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The water and its edges are good places to see birds;  that’s the origin of this series.

The next six photos were taken in August 1997, almost 25 years ago.  I post them now because I recently learned some new info, which pertains to the gentleman in brown (driving the boat and bearded and sunglasses) and his father, carrying the umbrella and US flag in the next photo, who claimed to own the island where we landed.  Look at the photo and get a sense of where I might have been that day back in August 1997.

The building to the left is a lighthouse. The anchored boat above and the flag are clues.  Where is this?

Yup, that’s me in a dark blind peering through an opening at . . .

puffins,

 

literally thousands of puffins.  In those days I had a film camera, as did everyone, with very little if any zoom.   I say that to underscore the fact that the puffins were on the rocks just beyond the blind.  More on this place and my guides at the end of this post. 

If you do FB, you may have seen this photo before, a young Cooper’s hawk.  I took the photo on Long Island.    Yes, it was tormenting a backyard bird feeder, which is how I saw it after it buzzed the feeder at speeds I’d seen no other bird flying.

Recently along the KVK, this heron landed quite close to me.  It may have confused my cold, motionless form for driftwood along the shore there. Note the black crown and head plumes.

The specialized chest feathers seem almost like a cape here.

After several minutes of sitting near me, it raised its wings

and flew over to the Bayonne side…  for better prey on the other side of the river, I suppose.

So here’s the puffin story.  The boat was then called Chief.  The owners stressed that it’d never been fished, and it was the conveyance by a puffin tour operated out of Jonesport ME by the Norton family–Barna with the beflagged umbrella and his son John driving the tender.   The island is Machias Seal Island, a disputed “grey zone” US or Canadian territory.  When I took the trip, Barna Norton, then 82 years old, said with utmost confidence that he owned the island, having inherited it by virtue of having been the first descendant of lobsterman “big” Barney Beal to bear his name.  John, Barna’s son, was mostly quiet on the trip, leaving his long-winded but fascinating father to tell all the tales . .  the helicopter incident, the dead terns, his 6’7″ namesake, and more.  If you never read links on this blog, you must read this one . . . with the title of “The Man who went to war with Canada,” that man being Barna Norton.

A story not in the linked article that I remember relates to Barna’s son, John, again told by Barna.  A border enforcer against all comers, John was noted in the USCG days in Alaska as having boarded a Russian fishing trawler at gunpoint to inform the captain of that vessel that they had been fishing in undisputed US waters. 

All photos, WVD, who can’t vouch that tours on the island now via Barbara Frost, which might be Chief under new ownership, would be a Barna value-added added puffin tour, but the puffins (and their chainsaw-like sounds in a rookery) are a real treat.  That link has a recording of one;  imagine about 3000 puffins making that sound simultaneously.

 

In July 2010, the 1968 Black Hawk was one of two sister tugs operated by Sound Freight Lines.  Since then, the sister Seminole has been sold foreign, and Black Hawk has been sold to Sause Brothers Ocean Towing.  Sause refurbished her and for an account of Black Hawk towing a barge from San Francisco to Vancouver, click here. Details on Black Hawk are 112′ x 34′ and 3700 hp.

Chief, 1999, is/was one of Crowley’s Harbor class tugs.  She’s 97′ x 36′ and 4800 hp.

James T. Quigg is no doubt now wearing Centerline Logistics colors.  She dates from 1971 and measures in at 98′ x 30′ and 3000 hp.   Since launch, she’s worked the US East Coast, once called Fournier Boys,  and Hawaii, as well as the West Coast.

Alaska Titan came off the ways in 2008.  She’s one of a half dozen “titans” operated by Western Towboat.

Currently following the waterway through the islands of the Alaska panhandle, she measures in at 112′ x 35′ and 5000 hp.

Westrac, 1987, is another Western Towboat vessel, measuring in at 63′ x 28′ and 2500 hp.

This Triton, launched 1965, now goes by Wycliffe.  She’s 115′ x 31′ and 2500 hp.   She’s currently in Ensenada MX.

Dixie, 1951, has a history in towing log rafts on the Columbia River hundreds of miles above Portland OR. She’s 46′ x 15′ and 575 hp.

Pacific Star, launched 2008, now goes by Signet Courageous.  She’s 92′ x 40′ and 6610 hp. She’s currently in the Gulf of Mexico off Corpus Christi.

On Lake Washington, Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain were out sailing.  The two vessels are now outside the Puget Sound in Gray’s Harbor, and Hawaiian Chieftain, as I understand it, has been “laid up.”  The two replica vessels have a waterline length of 72’and 62′, respectively.

Island Packer puzzles me a bit.  It seems not be cost effective to operate the 1943 converted landing craft between here and the Aleutians, where Chernofsky is located.  I suppose it was in Seattle that day for service.  I don’t know.

Katie Ann, launched in Baltimore in 1969, almost 300′ loa and powered by 8000 hp,  is one of six processing/packing/freezing vessels operated by American Seafoods.  She operates with a crew of 75.  As of this writing, according to AIS, she’s in exactly the same location I photographed her in July 2010, but only because she’s between seasons.

Viking has the lines of a converted oiler, like these.  She could be the 120′ crabber/trawler built for crabbing/fishing by Marco in 1975.

All photos, WVD, in July 2010.

 

 

Over the past few years, John Jedrlinic aka “Jed” has shared a lot of photos he’s taken near Norfolk, which is great since otherwise I’d never have seen some of these.  Take Huntington, below, apparently the in-house tug of the shipyard in Newport News.

photo date 19 APRIL 2010

photo date 19 APRIL 2010

Or McAllister Boys, I’ve no idea which foreign port she works out of today.

PHOTO DATE 19 april 2010

PHOTO DATE 19 april 2010

And Russel B. Murray.  Express Marine units used to be common in the sixth boro, but no more.

photo date 16 MARCH 2010

photo date 16 MARCH 2010

Russel B. Murray used to work in New York the year I was born  . . . then called Shamokin

photo date 16 MARCH 2010

photo date 16 MARCH 2010

I did see Night Hawk several times on the Elizabeth River in Fall 2015.

photo date 10 SEPT 2011

photo date 10 SEPT 2011

Chief is now Dann Marine’s Diamond Coast, but I’ve not yet seen her.

photo date 8 FEB 2011

photo date 8 FEB 2011

And finally, a former regular in the sixth boro, Lucinda Smith.  See her here in the KVK in 2011.

photo date 16 MARCH 2010

photo date 16 MARCH 2010

All photos here were taken by Jed.  Thanks.

This follows the post where I got to spend four times as long on Long Island Sound, a truly remarkable place.  The trip last week brought sights and surprises enough to warrant a repeat trip soon.  Here, a bait boat (?) passes a renowned Plum Island facility.  Back to this later in the post.

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We’re headed to New London, the name of this RORO/WOWO.

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Here Marjorie McAllister tows RTC 60 past Little Gull Light.

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The only house on Hobbs Island in Groton needed to have a story, and I found one when I learned it was built by the Hays family, who wrote this book a friend gave me for my 45th birthday.

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Here Mary Ellen departs New London for Orient Point, passing New London Light.

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Amistad awaits, for sale at the dock.

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Sea Jet  . . . takes on passengers for Block Island, a place I need to visit soon.

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Since our destination was Blount for the wind farm vessel ribbon cutting, I wanted to get a photo of the newly launched replacement for Capt. Log.   Click here to see the plans and specs.

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Chandra B, coming to the sixth boro soon.

At the dock just south of the I-95 bridge, it’s 100′ scalloper Chief, also for sale.

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Electric Boat 2 does patrols around the pens,

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which enclose a submarine.  Now look closely at the tail vertical stabilizer.  Now look at the one in this “news” story about a submarine getting stuck in Shinnecock Canal.  If not the same sub, then it’s at least the same type.

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But if you start thinking about it, Dan’s is having way too much fun.  This story and this one are clearly boaxes, spoofs about boats.  When I heard the story about Shinecock, I thought maybe the Hamptons PD had gotten ahold of this one, which I spotted on the North fork just a few summer months ago.

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Heading back across to Orient Point, you can line up New London Ledge Light with Race Rock Light, in the distance.   Tours for Ledge are available in the summer, when the ghost is around.

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On a leg between Newport and Oyster Bay, it’s KnickerbockerWisconsin-built by a shipyard that started out doing fish tugs!  If you’re not familiar with fish tugs–of which Urger was one–go to Harvey Hadland‘s site.

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Now here, back near Plum Island, is a surprise.  I figured it was a fishing party boat, but Justin suggested otherwise, and indeed he was right.  M. S. Shahan II IS a government boat, owned by Department of Homeland Security!!

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And a final shot of Plum Island just before we return to the Orient Point dock, of course, it’s Cape Henlopen, former USS LST 510

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By the way, I am still looking for folks with connection to this vessel as LST-510.

All photos here by Will Van Dorp.

 

Click here for an account of gallivants in and around Ocracoke and Hatteras Inlets as well as my connection to these waters.  Beaufort Inlet–near Cape Lookout–is scheduled for some depth maintenance these days with Marinex Construction excavating what McFarland count not extract.  Katherine Weeks enters the inlet from sea with a light scow.

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The only USACE presence I saw was Snell.  USACE awarded Marinex the contract to subtract a half million tons of sand from beneath these waves.

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I believe this is cutterhead/pipleine dredge Savannah, connected by pipeline to this

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scow and loading equipment.

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When Katherine tows the loaded scow out–here past Sea Quest II, a dive boat (more on that later)

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Na Hoku-formerly a K-Sea vessel

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tails.  The Sea Knight helicopter

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just happened overhead.  I’d love the view from a helicopter here.

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Once through the narrow inlet, Katherine heads out for the dumping area and Na Hoku returns to its holding station.

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Who knew the inlet could be this busy . . . l to r:  Grace Moran, Aurora, Na Hoku, and Salamina1.  More on the last one on that list tomorrow.   Aurora, listed as a sulphur carrier, carries PotashCorp colors.

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Potash Corp has their big mine about 35 miles from here, as the pelicans fly.

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Chief is clearly a Marinex tug.

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I’m not sure the ID of the inbound vessel here passing Chief, here heading out to the dredge.

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I can’t say for certain about that dive boat early on and whether the divers had been on Queen Anne’s Revenge, but there’ve been lots of salvage activity around the Inlet in recent days.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

I’d seen McFarland before . . . once at the dock stern out and another time anchored in the middle of the night on Delaware Bay, lit up like a parking lot.  I’m so thrilled that I’ll run a series of her . . . .starting with the USACE dredge passing Pac Alnath.

A first sighting for me . . . Charles Burton.

Back to McFarland . . . one of four ocean-going hopper dredges operated by the USACE.  Can you name the other three?

. . . Nanticoke and Peter F. Gellatly, both pushing Vane barges.

Huge turntable on McFarland.

Chief . . . I believe the 1979 built vesel.

From this USACE publication, I like this statistic:  a full load of dredged materials McFarland carries equals the capacity of 310 dump trucks.

Just before sunrise, she steamed by . . . and passed B. Franklin Reinauer in the city of Benjamin Franklin himself.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

The other three dredges are Wheeler, Essayons, and Yaquina.   For comparison info about the four, click here.  For Bert Visser’s directory with fotos of all the large dredgers in the world, click here.

For a post on Delaware River tugs from 2010, click here.  What I’d like to see one of these days is the loading of livestock down in Wilmington.    Currently, Falconia is at the dock;  I saw her from the highway on Friday.

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