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0631.  I had planned to get photos Cape Edmont depart the sixth boro towed by Kurt J. Crosby . . . on Saturday morning.  When I saw on AIS that McAllister tugs were mustering at the opening of the Bayonne drydock, I thought they just would depart the drydock where it had spent the past months and then do some checks before leaving.

0638.  Sure . . . they’ll depart Saturday morning.  The tugs here are Bruce A., Gregg, Ellen, and Ava M. McAllister. Kurt J. is on the wall south of the drydock. 

0642.  By now Kurt J. had come off the wall.

0655.  Kurt J. was still tailing, but by

0717, Kurt J.  had moved to the bow of the ship, and I was wondering if I should change my plans for the day. 

By 0843, Sorensen Miller had followed the tow south into the Lower Bay, and by then, I was pretty sure I’d missed the boat.

Disappointing, but not the first time. Some gratuitous photos of the vessels then?  I never did get a good shot of the MSC MARAD ship.

And an previously unused photo of the big tug.  Does anyone have photos of this tugboat out of the water?  I’d love to see the propulsion configuration . . . the wheels.

Some days you catch the boat, or the fish, or ___, and then there are those other days.  Maybe my editor will assemble a staff?  

On that subject, I will be traveling inland starting from the 10th until October.  Road photos I’ll be able to do plenty when i have wifi, but that invaluable but anonymous staff will have to carry the water, do the lifting,  and/or take the photos . . . .

September 11, 2001 was one of those days that changed you. Without a doubt, no matter where you were or what you were doing, you remember that day. We are still in its aftermath.

It recast me too.  That morning I was at work in a Brooklyn three-floor building five miles from the Towers, across the East River. A friend called before 0900 to tell me to look out a west-facing window.  I watched for some seconds, black smoke pouring from near the top of one of the towers. Concluding it must have been an accident, maybe a small plane or a helicopter, I got back to work. Shortly after 0900, the friend called again, frantic, and told of reports that two hijacked planes had crashed into the towers; more hijacked planes were in the air, she said. I returned to the window, and now much more smoke, yellowish gray, blanketed both Towers. For me, the rest of the day was a blur, inconceivable sights in the distance across the river, swirling rumors of horrors.

We all have our take on that morning, even hundreds and thousands of miles from lower Manhattan. Mostly I don’t talk about 9/11 much, and I’ve not yet gone to the museum located there now, likely I’ll never go. I’ve mostly avoided reading about that day although I have read widely about the wars it spawned.

I made an exception when I was asked to review Jessica Dulong’s Saved at the Seawall, a re-issued version, paperback. In a preface added to this version, DuLong writes that “only after years of avoiding conversation about my time at Ground Zero did I finally make my peace with the human need for September 11 stories. Chronicling catastrophe necessarily creates a distance, a remove.”

She interviewed at least 75 people who were involved in the immediate aftermath, some on the island but many more at the seawall and farther out in the harbor, the sixth boro, on boats.  A list names all the boats that evacuated hundreds of thousands of people from lower Manhattan, but her book chronicles what occurred from the perspective of rescuer and rescued alike.

Flipping through pages as I write this review, I notice that 150 pages into the book, she’s recounting events not even two full hours after the first plane hit. The details are palpable, and told with skill.

In the epilogue, DuLong states that reflecting on rescuers that day has “reconstructed my faith in the human soul.” Their acts “struck me less about heroism and more about pragmatism, resourcefulness, and simple human decency. If you have the wherewithal, you step up.”  I’d see it as a variation on the international code, written and unwritten, that mariners have a duty to rescue those in distress at sea;  in this case, when the USCG issued a call to “all available boats,” mariners in the harbor responded and rescued people in distress on an island in distress.

I’m grateful Jessica DuLong interviewed the folks in this book, recorded their experience before memory could distort it, and then meticulously reconstructed that morning from dozens of perspectives. I was especially surprised to see a half dozen people I know interviewed in the book, people whom I’ve never heard talk about that day.

I highly recommend reading this book.  You can order it from the publisher here.

Previous book reviews can be seen here.

If you want the International Red Cross view on this, click here.

 

It’s hard to believe, but I’ve not been to the Great North River Tugboat Race since 2014, but in normal times, September 5 would see the next race.  But we’ve dispensed with the “normal times” concept for the time being.

In selecting the batch for this post, I wanted splash, froth, bubbles, and the effervescence the river can react with when tons of steel and thousands of horsepower push through the ever changing water.   The next two photos are from that 2014 race. 

It was overcast during the race, but an hour or so later, when pushing contests were happening and

the wakes flattened out and we sized up USAV MGen. Anthony Wayne, patches of blue appeared.  I should leave you in suspense about how this push went.  Let me put it this way;  they left town not long after the push-off.

2013 was an equally overcast day, and again, not to identify every tugboat in that lineup, it appears that W. O. Decker has either jumped the gun or activated its jet drive and will soon rise up out of the Hudson on her hydrofoil assists. I’d guess the latter.

See what I told you . . . Decker has gone so far ahead that it’s already over the horizon.

Second lap maybe for Decker?

It’s starting to appear that in 2012, as in ’13 and ’14, it was overcast.

It was great to see Buchanan 12, usually burdened with a half dozen stone barges, disencumbered and frothing up the river.  That’s the 1907 Pegasus back there too.

In 2011, I was able to get a photo of the racing craft along with sky spray by one of the fireboats present, likely 343.  What’s remarkable comparing the photo above with the one below is the color of the water;  hurricane Irene had dropped a lot of rain upstate and all the tributaries sent that into the Hudson with tribute in the form of silt.

Quantico Creek and Maurania III did an excellent job of stirring up the water.

But again, it was overcast and hazy over silty water.

However, in 2010, we had blue skies that really accentuated the DonJon boats like Cheyenne and

the harbor colossus, Atlantic Salvor.

In 2009, there were wispy clouds, allowing the “queen of the day” to be Ellen McAllister. But look who else showed up!!!!

Urger.   Urger would EASILY have won the race, but she was doing what she does best . . .  urging all the other boats and crews to be fleeter than she, holding herself back, allowed herself to be that day.

All photos and commentary, WVD. See you at the races in 2022.

 

 

Some of these photos are from late August 2021, and others are from August 2011, and many of you can tell the difference.

Above that’s Meredith C. Reinauer,  and below . . . Tasman Sea.

 

 

 

And this is Teresa with her hot oil barge Acadia.

 

 

Following Tasman Sea, that’s Jane A. Bouchard.

 

 

And that’s it.  All photos, WVD.

The photos with Tasman Sea and Jane A. Bouchard are from a decade ago.  The last I knew, Tasman is tied up at a dock in Houma, LA.   Jane A. is part of the Bouchard fleet tied up in Staten Island, awaiting sale.  Seeing the skyline of lower Manhattan might have been a clue.  More on that in posts in the next week  or so . . .

Teresa has been one of my unicorns . . . and this is the first time this 1999 tug and barge have appeared on this blog, to the best of my memory.   And Meredith C. is, IMHO, a beautiful tugboat.

 

Welcome back from Summer Sea Term this year.  An FDNY boat provided a water display welcome on the far side of Governors Island, but my vantage point, as suggested by a SUNY grad, was Brooklyn Heights.  This was the view from the Esplanade and Pierrepont.  To see my perspective on previous occasions, click on the tag above.   From the Heights, the overcast and almost precipitating morning dimmed the many gantry cranes in the distant port.

When she was delivered in 1962 as a break bulk freighter SS Oregon, she would have been typical of freighters on the high seas.   Since 1990, returning aboard from summer sea terms has been a rite of passage for thousands of SUNY grads.  I hope I have my dates right;  if not, I’m sure you’ll correct me.

Passing the ferry terminals at the tip of Manhattan must have looked quite different back 30 years ago; the sight from 100 years ago would have differed dramatically. . . 

as would any FDNY or NYPD escort vessels.

Back then, in the foreground, there would be commercial activity and warehouses, not

parkland with

an ever-growing cover of urban forest

almost obscuring the training ship as it passes beneath the Brooklyn Bridge.

Welcome back. 

All photos, WVD, with thanks to Steve Munoz to try out this view.

Another training ship came through here just a week or so ago.   Here are a few more from other maritime academies.

 

 

Random maybe but mostly Nord Summit appears here while lightering in the Upper Bay for about a week before heading upriver to Coeymans. 

Obsidian was in the boro a bit, but has now headed for the Gulf port of Houston. 

Foreshortening makes it appear these cranes would crash.

Had you noticed Emma Miller, little lube ship in the top photo?

 

 

Pacific Moonstone was in town a few weeks back and I’ve been waiting to use this photo. 

It looks like Atlantic Salvor off the port side with a dump scow.

Now you know I had to include a tanker called Starman next to STI Brixton, and what I think is Andrea alongside. 

 

All photos, no container ships, WVD.

 

 

She’s not young,

but if this info is to be believed, she’s 147′ x 50′ x

16′ max draft and powered by three engines totaling 16,500 hp

and can carry $829,321.70 of fuel at current NJ prices!!

!@#$ !@!!,

she’s a big vessel, 

as an understatement.

she has much more than 16,500 hp attitude!  And she’s unmistakably an Otto Candies boat, lines that can be seen in lots of former Candies boats. 

I missed her in May when she brought in a dead ship, and I don’t know why she’s in town, but I’m glad I caught her. 

All photos, WVD. 

A similar vessel was featured in this post from 2014.

Hot to sweet . . .  could have been a title too.

I hope obscure titles are not too off-putting, but I just realized that in late August 2019, I encountered Calusa Coast on the Cuyahoga while she was still on her contract to push liquid asphalt around the Inland Seas, aka the Great Lakes.  To be liquid, asphalt needs to be over 250 degrees F, so that assist tug Cleveland here is close to some very hot liquid, safely enclosed in steel barge Delaware.

 

Two years ago, Calusa Coast and barge Delaware were nearing their contract.  

Nine months ago, my friend Jack Ronalds caught the unit newly in salt water at the Strait of Canso.  Earlier this week, I caught this unit, Calusa Coast pushing

sugar barge (technically, dry bulk barge) Jonathan up from coastal Florida to Yonkers. 

That structure midships on Jonathan is a hatch crane.

As of this morning, they are still discharging at ASR, the sugar refinery.  I’ve caught Jonathan and Sugar Express there on other occasions.

Come to think of it . . .  Yonkers must be hot and sweet there now.

All photos, WVD.

This title means odds and ends . . . so this is a post that represents my clearing my decks, or rather desk or electronic folders.

Compare the two screen grabs below, first recreational boats filling the Sound but heading for safe haven in advance of Henri last weekend.

Monday morning . . . the same view.  Of course, pre-AIS, small craft would do the same thing, just there’d be no trace of it.

Occasionally while looking at AIS, you might see a sub.

Might there be a portal in that location between Montauk and Block Island?  If you see subs one day and Viking Starship another day, there may be cause for wonder . . ., and yes, I’m joking.

Any idea what these tracks are?

Above and below are tracks left by the same vessel, Ferdinand R. Hassler, a NOAA vessel used for hydrographic charting, among other tasks.  Thanks to  Hassler for reliable charts. I’ve yet to catch a photo of her.

Below is a photo from the 2014 Hudson River tugboat race, an event that will again not happen this year.  The big gray tug is Anthony Wayne.  A sister tug sold last week at auction for, as I recall just under $1.5 million.  Anyone know who the winning bidder was?

And finally, excuse the backlit photos, down along the BAT side of the Upper Bay, this assemblage has been anchored.  The tugboat is Ocean Tower, and she’s alongside

what looks to be a scow, a crane barge, and a crew boat.  The barge with the landing platform

is Dutra’s Paula Lee.  Anyone know where they’ll be working?

And while we’re doing all kinds of stories here, do you know “Bring Your Dreams,” aka BYD Motors?  Well, they have a connection with a NYC port here and here.  BYD . . .  you know that’s just begging for parody, like the one about F. O. R. D.  . . .

All photos, and odds and ends, chosen, WVD.

 

I knew TS Kennedy was in the Upper Bay, but I thought I’d just catch her at anchor.  Then I saw a puff of smoke and

she came around and

met us on a parallel course.

I know this is a digression, but don’t these lifeboats look a bit like well-rounded automobile bodies?

I got these pics I could as we passed

backlit thought they were on a hazy day . . . .

The 1967-launched ex-Velma Lykes, ex-Cape Bon, ex-TS Enterprise was first converted to a training ship about 20 years ago.

My first surprise was the flag banner, although I remembered then that there had been this arrangementGeneral Rudder had been through the sixth boro about a month ago.

 

I got these photos mid-morning yesterday, and

later in the day, not quite sunset, I checked their location on AIS and had my next surprise . . .

they had raced eastward on the Sound and were nearly past Orient Point making 16 kts!

Happy training.  This ship will be replaced in 2023….

All photos, WVD.

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