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For some context, Road Fotos 2021 E left off in September here, and I’ve not caught up with road fotos for November.  But let’s jump ahead to December, and a trip we could start in New Iberia, about 150 miles west of New Orleans.  It was a reconnoitre, a gallivant to investigate what to spend more time on in a subsequent trip. More on that at the end of this post.

New Iberia is a low lying settlement, epicenter for the lift boat fleet.  Click here for an image taken after Hurricane Ike.

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From the raised deck of a lift boat, I had this perspective on a ship yard across the waterway.

Some lift boats are for sale, others–like Jane below–in the yard for inspections, and

and still others are being dismantled, scrapped, like

the one that has these lift motors removed and possibly in triage for either recycling or rehabbing.

Heading by car for open water at Cypremort, we passed this church on stilts.  With greater time, I’d love to attend a service here.  With more time, Louisiana black bears might be spotted here.

I’d have to be there on a Sunday morning at 0900.

Taking the trip slightly out of order, let me add this moody photo bowsprite took from a low bridge over Bayou Black.  A thousand more photos like this would have reduced travel speed to a saunter pace. 

Here the intrepid bowsprite is recording the mosses in the trees, maybe collecting some for a multitexture project.

Like I said, I have many more;  selecting is tough, like this old tree.

The road and bridge system across this whole Atchafalaya region, half the area of the state, is quite impressive. The rest of these photos are thanks to bowsprite.

I love the higher bridges on these roads when less trafficked because they provide high points, great for taking photos, like this of the GIWW and other waterways of Louisiana looking west and

this, looking east.  With an entire other lifetime, I’d love to travel and explore this all the only way possible, by boat.

You may have heard of the disposal of the RORO Golden Ray, the car carrier that capsized outside Brunswick GA;  final cutting up is happening here, and over by the cranes, what you’re looking at is slices of the ship at M. A. R. S., Modern American Recycling Services in Bayou Black.

High bridges also facilitate a view of the an industry I’d not known was so visible this area, sugar cane production.  In the lower half of the photo, that’s a newly planted cane field.

Swaths of cane of different stages of growth were everywhere. 

In the foregound is newly planted, and beyond the machinery, that’s a crop ready to harvest with

large tracked machines like this. To see these machines at work, click here.

In large transports like this, you see the chopped cane

heading for the refinery.  This one below–the Enterprise mill— in steamy operation near New Iberia is one of many.  Definitely, a return trip would involve seeking permission to see all steps in this process closer up. 

Photos by bowsprite when indicated.  All others, WVD, who believes that you only halfway smell the daisies on the first time to determine what to spend more time at if and when you return.

 

Timo Pajunen took this photo back in 2010.  Here are my questions for you:  whose livery?  what mission?  what was McArthur‘s original mission?  I’ll answer at the end of the post.

Charles Ritchie took this.  Hawk YTL-153 has fine pedigree:   in 1941, she was built and launched in Pearl Harbor and was present during the attack.  Since 1980, she’s been based in Narragansett Bay, operated by Specialty Diving Services Inc.  Do I see this correctly that she’s being operated from a topside helm?   Here is Charles Ritchie’s project.

When I posted Brad Ickes’ photos a month back, I forgot to post the best shots of Cable Queen he had sent.  I hope this makes amends for my having misplaced them.

The other day I noticed Cable Queen is docked back at her usual spot, nestled in a corner just west of the Moran dock.

These days there are photos everywhere of the salvage of incorrectly-ballasted  RORO Golden Ray.  This structure, as I understand it, incorporates both a saw and a lift.  This photo and the next two come from Chris RoehrigThese photos from gCaptain are stunning.   The yellow structure over the wreck is Versabar’s VB 10,000, a heavy lift vessel launched in 2010. 

Moving the deck barge around with portion of the wreck are Crosby tugs, Crosby Star, a 4200 hp boat, below and

to the left.  The real eye-catcher here is Kurt J Crosby, here alongside Crosby Leader.  Kurt J, according to the company website, packs a whopping 16500 hp!  Have a look at their photo of the 2000 build. Crobsy Leader, dwarfed and mostly obscured here, itself is rated at 15000 hp.  Seeing these behemoths at work would almost make a trip down there worthwhile.

Jack Ronalds sent along these photos from Strait of Canso.  It’s Calusa Coast and her

tank barge Delaware.  They’ve spent some years working on the Great Lakes and are now returning

to salt water.  They have returned to the sixth boro, where I photographed her 13 years ago, but I’ve not yet seen them this visit.  For a treasure trove of Jack Ronalds/marine traffic photos, click here.

Getting back to that first photo, MV McArthur began life in 1965 as NOAAS McArthur (S330).  She was decommissioned in 2003. In 2006 she was purchased by Blackwater USA (you’ve heard of them and their founder Eric Prince?) who offered it as a “warship for hire.”  In the murk, Blackwater USA morphed into a series of other private security businessesMV McArthur became Eaton while operated by Saracen International.  At last record, the Norfolk VA vessel flew the flag of Comoros and was called Maandeeq,  and since AIS showed her last in June 2019 in Bhavnagar district of Gujarat, India,  just north of Alang, I don’t think she’s chasing pirates anymore. 

For a crazy tangent, Gujarat is the 9th largest state in India by population.  At 9th place (of 34), it has a population greater than Italy, South Korea, Spain, Poland, etc.  It’s way larger than Canada, whose population is currently at 37 million.  India’s largest state by population, Uttar Pradesh,  is 200 million, which would make it the 8th largest country in the world by population, bigger than Russia, Mexico, Japan, etc . . .   But I digress.

Many thanks to Timo, Charles, Brad, Chris, and Jack for sharing these photos.

Related:  If you’ve not yet read Chris Maag’s story on NY sixth boro shipping, you can read it here, and enjoy the photos/video by Chris Pedota as well.

 

 

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