You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Ocean Groupe’ category.

A few days ago I posted this twilight view of Service Boat No. 1.

So, I hope she ‘s more defined by these shots from a bit later in the port of Montreal, as she passes Toronto Express.

 

Ocean Macareux (translates as “Ocean Puffin”) follows the grain elevators on her way to –maybe–

attach some rendering. . . .

Farther along, a spud barge moved by GFFM‘s

Vent Polaire (tr. Polar Wind) seems standing by, assisted by this very

shallow draft prime mover.

Over by the Beauharnois Dam, Deschenaux (tr. Channels) stands by.

Click here for more info on the Beauharnois generating station.

Anyone know where and when Deschenaux was built?

Farther upstream yet, in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, it’s Circle Polaire (tr. Polar Circle)

And closing out this post, Ocean A. Gauthier here heads downstream to assist Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin return to a floating condition. I believe she’s still undergoing repairs in the port of Johnstown ON.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

Here was “7” and 1 through 6.

This post will run photos from twilight to twilight…

Above and below, prosaically Service Boat No. 1 is doing pilot exchange duty.  She’s not large or particularly powerful or new, but in twilight before dawn she looked and sounded formidable.

Ocean Basques, here approaching the Laviolette Bridge, is a solid 200 miles upstream of the islands with the same namesake.

Ocean Basques was built in Collingwood ON, as was Ocean Sept-Isles.

Quite unique and speedy, Ocean Catatug 1 raced downstream.

As afternoon falls, Ocean Bertrand Jeansonne follows Ocean Henry Bain out of the homeport basin.

That’s the marine traffic control tower on the other side in Levis QC.

Returning to another twilight shot, here’s Ocean Henry Bain pushing a deep barge down bound.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

Mostly photos, and all taken between Quebec City and Montreal.  Ocean Charlie is a great name.

Ocean Henry Bain moves a barge, possibly from a passenger terminal.

x

Ocean Intrepide hangs at East Montreal.

But here in the South Shore Canal . . . the outlier . . .

 

Mary E. Hannah is way from out of the area.

 

And finally . . . in Valleyfield, it’s Cercle Polaire of GFFM.

 

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who posts when possible these days.

 

Enjoy three views of Ocean Echo II with different contexts:  the Iroquois Dam,

a scenic late summer meadow, and

the Iroquois lock itself.  Click here for pics dating from the dam and lock construction.

A  lot of Ocean Group tugs are included here, but Ocean Cormoran is not . . .

Although blue-hulled, VM/S St. Lambert was built for the SLSMC.

 

Ocean Macareux is a product of GFFM LeClerc, which I visited a few months back, and was on the wall in the old port of Montreal.

And last but not least, Denis M is a 1942 product of Russel Brothers.  Here she is on the wall just below Habitat 67.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

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.

I’ve mentioned before about my people the Dutch celebrating “old years day” on December 31.   As the child of immigrants, I’m blessed by this one of many ways they see the world differently, a perspective I’m happy to share.  So here is a retrospective of the year, the result of a process of scanning through photos in the blog library, not overthinking it.

January.  Gunhilde Maersk with James, Kirby, and JRT plus Miriam Moran.  the year of the 1200-footers aka ULCVs becoming commonplace in the sixth boro.

February.  Ocean Henry Bain serves as a safety boat during  the ice canoe race I documented in my Carnavalons posts.

March. Cerro Grande here escorted a Caribbean-bound LNG ship, one of all the Panama Tugs posts

April. When I saw this section of drained canal bed between O-6 to O-7 in Oswego, I thought the work’d never get done before the season began, but I was wrong.  Of all my 2018 NYS Canals posts, this and this posted with the greatest urgency.

May.  Reliable pushed seaward by Lucy H.  As of today, Reliable lies under the sea gathering fishes and entertaining Davy Jones near Shinnecock.

June.  Jay Bee V headed out on a high-profile mission.  Has she returned to the sixth boro yet?

July.  I missed Rosemary‘s christening because that’s what happens when you don’t look at your calendar. First come first serve for a few tugster lighthouse calendars.  Send me an email with your mailing address.   As I said, I ran a few extra when I made up my Christmas gifts.

August.  Kimberly Selvick with AEP barges was one of the treats I saw in Calumet.  This day south of Chicago planted a seed of curiosity about the Lake Michigan/Mississippi River link I hope to be able to explore in 2019.  Many thanks to Christine Douglas.

September.  J. W.  Cooper delivers a pilot in Port Colborne at the Lake Erie end of the Welland Canal.  Because I hadn’t a satisfying enough fix from the canal earlier, I returned there in October.

October.  One Stork, a pink ULCV,  came into town.  It wasn’t her first visit/delivery, but it was the first that I caught.  She’s currently in the sixth boro.

November.  Morton S. Bouchard IV rounds Shooters Island light, Bouchard celebrated a big anniversary this year.

December.  Ruth M. Reinauer heads west into the Kills in December, the start of heating oil season.

And that’s it for the year, time for me to securely lock up Tugster Tower and prepare myself to meet 2019.  The older I get, the more profound is my awareness that although I make many plans for a new year, I might not see the end of it.  It’s just how it is.  Every day is a blessing.  Last year had my own personal ultima thule; I pray that 2019 brings its new ones.

Thanks to everyone who read, commented, and assisted me in 2018.  Happy and constructive new year day by day to you all.

This photo comes from the Chantier Davie Canada, aka Davie Shipyard, across from Quebec City, taken in the first half of this month.  Two Ocean tugs assist a repurposed AHTS/Supply Ship Viking Vidar into the Davie’s docks to complete the transformation from private to public.  Click on the link in the previous sentence to see her in her Arctic colors. I wrote the names of the two Ocean tugs somewhere, but . . .  Maybe someone can help.

She formerly flew the Russian flag and was home-ported in Kholmsk on Sakhalin Island.  I sometimes call posts like these “second lives” stories.

She’s been renamed CCG Molly Kool, her namesake being a Canadian-born US sea captain.  For posts with Canadian Coast Guard vessels, click here.

In other news, if you don’t see Ocean Taiga in Quebec City these days, here’s a development from last summer that I missed.  This also explains why Ocean Delta now flies the Jamaican flag.

And just for the record, as of 1030 this morning, I’ve received about 30 emails, over 20 of which have the words “cyber” and “giving” in them.  Enough!

This is the grande finale, although you’ll notice I didn’t know when the finalization would  . . . finalize.  Spotters on the bow of the safety boat watch the canoeists through the snow squalls.

And at 31 minutes after the start, the first boat  (Archibald micro brasserie) returning from the Lévis side comes into view,

pursued by two others.

Archibald lands and races home….

 

with the next two running close together.

Three more arrive closely clumped.

 

 

But that’s when I realized I’d missed an important detail:  they make more than one lap!  Notice the Archibald team heading back out!  Later I believe I understood they were disqualified, although I didn’t understand why.

Now I understand that it’s more a marathon than a sprint.

 

 

At this point I head back to point 1 (See yesterday’s map.) to watch from the start/finish line.  Notice the three incoming boats from over by the pine trees where I got the previous photos from.

The two teams push their canoe past the two 8200+ hp behemoths  

to take the checkered flag.  By this time, I’ve lost track of who’s who and in what place.

Here’s a tavern to help you celebrate.  Care for a glass of Caribou?  Click here to learn the secret of the incongruous plastic canes I saw a lot of men carrying.

I headed up the street past the ice taverns so that after tasting something I had to go only downhill to my snowcave.

These ice bars–I was told–go up around Christmas and by March start to melt.  For now, they are exquisite.  And the bottles to the right of Jaegermeister are local spirits:  Quartz, Chic choc rum, Coureur des bois whiskey, and Ungava gin.

As I said, from the ice bars it’s downhill to my snow cave inside the walled city and return to hibernation.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.  For more photos, click here.  For a video clip of the snow bath–I did NOT indulge–click here.

For some photos of a clear winter’s day in Quebec City last year, click here.  For more frozen St. Lawrence riverbanks photographed in 2017, click here.

 

The premier event of Carnaval de Québec has become ice canoeing, a unique sport stemming from early French settlement along the St. Lawrence:  in summer boats connected the opposite sides of the river, and in winter sleds traversed, but during the times between, canoes alone could provide this contact.  The need for treacherous crossings ended after the introduction of steamboats and building of bridges.

Now, hazards are addressed, and a total of 290 canoeists raced this year, 58 canoes.  Rules require that canoes weigh at least 225 pounds and provide a prescribed amount of flotation.

Use the map below to orient yourself.  The top three photos I took standing at point 1 looking toward the river.  Here a crane lowers a canoe onto the frozen portion of outer part of Bassin Louise.

See the pine tree cluster in the photo above?  That’s point 2.  U is upstream (to the right) and D, downstream (to the left).  The race happened on an ebb tide, so ice floes moved at 4 to 5 knots from U to D.  Obviously, since the race is from 1 to 2 to 3 for four crossings, racers leave the bassin and turn upstream, making the course triangular.

 

The rest of these photos I took from point 2, over near the pine trees.  Here the safety tug Ocean Henry Bain departs the bassin to break up ice that’s gathered at the opening over the past hour.

You can barely make out the city of Lévis–marked as 3 on the map–on the other side.

The bonhomme banner flies from the mast.

After the third prolonged blast from Ocean Henry Bain, the first racers–the elite women’s teams– depart, five -person crews wearing spiked crampons push the waxed bottomed canoes to open water.  The technique here is this:  keep two hands and one knee on the boat at all times in case your boot goes through.

Note the crowd;  numbers estimation has become a contentious sport in itself, but I’d guess 10,000 spectators braved the cold to be there.

Here the transition from pushing to rowing–with spiked oars–

begins.

Ten minutes later, other teams head out, again after a third blast from Ocean Henry Bain. 

Only the crew member at the stern has a paddle, rather than an oar.

Recall that at this point, crews turn upstream to contend with the 4 to 5 knot current;  the water flows that fast, and any ice chunks there do too.  So the technique here is to get momentum upstream ASAP.

Or else.  Here the blue canoe–heading for the tug, i.e., the wrong direction, got pushed downstream by that ice floe.  The red canoe also going the wrong way got turned by the blue canoe.  The three teams on the ice need to get to open water upstream ASAP because they are floating downstream.

Click on the photo of Jean Anderson below to get the article I’ve copied it from, but you’ll have to translate it.  Anderson is ice canoeing royalty,  a perennial champion of this event, as well as an innovator of gear for the sport.  Jean and his brother Jacques are mentioned in this article in English.

If you decide you have to witness ice canoeing, four more races are coming up in the next 30 days:  Montreal Feb. 11, Isle -aux-Coudres Feb. 17, Sorel-Tracy Feb. 24, and the grand championship back at Bassin Louise March 3.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who wonders what other unique sports events like this there are . . .  All I can think of right now are woodcutters festival like the one in Tupper Lake and Boonville and the Iditarod.  Surfing maybe?  Schooner racing?  Eleven Cities Tour? Bronc riding?  Help me out here.

To start out, here’s the Groupe Océan dock in the old port of Quebec.   The large tug to the left is Ocean Taiga; its twin Ocean Tundra is to its right.  Here’s my article on the 8200 hp twins (118′ loa x 42′) in February 2018 issue of ProfessionalMariner.

Question:  As the temperature range at this location this past weekend was a high of 12 F to a low of -6 F, is that ice safe to walk on?  Quebec has 12′ tides.

The photo above shows the entrance to Bassin Louise.  Below, Ocean Clovis T enters the bassin from the River after assisting a ship into the commercial port.  Note the straight-line break in the ice and the open water there?  To the left of that line, the ice is still;  to its right, the flood tide moves the ice upstream.  Interestingly, Ocean Clovis T used to be called Stevns Icequeen.

Now I digress, but I’ll get back to the icy river soon.  I went to Quebec for Winter Carnaval– Carnaval de Québec, originally celebrated in 1894 and then annually since 1955.  When you see “-ons” at the end of a French word, often it’s a verb and makes a suggestion.  Dansons means let’s dance.  Carnavalons means let’s carnival . . . sort of like Mardi Gras, that other pre-Lenten festival, just in a different climate.  Allons!

Above and below, the red-hatted guy is the mascot of the Carnaval, aka bonhomme carnaval, and his image is everywhere . . . like Santa Claus but it unrelated to Christmas.  He’s a snowman, i.e., a bonhomme de neige.  The snow sculpture is just called toboggan.   And notice the belt, aka ceinture fléchée, or arrow sash.

Here a sash-wearing inuksuk of ice blocks greets a statue of Champlain.  A variation of the inuksuk was the logo of the 2010 Winter Olympics.

But let’s go back to the River, where tugster meets the duchesses of Carnaval.  See the Chateau Frontenac in the distance in the upper city to the right?  We all have warm smiles for 4 degrees F, eh?

The man dressed like a logger . . . he’s the narrator for the events down by the river;  the vuvuzela bearers on either side, their answering his quiz questions, or trying to.  That’s the River behind them.

So the question .  . could you walk over the ice piles here?  They’ve just been broken up by Ocean Clovis T and,

right behind, Ocean Raynald T (ex- Stevns Iceflower ) after they assisted aptly-named Arctic into a berth in the cargo port.  I posted a photo of the spoon-bowed Arctic here (scroll;  it’s almost the last one) in November.  Ask me and I’ll post more photos of her.

Well, the sauvetage nautique  (water rescue) truck is there next to the pilots’ station.

And farther into the bassin, over by the lock, there ARE folks on the ice setting cones.

More tomorrow.  All photos by Will Van Dorp, except the one with the duchesses.  Any misread of the events is my fault alone.

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

Join 1,307 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

November 2019
M T W T F S S
« Oct    
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930