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Let’s start with Sugar Islander II moving school kids and commuters across from the Island to the US Soo.

The 1951 Empire State was tied up near those kayaks.

Not far away was Superior Pilot

Maybe someone can help out with more info on Soo Marine Supply’s 60′.

Iowa and Wyoming wait for the next job.  Between them, they have 202 years of work, with Iowa dating from 1915.

Stephan M. Asher has worked since 1954.

Owen M. Frederick and Cheraw are USACE boats.

Into the McArthur lock we go. 

In the distance Federal Yukina discharged some dry bulk material, ore maybe. 

discharge a dry bulk material.

Queen of the lakes Paul has started the climb into Lake Superior.

Norgoma is still in limbo. 

The 1943 Mississagi is disappearing piece by piece. She last appeared intact on this blog here

This is my first time to post a photo of the 1976 Block.

Buckthorn heads up into Superior.


It’s active season on the Lakes, and Edgar B. Speer and all the others shuttle their contribution to the millions of tons of cargo per year.

Is she the only laker with this design of self-unloader?

Nokomis takes sightseers through the McArthur. 

And someone’s taking a break from the galley of Walter J, 

as they head for Superior.

All photos, any errors, WVD.


Let’s start with Poverty Island . . . and the light considered the US most endangered lighthouse.

Candace Elise used to operate as Stephen Dann.

Manitowoc makes its way west into Lake Michigan. 

Buckthorn backs out of Mackinac Island and heads for Lake Superior.

In a short time, two footers passed by:   American Integrity headed west. 

Corsair brought in the hay and flowers . .  for horses and bees maybe.

Burns Harbor made its way back up to Superior.   Burns and Integrity are two of the 13 “footers” working on the upper Lakes.

John D. Leitch has an unmistakeable profile.

Two more “footers” awaited us before we got to Sugar Island.


That’s Sugar Islander II in between the two boats, and that’s where we’ll start next post.


I love the hanging benches and bicycle on the balconies of American Century. 

All photos and any errors, WVD.

The LL2 designation will mean the second hitch, one that began and will end in Chicago.  

North of Navy Pier, jetty work was ongoing at the same time–holiday weekend–as a group sail or race.

David R. Shanock (ex-HA Walker),launched 1978, delivers a scow, with rock, I believe. 

The newly repainted but still coal-burning Badger took our stern. I take from this article that she will burn coal until the next fuel source is adopted.

Work has begun on Biscayne Bay, now that she’s up in the dry dock. 

The real excitement for me came when I witnessed a drill going on. 

Call it lower away, perform the needed maneuvers, and then haul it back into its davits.



All photos, any errors, WVD.

Is that really USS Cole (DDG 67)?

I’ve not seen it mentioned much in media coverage today.

Ocean survey vessel HMS Scott (H131) and why the 

penguin?  Answer follows.


USS Oak Hill (LSD 51), a dock landing ship is named after a former president’s residence!

ITS Virginio Fasan (F 591) is an Italian frigate.  Click here for the namesake.

USCGC Warren Deyampert (WPC-1151) has a quite interesting namesake story.

Deyampert and Ollis meet

HMCS Glace Bay (MM 701) is a Canadian coastal defence vessel, as spelled in Canadian English.

 USS Wasp (LHD-1) history can be read here.

Is that a Harrier AV-8B?


USNS Newport (T-EPF-12) can transport over 300 troops at almost 50 mph.

I’d love to tour it.


All photos this morning, WVD.

OK, H131 is named for RF Scott, the explorer.

As remnants of  Hurricane Nicole pass through the sixth boro, we might have a look back to details of aftermath of Sandy exactly 10 years ago, like this undecked pier over on the NJ side of the Arthur Kill, across from Howland Hook. 

USCGC Spencer came up for the cleanup, as did

then-USCGC Gallatin, now NNS Okpabana

NASA’s Enterprise saw some damage as well, leading to installation of a more robust pavilion

McAllister Sisters assisted ACL Atlantic Concert past the damage to the park shoreline just west of St. George while  

National Guard units staged in the then parking lot area. 

And I have to digress here to rant about a shoreside issue:  hundreds of millions have been spent in preparing this area for the ill-fated “NY Wheel,”  and in the process transformed what had been a simple but pleasant park into a wasteland behind an unsightly green wall and guarded chain link.  Hey mister mayor and mister SI boro president, clean it up and reopen it for the public.  The “wheeler-dealers” and the NYC EDC did more damage here–and allowed it to fester–than Sandy.  Is the small wheel next?

APL Cyprine, then flagged US and carrying USMC vehicles, has gone to Alang flying the flag of Comoros. Ditto ACL Atlantic Concert, shown up the column. 

Patrick Sky was still working back then, and Happy Delta brought in one of the first loads of NYC sanitation cranes. 

That year, by November 9–the date of this photo–we’d already had a dusting of cold, white stuff here. 

Cashman’s TSHD Atchafalaya was in the boro.  She’s still afloat in Florida. 

On black Friday 2012, the high point of my day was seeing Atlantic Salvor return to the boro with Witte 1407 carrying segments of what is visible today as

the antenna atop WTC 1. 

All photos, any opinions and all errors, WVD. 


Ida Lewis, Anthony Petit, Katherine Walker, and Joshua Appleby . . .  what might they all have in common?  Which is the outlier here?  Follow me but first check out this link to a tugster blog post from 2009.

As we head into the dark months, let’s start with some bright photos from Florida in midsummer, photos I took on the jaunt from Port of Iberia LA to Tampa.

WLM 556 was in the process of servicing buoys in the vast expanse of Tampa Bay,


Because the bay is shallow except in the channel, we passed fairly nearby.

I wish now I’d gotten a shot of the text on the crane:  it reads “the wrecking keeper.”  The government had accused Joshua Appleby of being a pirate before changing course after lacking evidence and naming him keeper of a lighthouse west of Key West. It reminds me of the story of Capt. Dan Seavey, who went from being a pirate to a US Marshal.

The sixth boro’s WLM has an inspiring but less roguish namesake . . . Katherine Walker. 

Last week I caught WLM 552 running a load of summer buoys

it had (I believe by the numbers) swapped out from upriver.

USCGC Ida Lewis, the first of the class all built in a Wisconsin Lake Michigan port, bears the text “mother of all keepers,” as she is WLM 551.  If Appleby and Walker had interesting bios, then consider the Lewis story here

All photos of three of 14 WLMs, WVD, who thinks the names of this class of USCGC are all well chosen.  If you need some inspiration, google all the unfamiliar ones here

The outlier fro the list above?  Anthony Petit.  To see that WLM, I’d have to travel to Alaska, which is not such a bad idea now that I think of it. 

Here was the post I’d planned for yesterday, put together in a moment when I thought a single focus was too elusive, random scenes, like a container ship anchored off Stapleton, elusive detail in a set all diverging from usual patterns. 

Or seeing a Mein Schiff vessel in town after a hiatus… with Wye River passing along her stern?

Or this bayou boat discovering it offers solutions all over the boro and beyond, here passing a lifting machine?

How about this speedboat chasing a tugboat, or appearing to, with lots of hulls in the distance?

Or a single terrapin crawling out of the surf in a non-bulkheaded margin of the wet boro?

Two pink ONEs at Global terminal?

A ketch named Libra or Libre heading south with a scrap ship at Claremont?

Two commercial vessels out at Bayonne?

Two Ellens?

And finally two elongated RIBs with

camouflage-clad Coasties aboard?

All photos, seen as slight deviants from existing patterns, WVD.


I had a different post and an entirely different morning planned, until I looked at AIS, and saw that after almost exactly four years, Big Lizzie (HMS Ro8) was inbound.  So whose was this when 

these were coming into view?

More specifics in the link above the first photo, but check out the info here

“But sir, I’ve been fighting this trophy striper . . . !”


Notice Stockham (T-AK-3017) in the distance?


Why eight?

Danmark, owned by the Danish Maritime Authority,  is simply called that;  although a naval training ship, it does not go by Margrethe II.   More photos of Danmark appeared own this blog earlier this week. 


Note a second helicopter now?


Wednesday and Thursday the “Atlantic Future Forum” will occur no doubt right  there. 

Kirby has the stern as they Ro8 enters the nUpper Bay.

HMS Richmond (F239) escorts Queen Elizabeth in. 

All photos, any errors, WVD.


Danmark, a 90-year-old full-rigged ship, is in town again.  She first came here in 1939 for the World’s Fair.

South Street waterfront of Manhattan then was a very different place, as of course was the whole city and world.

I’m not sure where she berthed back then.  A year later, after her homeland was invaded, she stayed in the US (Jacksonville FL for starters) because she had no homeport to return to.  In 1942, she was temporarily commissioned as a USCG vessel.

The brightwork is impeccable, as

is the gilt work.

Rigging like this is dense as a jungle, yet it’s all functional. 

And many of the current crew of Danish cadets, four of whom are mostly hidden but busy in the image below, 

were busy polishing the brass.

I’d love to see how the figurehead is polished. This figurehead has appeared on this blog once before back in 2007.  To see Danmark underway sail-powered, click here.   For a guided tour of the ship, click here

Meanwhile, I recently spotted another sailing vessel, one I’d not seen before, S/V Red Sea.  Thanks to Michele McMurrow and Jaap Van Dorp for the identification, although they called it by different names, they were both right.  For some backstory on this well-traveled schooner, click here

She’s arrived in the sixth boro from the Wisconsin side of Lake Michigan.


Some Danmark photos, thanks to Tony A;  all others, WVD.  Enjoy the last day of summer 2022.


Sometimes you need a spell out of the routine to spawn new ideas.  My long sweltering time in the GOM this summer communing with alligators and sugar cane may have had that effect.  In this case, the “new” idea–as it often is–is to go back to an old idea, but twist it in a new way.  I started “non-random” tugs way back in 2009 here.   I’d done a variation on this actually two years earlier with the “bronze” fleet and here and here.  There have been others too, but I think you catch my drift.

So let’s go.  Between my two stints in the torrid GOM, I was hoping to catch a photo of one of the sixth boro’s “newest” names, Brinn Courtney.  Below is closest I got, and it was certainly a photo I’d not run without context. 

After returning, I caught John Joseph–when i first saw it in the distance I thought it was the elusive Brinn Courtney.

A short time later, I saw it in formation with USCGC Willow, although I wasn’t sure if John Joseph was escorting Willow, or vice versa.

A few days later, I caught John Joseph on the move again.

Imagine my joy then to catch Brinn Courtney twice yesterday, once pushing a barge and then


All photos, WVD.  More fleet sets to come.

More past sets can be seen here and here and here

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