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Crossing Bear Mountain Bridge the other afternoon–it’s December–I saw this light for the first time.

A bit later on the east side of the River, I pulled off at the “scenic overlook” because I knew this tug and barge were approaching, southbound.  See the same star near the ridge line, directly above the flat snow-covered roof to the right of the lights around the skating rink?

Here the unit–Morton S. Bouchard Jr. and (I think) B. No. 210–pass between Iona Island and the east side of the Hudson.  I’m guessing the buildings on the island date from its time as a US Navy ammunition facility.

 

This angle provides a good view of the barge notch into which the tug fits.

And if I had not yet seen enough lights, a northbound freight came around Jones Point, the edge of Dunderberg Mountain.  Fifty years ago, the Hudson River Reserve Fleet aka ghost ships stretched from there southward.  Here and here are posts I’ve done about the ghost fleet.  Washington Irving also wove the landscape into his tales inspired by that very landscape.

I took the photo below in August 2017 of Perkins Memorial Tower, a CCC project atop Bear Mountain but not visible the other afternoon from my vantage point.

Below is a photo I took of Morton S. Bouchard Jr. last week at the Bayonne Bridge.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

 

And the options are:  crush it, or

glide over it.  The latter is preferred by the Hudson River Ice Yachting Club on Tivoli Bay in Red Hook, New York, at least for today.  Click on the Hudson Ice Yachting link (and scroll down a bit) for a great juxtaposition with DonJon’s Atlantic Salvor.  Double click on a foto to enlarge it.

These boats are old:  Galatea, dating from the 1880s.

Might frogma be thinking to trade her kayak for an ice yacht?  Here are three gaff-rigged boats, the nearest with the jib lowered.

This lateen rigged boat . . . Vixen, is over a century old.

Another shot of Vixen in the foreground, and other iceboats, gaff with jib, jibless, and marconi, or bermuda.

Also over the one-century mark is 999, sailing east of the Hudson from

the Catskills.

Timeless, these boats.

All fotos taken this weekend by Will Van Dorp.  More iceboats soon.

Another three-letter abbreviation serving as title? It must indicate how I think this time of year: short words, like elementary school, like basic things.

In slightly warmer weather, she asked me how Morton did it. Morton being Morton S. Bouchard Jr. here the “T”, nose tucked into a shallow notch on this fuel B. Being in a smart-aleck mood, I said, “Just as we do.” Her harumph signaled that my attempt at wit had failed. “It,” she clarified, meant “push the barge upstream without it snapping the cables and yawing off in its own direction.”

 

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So, putting aside my attitude, I enlist Penn Maritime tug Julie, southbound here in Arthur Kill under goose escort, to help me demonstrate how Mort might do it.

 

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One of a pair, this starboard hardware inside a “ring” plate is not a vestigial wheel. Neither decorative nor defensive, it’s a coupler. This link shows how it works.

 

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Davis Sea has a similar coupler,

 

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as do Nicole Leigh Reinauer

 

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and Jane A. Bouchard. And as they do it, so might Morton.

 

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All photos, WVD.

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