You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Choptank’ tag.

Here are previous installments, and I’m just observing in this post;  although most vessels I see have intact coatings, others really need a trip to the shipyard for some paint.

The stern of Maersk Columbus was fine, but the bow had some extraordinary streaks of rust.

Cosco Istanbul had some

need of some work generally all over.

Ditto this Zim ship.

The surprise was this tugboat, Choptank,

this time on the stern.

Again . . . just observing and taking these photos, WVD.


Clio came into the sixth boro carrying “mineral fuel” cargo and a thick coating of sea ice.  I’m not sure where she arrived from, but six months ago, she was in some unambiguously hot places, sans ice.

JRT had a band of icelets,

Choptank carried souvenirs of her time upriver where more fresh water flowed,

but Margaret takes the prize with the jagged hang-downs.

C. F. Campbell had ice stalactites yet not nearly enough given her port of registry.  She has been in the sixth boro for a bit over a half year now.

Cold winters . . . they’re good for a lot of reasons . . .even for plants.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

I’m rushing December, but I’m eager to get through winter and back to spring.  All photos here date from December 2008.

Bowsprite took this from one of her cliff niches:  June K (2003) here is moving the Floating Hospital  (1974, Blount) up to the Rondout, where she remains. Is she really now called Industria at Sea.

The geography is unchanged, but McAllister Responder (1967) is no longer in the sixth boro, and Sea Venture (1972) is dead and likely scrapped . . . .

Maryland (1962) has become Liz Vinik, after operating with Maryland in the name for more than a handful of companies.

Choptank (2006) is back in the sixth boro and environs.  My autocorrect always wants to call this tug Shoptalk.  Puzzling.  NYK Daedalus (2007) is still at work, just not here.  TEN Andromeda is still on the oceans as well, still transporting crude.

Now called Charly and working the Gulf of Guinea, Janice Ann Reinauer (1967) used to be a personal icon in the sixth boro. Note that 1 World Trade does not appear in this photo, as it would today.

Closing this out . . .  Margaret Moran (1979 and the 4th boat by that name) passes APL Jade (1995 and likely scrapped by now) in the KVK.

I’m hoping you’re enjoying this glances back a decade as much as I am.

With the exception of the first photo, all these by Will Van Dorp, who alone is responsible for research errors.

Unrelated:  Win a trip on a Great Lakes freighter/laker here.

It’s been a few months to do a sixth-boro look around here.  Of course it’s never the same.  Never. Not even from one day to the next.  Let’s start with Weeks tug Elizabeth.  If I’m not mistaken, this machine’s carried that name ever since it was launched in 1984.

James William has been a regular in the sixth boro the past five years or so, but she started  as a Moran tug in 2007.   Note the eerie fog around the base of the Staten Island-side bridge tower.

Choptank [which the pesky auto-correct insists should be spelled Shoptalk] passes in the foreground;  Mary H in the distance. Choptank is back from several years in the Caribbean.

Paula Atwell is almost 20 years old, having started out as Crosby Express.

Northstar Integrity . . . quite the mouthful of syllables . . . seemed an unknown to me, until I realized I knew her as Petrel . . .

Not long ago I caught Marjorie at work on the Hudson down bound.

Mary Gellatly emerges from the fog.

Evening Star rests B. No. 250 at anchor with Brooklyn in the background.

Mister T heads for the mooring . . .

All sixth boro photos by Will Van Dorp, who has a backlog of so many collaboration photos that I might be alternating much-appreciated “other peoples photos” posts for a while.



It’s still November 2015, so for me, it’s day 22 of this focus.

Let’s head south again from Hampton Roads, where a lineup of MSC vessels includes a supply vessel called Supply.


I guess this would be a small Navy yard tug.  Click here (and scroll) to see a variant with roll bars.   Here it closes the security gate after a Moran tug has come inside.


More security is provided by WPB-87329 Cochito.


In order from near to far on this foggy day are LSD-46 Tortuga, DDG-103 Truxton, and USNS T-AH-20 Comfort.


Emily Anne McAllister (2003) waits at the Norfolk International Terminals.




And there’s a long list of commercial tugboats, more than I want to squeeze into this post.  So let’s start with Ocean Endeavor (1966),


Night Hawk (1981),




Dauntless II (1953),


Choptank (2006),


Payton Grace Moran (2015),


Goose Creek (1981), and finally for now


Steven McAllister (1963).


All foggy/rainy photos above by Will Van Dorp.

One of these days we’ll meander farther south on the Elizabeth River aka ICW.  In the meantime, if you have photos of work vessels from any port huge or tiny, get in touch;  there are still a few days of November left.

And since we’re a week or so from December, my idea for next month’s collaboration is “antique/classic” workboats, functioning or wrecked.  Of course, a definition for that category is impossible.  For example, NewYorkBoater says this:  “The definition of an antique boat according to Antique and Classic Boating Society is a boat built between 1919 and 1942.  A classic was built between 1943 and 1975 and the term contemporary, are boats built from 1976 and on.”  Hmm . . . what do you call an old vessel built before 1919 . . . a restoration project?  antediluvian?


If you take another transportation sector–automobiles, you get another definition:  25 years old or more.    And for the great race, here were the rules for this year:  “Vehicle entries must have been manufactured in 1972 or before.”  Next year’s cut-off will likely be 1973.

So my flexible definition is  . . . photo should have been taken in 1999 or before, by you or of you or a family member, and in the case of a wreck, probably identifiable.  Exception . . .  it could be a boat built before  . . . say  . . . 1965.

Colleen basks in early morning light before the race earlier this month.

Resolute makes a quick turn to assist with a tow.

Discovery Coast turns westbound into the KVK.

Resolute takes the stern of Thomas J. Brown.

Miriam Moran reports for yet another job.

The inimitable Herbert P. Brake leaves the east end of the Kill.

Laura K. Moran . . .  speed turning.

Taurus heads for the mooring.

Treasure Coast crosses in the foreground after Taurus  gets to the mooring.

Discovery Coast cruises back to home base.

It’s Choptank light about to cross the Upper Bay for Brooklyn, and

a whole bevvy of McAllisters, including Helen. in Mariner’s Harbor . . .  also just before the tugboat race almost three weeks ago.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who does a short gallivant starting later tomorrow.

Little toot surely!  And what might she be dragging along?  Answer at end of the post.

A new sighting for me . . . Kathleen (1975).

Jill Reinauer (ex-Ranger 1967).

Amy C McAllister (ex-Jane A. Bouchard, 1975) with Ellen (1966) and MOL Innovation (1996) in the background.

Choptank (2006).  And what is that dour yellow in the background?

Evening Tide (1970).

Another shot of Ellen escorting in MOL Innovation.  MOL vessels are named for great abstract qualities like Vigor, Vision, Confidence, and –as seen here a little over a week ago–Efficiency.  I’m wondering why the single-deep stack of containers occupies the starboard sternmost corner.

Lil Toot is Tommy Miller dragging in Lady Ashley of Cliffside Park.  I’ve no clue about the make or vintage of Lady Ashley, but I suppose it’s impolite to ask a lady her age.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp within a shot hour and a half Saturday morning.



Choptank . . .


Nanticoke again . . .


Wye River . . . though it looks the same as Nanticoke and Choptank.


Christiana . . . is in a different class, for Vane, although she looks a lot like a certain Reinauer.


Chesapeake . . . thought it could be –at least to my eye– either Wye River, Choptank, or Nanticoke.


Wye River . . . although it could be Chesapeake with nameboards switched?? [No, there’s a slight window difference in the wheelhouse.]


The nameboards say Wicomico.


Wicomico again.


Wicomico a third time, passing what  looks like Charles D. McAllister.


Patapsco, according to the nameboards.


Brandywine is a twin of Christiana.  At 6000 hp, they’re a smidgeon less than 1/3 more hp than the Patapsco class.

aaaav15Back to the Patapsco class, it’s Bohemia.

aaaav15bOf that class, I’ve yet to see Patuxent, Anacostia, and Severn.

Has there ever been another company that had 15 identical (are there nuances I’ve missed??) tugboats?  And on the Patapsco class, why does the forward companionway lead starboard rather than port?

All fotos . . . Will Van Dorp.

I encountered the word “Choptank” some years back in James Michener’s novel Chesapeake.  Although no doubt a poor approximation of the native Nanticoke name of the river, in English it’s delightfully evocative.  I’m wondering what fun by way of creative word derivation people learning this name have had.  Anyhow, I was thrilled last summer to see the name of this tug, figuring out that this whole class of tug is named for rivers in the Chesapeake watershed.


Above Choptank heads south in the Arthur Kill, and below, it’s southbound past West Point about two months ago.


Here a light Choptank steams past heavy traffic at Howland Hook, and


last shot Choptank eastbound in KVK moves a light barge on the hip.


More Patapsco class vessels soon.  Vane Brothers have 15 of this class already, which makes me wonder how many more named streams flow into the Chesapeake?

Photos, WVD.

A mentor in Vermont researches sasquatch legends in the ravines of the Green Mountains.  Sasquatch did not come to mind last week when I espied this figure atop a Hudson cliff; rather I thought of ghosts or at least a Washington Irving mountainman of the sort that bedeviled my ancestor Rip van Winkle‘s head with fuddling rum.


Upriver a bend, I identified the figure:  a painter, one of a long tradition along the Hudson.  What could he possible wish to capture on his canvas?


Chesapeake and a light barge passing Storm King, and


Champion Polar of Bergen, which must surely be southbound from Henry’s Northwest Passage, and


Choptank, here cranking through Hudson Highlands and World’s End.


Maybe the artist was doing a series of peaks starting with Anthony’s Nose at Bear Mountain Bridge.


What if the proverbial “bear” for which the bridge is named was larger than a human, very hairy, and primitive?   And who was Anthony?  I’ll answer that last question later.

Photos, WVD.

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