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Yes . . . I’ve been off wifi and away from the sixth boro, sometimes admiring images like the one below.  I’m back now and have more photos from July 2010 to revisit the Piscataqua, and a watershed where I canoed, kayaked, and just generally roamed from 1986 until 2000, along with some hiatuses out of the country.

A fixture in Portsmouth NH is the Moran fleet on Ceres Street.

L to R back in July 2010 are Mary M Coppedge, Carly A. Turecamo, and Eugenia Moran.  Mary M Coppedge, 1975 and 95′ x 30′ and 3200 hp is still in service.  Eugenia Moran 1966 and 102′ x 28′ and single screw 2875 hp and built at Jakobson  is “laid up.”   Carly A. Turecamo, 1966 and 98′ x 30′ and single screw at 2200 hp is now Marjorie Winsow.

Sakonnet . . . based in Gosport  . . . is a mystery to me.  This photo was taken in Portsmouth.

Portsmouth Navy Yard (PSNY) in the Picataqua has been active since 1800, the presidency of John Adams, making it the oldest continuously operated USN shipyard.   YTB 771 aka Keokuk, 109′ x 31′ was commissioned in 1964. Some other YTBs that have been featured on this blog can be found here.  The sixth boro’s staple ex-YTB is Ellen McAllister.

YTL 602 aka Cocheco was commissioned in 1945.

Nose-to nose with YTL 602 is a tug I can’t identify.  It’s much newer and has lots of fendering below the waterline, an adaptation for working with submarines, which is PNSH’s specialty.

By this article, the mystery tug and the one below are both LT-65 tugs, although that seems impossible to me.

Sir William Pepperell appears to be a launch named for a Colonial merchant from Kittery ME, right across the Piscataqua.  Click here to read a 1924 published book about  Pepperell and two friends written by John Francis Sprague.

Two USCG cutters in the harbor that day were Reliance and

Campbell.

And of course . . . there were lobster boats galore.

 

I have not been back in since 2017, when I went to see the new Moran tug San Jose. It’s high time for a revisit.  A memorable canoe trip I took there was  . . . early 1990s on the Great Bay, starting in Newmarket and eventually losing the tide.

Here‘s a bit more.

All photos, WVD.

November 2009 saw the USS New York (LPD-21) arrive in her namesake city for christening commissioning. Just faintly, the name is visible on the stern.

I also went up to the Lyons NY dry dock in November 2009 and caught Urger, then in seasonal layup. Five years were to go by before I did my season on this Barge Canal tugboat.  May she return!

Firefighter was still working in the sixth boro.

Stephen was working then too, and she’s still working today.

Cape Ann’s Essex Creek is hardly the sixth boro, but you can get there from here . . . . and Essex MA is one of my favorite places, although –truth be told–I’ve been there only once since 2009.

Some miles north of Essex Creek is the Piscataqua River, and back then these were the horses in Moran’s stable on Ceres Street:  Carly A. Turecamo, Mary M. Coppedge, and Eugenia Moran.  Carly‘s now in Maine with Winslow, Eugenia is maybe laid up, and Mary M. is still working there . . . but again I’ve not been there in almost two years.

And finally . . .  she who need not be named alongside a dock in Philly.

Any since we’re on the retired undefeated speed champion, let’s zoom in on the “crow’s nest” in these next two photos . . .

Not my photo although I felt like talent that day . . .   Here and here are more photos from that day, in 2014.

This last photo is by Chris Ware.  All others by Will Van Dorp.

 

Under wraps last summer, this new build in Cleveland was ready for the intended client, but  . . .

“we have a problem” finalizing the deal, so there had to be another deal.

So finally a month ago, San Jose got under way from Cleveland getting through the Saint Lawrence and around Nova Scotia bound for eastern US.

Jack Ronalds caught the next two photos as the tug and crew sought refuge in Port Hawkesbury after having ridden out gales from the mouth of the Saint Lawrence to the Strait of Canso.

When the stormy seas lay down, they left port again, rounding the point at Canso, but southern coast of Nova Scotia was still rough and required sheltering again before making the jump across to Portsmouth NH,

arriving in the wee hours at this lovely spot on Ceres Street up the Piscataqua a ways.

I have long history with the Piscataqua going back to the mid-1980s.  As a much younger kayaker, I used to ride its current all the way around New Castle . . . .  Here, here, and here are some previous tugster posts mostly showing Portsmouth.  Note the Christmas tree of Drum Point?  To her port side is Mary M. Coppedge.  More Moran photos from Portsmouth will be included in an upcoming post.

Here’s a closeup of San Jose, with an

even closer up here, showing the location of its intended client.

And finally, here’s a view of the Moran yard from Badgers Island, Maine, a short distance across the Piscataqua.  What these last few photos fail to convey is the inviting smell of lobsters, shellfish, and other delightful fruits of the sea.

San Jose COULD be called Handy Four, as its largely the same vessel as Handy Three shown below, as taken in 2013 in the process of my writing this article.  San Jose will soon be painted to match the other Moran tugs in the photo above, as Handy Three has already been since PRT has been purchased by Moran.

 

Thanks to Jack Ronalds for use of his photos.  All others by Will Van Dorp, who just has to find some good lobster for dinner today.

 

The Piscataqua is mighty . .  in its current despite its 12-mile length.  I know from kayaking experience how swift the currents flow as they shuttle between the Gulf of Maine and Great Bay, once a place of gundalows bearing loads of salt hay.  If you open no links but one in this post, make it this one on salt marsh hay just north of Cape Ann.  Today the Piscataqua still carries cargo, from and to all watery areas of the planet.  And to ensure that shipping happens without incident, a small fleet

of Moran tugs stands by:  Carly A. Turecamo, Mary M. Coppedge, and Eugenie Moran.

Anyone notice what Carly has in common with, among others, the sixth boro’s Ellen McAllister?

Training wheels . . .  aka bucket fenders; I call them armor.

Currently offloading at the Granite State Minerals‘ salt pier:  Bosphorus Queen (Click on video to see her approach the pier) .

Salt, I had not imagined it could look

so much

like sand.

We wanted to go taste it, but DHS kept us out.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Attempt at humor:  what might be an appropriate name for a lightship?  Phosphorus Queen.

Research question:  Many municipalities, neighborhoods, and homes mark holidays in the dark season December with lights in prominent places.   What–if any–sense of these non-navigation lights decorate the sixth boro?  Other harbors?  What might be a positive addition?  I’m not talking religion.  I’m just fishing for ideas here.   Check out what Gloucester and Rockland (ME) do here.

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