I have one more LL set, which I’ll post soon, but I first wanted to observe a connection between Eastport ME and Escanaba MI.  Back in April, I was issued travel docs to get to Eastport via Toronto and Saint John NB, which meant a re-entry at St Stephen/Calais.  Since I met up with others at the Saint John airport and we all were crossing in the same van, we were all asked to step into the CBP office for further scrutiny.  Of course, our travel, though circuitous, was legit and we were sent on our way, but that was after some CBP expressed skepticism about a cruise ship being in Eastport.

As it turns out, Eastport, as the deepest eastern US port, it has seen recent cruise ships and was once the 2nd busiest port in the US!  I quote from the second link in the previous sentence:  “

Passengers traveling to and from Boston and Saint John, New Brunswick, came by packed schooners and then crowded steamships, French said. Larger steamships soon made multiple stops in the city each week, carrying hundreds of people at a time. 

In 1876, Eastport launched the North American sardine industry, totaling 18 canning factories along its shores within a decade. The arrival of the railroad to Eastport in 1898 caused the port to further flourish as goods and passengers gained new access to the country’s rail network. As it did, the city’s population reached its peak at just over 5,000. 

Following the invention and spread of the automobile in the early 20th century, the massive steamships fell out of popularity, and in 1933 stopped coming to Eastport altogether.”

For specifics on steamers that once called in Eastport, check this johnwood1946 link.

As I get to the connection between Eastport and Escanaba, let me digress with the next two photos:  it’s Viking Polaris, the newest cruise ship on the Great Lakes, waiting for us to pass at Côte Ste. Catherine in the South Shore Canal portion of the Saint Lawrence Seaway.

Bow above by a friend and stern . . . my photo.

This brings us a week later and over 1000 nm farther west to Escanaba MI and

this warm welcome.

I was told by two unrelated folks in town that we were the first passenger vessel to call in Escanaba in over a half century.  Of course, that triggered me to wonder what the previous vessel was.  The archivist at the local county historical society was very prompt in responding to my Q, writing… “During the later 1940s and the 1950s both SS North American and SS South American made stops in Escanaba.  The boats docked at the municipal dock at that time, and passengers (as many as 400) walked across the park to the old House of Ludington Hotel for lunch, followed by strolling around the city.  I do have photos of one of the boats at the dock.  Many older adults who were young folks at the time remember that the passengers threw coins into the water and kids dove off the dock for them.  (Those stories always give me a ‘third world’ feeling.)”

Phenomenal!  I know of the two American ships and their ignominious end.  It also gave me pause to think we were following in the wake of these two fine vessels produced by GLEW!

Here’s some info about Escanaba’s Sand Point Light, which I’ll be sure to visit later this season.  Another stop will be House of Ludington.  To be acknowledged but now long gone is also Sialia

Many thanks to Karen Lindquist, archivist, for the info about Escanaba and its previous visitors.  

All photos, unless otherwise stated, and any errors, WVD


Let’s start with a 1000-footer, MV Burns Harbor.  For all the particulars, click here

I’m amazed that someone would approach to that point in a kayak.



Fishing anyone?

After we’d crossed over in Lake Michigan, 

we passed James R. Barker.  For her particulars, click here


Both Burns and Barker are among the largest.

Twelve hours later, we entered Escanaba MI, and the Basic yard, or at least used to be that. 

Biscayne Bay awaited the dry dock.

And Nickelena stood by for its next job.

Siscowet is named for an indigenous trout, but that’s all I know. 

Greenstone is intriguing.

I don’t know the story here, but there is only some resemblance to a Point-class USCGC.  Maybe I’m missing something else entirely.

All photos, any errors, WVD, who could do a whole other post about Escanaba.

Onward we go, even if I’ve lagged a bit behind our actual wake.  I’ll reprise this account to fill in after I’m back on shore and enjoying fast  . . . everything.  It was after 2000 that we passed the water intake on Wednesday.

Ten minutes later the sun touched the waters to the west.

Nine hours later we passed this McKeil tanker as we were upbound in the approach to the Detroit River. 

The new Gordie Howe Bridge rises high about Zug Island steel works.

A bit blurred because I had to shoot through a port light . . . it’s Tenacious, a 1960-built veteran.

Later I caught Gott, Edwin H. down bound on the Detroit River. 

As I watched, the crewman lowered a bucket to crew on M S Westcott, exchanging mail or maybe Grey Poupon.

As darkness overcame us again, Iver Bright passed down bound.

The following sunrise found us on a track paralleling the US/CA border, well east of down bound traffic.

American Mariner greeted us as we approached our destination, Mackinac.


Welcome, back.

All photos, minimal commentary as I write this from Lake Michigan, WVD.

Algoma Mariner stops briefly before proceeding upbound.

CSL Tadoussac slides by. 

St Marys Cement II gets pushed through 

by Sea Eagle II.

Algoberta moves toward lock W8.

Manistee I’ll watch get dismantled over the course of the summer. 

Sunrise over Lake Erie from about an hour NE of Cleveland.

Sam Laud discharges cargo at lakefront.

ST-911 Enduring Freedom heads out to a jetty job.


UAL Fortitude transfers cargo near the container portion of the Cleveland port. 

All photos, any errors, WVD


Another quick one . . .   starting with Toronto in the rear view.

Gaia Desgagnes passes as we wait outside the entrance the the Welland.

Once Spartan departs lock 1,

we head in.

Burch Nash waits outside Heddle Shipyard on the Canal. 

Tim S Dool takes the inside wall to line up on lock 3.

At Port Colborne, CSL Tadoussac heads toward lock 8.

All photos, any errors, WVD, who has more photos but no more time.


Another quick post.  Names are here:  Theodore alias Pierre Marcotte.

Oceanex Connaigra.

Newbuild Seaway Trident under a setting moon.

Poetry in the wires.

Mia Desgagnes

Isabelle G

Seaway Joan going to a job

Seaway Pilot V

Fans of Wolfe Island.

Gliding past Toronto Islands and into 

Toronto at daybreak, where Amy Lynn D is docked.

All photos and any errors, WVD.

This post encompasses two legs, but WiFi has not been cooperative.

Minimal comment:  this is the eight-mile Confederation Bridge.  Toll to cross by car:  $CD 50.

Bridge Lady is pilot boat to retrieve the pilot who departed with us at Charlottetown.

After a rough passage north along the Gaspé coastline, we enter the lower estuary, where a cold welcome awaited. 

Near Les Éboulements aka “the landslides,” this tug Felicia still adorns the shore.

From the ferry dock near there, Svanoy shuttled over to  Isle aux Coudres. 

As we approached the end of that first leg at QC, Ocean Guide came by to exchange pilots.

Kitikmeot W, Nordic Orion, and Spruceglen were in port.

as were the two powerhouses, Ocean Taiga and Ocean Tundra.

Departing I had my first opportunity to see Vincent Massey Four years ago she was undergoing transformation here.

Torm Timothy headed for sea.

A pilot exchange happened just downstream from Montreal, 

where Uhl Fast was in port.

All photos, any errors, WVD.

Departing Halifax, we passed CMA CGM Osiris, no doubt making the sixth boro its next stop. 

Heading NE from Halifax, we had fabulous weather following the NS coastline and seeing fish boats like this one, Chief Stephen J. Gleade Sr., if I’ve read that right. 

Turning in at the point in Canso, we meet Strait Falcon.

CCGC Kopit Hopson was anchored off the shore.  Check out this information about this vessel’s name. 

Seaways Colorado is moored at Point Tupper, 

where Svitzer Bedford, Montreal, and Chebucto stand by. 

Rt. Hon. Paul E. Martin loads where Alice used to.

It was fantastic to see my friend Jack Ronalds, photographer who casts a long shadow,  doing what he does, photographing passing vessels.  See Jack’s previous contributions to this blog here

Strait Raven tows a work barge away from the causeway.

Before sunrise, pilot boat JRG delivered a pilot.

Later, when we tied up, she was at the dock, accompanied by 

Mr. Ben, a Coastal Stevedoring vessel.

All photos, any errors, WVD, who’s Great Lakes bound.


Not much to report on the passage  . . . the watery parts of the planet have all the same moods, but as we approached Halifax, Sambro Island Light to port, the locally built pilot boat E. T. Rogers brought a pilot and some excitement. 


Atlantic Cedar

and other boats prepared to welcome a ULCV that will make for the sixth boro after a port call in Halifax.  Scotia Pilot heads out to meet them.

Halifax Transit claims the title of oldest saltwater ferry in North America.

Atlantic Fir heads out for the ULCV.

It’s Nova Scotia . . . therefore a bag piper.

All photos, any errors, WVD.

You’ll understand if I say this is a wicked quick post.  Bear with me.  At the appointed hour, albeit Campobello time rather than Eastport time, we cast off and made for sea.

Once away from town, the pilot departed, back for the Eastport station aboard North Sea.

We rounded the light off the top of Campobello as a fishing boat worked the same area.  I wonder what the catch was. 

Making our way SW out of the Bay of Funky Funky Fundy (yes, that was an autocorrect 2X!) and into the Gulf of Maine, we passed Storm Rider.  Note the crewman looking our way between the house and the curtain on the stern deck. Yes, this song came to mind.

At daybreak this morning we took on a Portland pilot from Spring Point.

Ram Island Ledge Light, I presume.

I’ve lots of other lighthouse photos, but as we made fast, we were alongside the Portland McAllister fleet:  l to r, Roderick, Nancy, and Andrew

Heading into town for some supplies, I had to photograph this sign.

All photos, wicked fast, any errors because I’m too wicked fast, WVD.

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