Has anyone been to the Greenpoint bar called Grand Republic?

Mostly unrelated:  Here are two interesting postcards, one featuring the Starin  fleet, which McAllister acquired to form their own ferry business, and second . . . an appropriation of the Statue both from 150 years ago.

If you ride the ferry or just visit Port Jeff, spend a few minutes inside the office for some vintage photos like Nonowantuc (a native name for part of the Port Jeff area) and

Victor.  Info on all the boats can be found here.

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New London with bow ramp open here . . . has to be the fastest and one of the cleanest boat for Cross Sound Ferry (CSF).  I mean cleanest burning,  with its recently added Tier 3 Cummins power.  She was CSF’s first new build, coming off the ways in New London in 1979.

What I like about New London is the design allows a passenger to see over the vehicles at the wake, vehicles oriented toward the stern

or the bow.

John H, the largest CSF  vessel, was built for the company in 1989.

She has the capacity of 100 vehicles and 1000 passengers.

Mary Ellen was in 1983 by Offshore Shipbuilding in Palatka Florida as Grand Republic for the Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Ferry (BPPF).  That fleet will be next when I post more on ferries on Long Island Sound.

Once loaded at Orient Point NY, she backs out of the rack while lowering the bow ramp.  In that she reminds me of Badger, although there, it’s the stern ramp that lowers upon departure.

I did several trips on BPPJ ferries back in 2000 as I shifted domicile from MA to NY, so I’m guessing I rode or saw this vessel ass Grand Republic at that time.

Caribbean Ferry is called that because she originally worked in the Caribbean after coming off the ways at Blount in the 1970s.

And until I get photos of the remaining CSF boats, we’ll end here with the most distinguished, Cape Henlopen, launched in 1943 as USS Buncombe County (LST-510) from Jeffersonville Boat and Machine Company.  In early 1944 as an LST, she departed NYC for a convoy crossing over to Europe, where she took part in the D-Day landings.  Subsequent to the end of WW2, she worked as a ferry crossing the Chesapeake Bay, then Delaware Bay, before coming to CSF in 1983.  She also operates with Tier 3 engines at this point.  That’s the light on Little Gull Island in the distance.

One goal I’ve set for the nearer future is to ride or at least see all the other CSF boats.

All photos, WVD.

See the previous 17 posts off along this tangent here.

Let’s start here.  Name that truck.  Answer follows.

How about this vehicle, with its brand info stripped off?

It should be easier from this angle.

If you were wondering about the context for the top photo, here’s more of the field.  Note the USCG members on either side of the “bridge.”

This “marine highway” shows that the ferry needs to rotate to put stern to at the dock.   Know the ferry line?  This ferry itself?  The ferry in the distance?

On the same run as the top photo, that’s a mighty narrow bridge to the pier.

 

Ditto.  I can’t tell the brand of the red truck above or the blue below, although it would be safe (though not necessarily correct) to say a Peterbilt above and a KW below.

It takes expert judgement to drive onto and off this ferry.

And finally . . .  here’s the top mystery pickup.  The name’s on the tailgate.

All photos, WVD, from the ferry New London.  The red pickup is a 1950 Chevrolet.  The black/gray pickup . . . a 2021 Jeep Gladiator.  The other ferry is Susan Anne. Click here to see the whole Cross Sound fleet, including the ex-Zephyr.

. . . or at least among the newest.

Above,  the new Governors Island ferry–I am a bit late with this but had not seen it until a few days ago–and the previous one–Coursen–meet.  For a vintage photo of Coursen with a USCG bowstripe, click here.

I believe it carries vehicles as well as passengers, but I didn’t get a thorough enough view to confirm what that may look like. Does this new ferry have a name?

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who posted about another attempt at a new ferry to the island some years ago here.

And if this ferry is late news, here’s more late news about some boats NOT currently in the sixth boro because of the Golden Ray project down along the Georgia coast:  Atlantic Salvor, Atlantic Enterprise, and Meagan Ann are all assisting with the salvage.

 

 

I heard it long before it emerged from the morning fog at Saint-Siméon.  I was on the north shore waiting t catch the boat to the south, Rivière-du-Loup.

Canadians must have a surplus of !!! available for their signage, but seeing this made me walk away from the immediate area.

Some of you can likely already identify this self-unloading bulk carrier, heavy laden most probably with ore.  Her identity is given at the end of this post.

I mentioned previously that the Saint Lawrence is wide,

so wide there’s never been a thought to build bridges downstream from Quebec City.

Trans-St. Laurent is in its 56th season on this run, operating until ice thickness prevents it.

Note the steering pole, aka spear pole to “point to the course.”

This is NOT a great pic or even a good one, but that white speck is one of the several beluga whales that passed during the crossing.

Brandy Pot Light is on the Rivière-du-Loup (Wolf River) side of the crossing, and here’s a glance at

Saguenay Fjord National Park . . . in that hollow almost center of the photo.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

And the laker with the fog horn I heard . . . it was Algoma Mariner.

The 11% grade, per road signs, leads to a strawberry vendor if you make the left and a ferry dock if you follow all the way down to the Saint Lawrence.  See the two ferries in the distance?  Click here for a view from roughly the same location in March two years ago.

Ferry Joseph Savard approaches for the ride to L’isle aux Coudres, 60 miles closer to the Atlantic than Quebec City, nominally island of hazelnuts, crowding this side of the stream, where the deep water channel for all traffic .  The flats around the island show the result of a 13′ tidal range. The page on this ferry has not been translated, but it was built in 1985, has two Bombardier engines, possibly this one,  propelling a single screw and generating 3894 hp. Capacities are 367 passengers and 55 vehicles.  And it’s free.

 

One, of many, appeal of this ferry is that on the island side it lands immediately next to Ocean Group shipyard.

Vessels outside and on the hard included Fjord Saguenay, a Rio Tinto boat!  Rio Tinto has a large aluminum plant at the head of Saguenay fjord, my destination.

Also in the yard are Ocean Arctique and Ocean Sept-Isles.  The latter is a Collingwood product;  click here and scroll to see what has become of the Collingwood shipyard.

And just north of the blue hulls, it’s Ocean Brochu.  Note the Voith-Schneider drive and skeg under the hull.

Two vessels I’ve published in ProfessionalMariner about were built here, Ocean Traverse Nord and Ocean Taiga. The latter vessel has recently moved to the Arctic on Baffin Island duty.

We’ll return to L’isle aux Coudres, but for now, let’s cross back over to the mainland to catch this traffic and more. It’s the other ferry Radisson, named for the fur trader and explorer.  Savard is named for an early, maybe first, French settler of the island.

Here you see a container ship in the channel located on the narrow strait between the mainland and the island.  Just ahead of the ship, you see the 11% grade hill from the beginning of this post.  And the village atop the hill is a hamlet in Les Eboulements.

 

Here’s a side view of the church prominent in the village;  notice the river above the car to the left?

And let’s end with another snapshot of the church, presbytere des Eboulements.   Here’s the best “eboulements” translation . . . .

Let’s leave it here.  Tomorrow we return to the island.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Sometimes voices talk to me as I’m taking photos.  I realize I’m leaving myself wide open when I write something like that, but I’m not joking.  Especially when a vessel named Opportunity comes in.  Be honest.  What would the voice in your head say?

 

And then it goes away?

So once you register that “opportunity comes and goes,”  and then you see other vessels doing the same . . . .?

sure . . . Yankee comes and goes.  Her sister vessel . . .  Freedom comes and goes.

Even clunkier names . . .  RHL Agilitas . . . yup . . . .

she comes and goes . . . from Kingston Jamaica to Halifax Canada.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who himself comes and goes.   Then other times he eats shoots and leaves. 

 

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Graves of Arthur Kill

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