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The year 2007 spawned this series here.  Since you’ve stayed with this blog, I’m celebrating a milestone . . . the 300th post in this series.  Thanks for continued visits to tugster.  To honor this event, I solicited photos from you, particularly photos that’d never previously appeared on this blog.  I threw some of my own unusual ones in to round out the post.  Thanks to all who sent in photos, or thought about it, and added some explanation.  Since the internet allows quick and easy photo exchanges globally, I’m always interested in folks sharing photos of tugboats and other workboats from everywhere.  Vladivostok?  Karachi?  Baku?  Port of Spain?  Paramaribo?  Douala?  Luanda?  Umm Qasr?   I hope you get the idea.

Tim Sansom wrote:  ” taken at Auckland’s Wynyard Quarter in December 2016, showing the tugboat Koraki and the cement barge Marsden BayKoraki, built in 1985, regularly hauls cement barges between Auckland and Whangarei for Golden Bay Cement. The Wynyard Quarter is a redeveloped part of Auckland harbour between the ferry and cruise ship terminal and the marina, and usually has a few fishing boats tied up as well as ferries to the Hauraki Gulf islands, one of which you can see in the background.”

I took this one of Elizabeth Anne at the King’s Point dock in 2015. That’s the Throg’s Neck Bridge in the background.  The 1980 tug was donated to the US Merchant Marine Academy in 2014.

I took this on Oneida Lake NY in November 2016.  My platform was craneship Ward’s Island, now fish and other aquatic life habitat, but then was doing one of its last seasons plucking channel markers from the NYS Canals portion of the Lake. Tug Syracuse, 77′ x 20′ , has worked exclusively in NYS Canals since spring 1934.

William Mitchell took this photo of Donna and Charlie Costa’s Hobo in Wickford RI.

Jan van Sluisweg took this photo of the 1976 Arion, 94′ x 30′, towing City of Dubrovnik and approaching the lock in IJmuiden in 2014.

From Kyle Stubbs:  “Brusco’s Capt Bob Campbell hasn’t appeared and  offers a fun connection to Lindy Marie seen in your post Columbia River Tugs. Both the Lindy Marie (as  Fireball) and Capt Bob Campbell (as  Warrior), were in-house products of the Smith Tug and Barge Company of Rainier, Oregon. Founder Wilbur Smith had been witness to a number of accidents on tugboat decks, and as a result embraced a design philosophy that eliminated blind spots on the deck as seen from the pilothouse. The result was a series of tugs with unique, sloped deckhouses that earned the company the nickname of the “Studebaker Fleet” in reference to that automaker’s distinctive models of the 1950’s.”

The Studebaker fleet . . . I love that.  Kyle took this photo at Grays Harbor on the Washington coast.

From George Schneider:  “Maybe this one is too wee to count, but she’s the tug Elsa.  She was built back in 1955 by the Welding and Shipbuilding Company of Costa Mesa CA as their hull #1, and to my knowledge, the only vessel built there.  Her original owner was Francis P. Jones of the Jones Tug & Barge Company of Long Beach CA.  At the time she was 50 ft in length and rated at 290 HP.  Jones later lengthened her to about 60 ft. (58 ft registered) and HP was increased to 600.   Jones closed shop in the 1980s.  Since then she’s moved bunker barges in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area, and is now owned by Global Marine Transportation Inc. of Los Angeles.”

Another from George, not so wee: “Here’s my next , a Gulf tug.  She was originally built as Abdon Martin by Halter Marine at their New Orleans yard in 1976, and ownership was always listed as Halter Marine Inc, although Andrew Martin Sea Service Inc. appears to be a separate company who operated her.   In 1985 she was sold to the N. J. Guidry & Sons Towing Company, who remained listed as her owner while named Harvey Trojan, showing Harvey Gulf Intl. markings.  When Harvey Gulf decided to concentrate on supply boat activities, they sold her in 2014 to Signet Maritime Corp, and since then she has sailed as their Signet Trojan.”    If my info is correct, she’s 110′ x 34′ and rated at 13,500 hp.

From Antonio Alcaraz:  “VB Andalucia [built in 2004 and 97’x 36′] underway service Algeciras port.”

One of my own from Block Island, it’s Petersburg in October 2015.  The 1954 107′ tug was recently used in a movie.

Another of mine from February 2016, Sea Wolf A in Havana harbor.  The 1996 tug was built by Damex Shipbuilding in Santiago Cuba.

And in the sixth boro, I took this one of Paul T Moran.  Currently the 1975 built 138′ x 40′ 150′ x 49′ behemoth is in Mobile AL

Westbound in the East River, it’s Thomas D. Witte with Powhatan alongside.  My record keeping for the period is scrambled, but i believe I took this is 2005 or 2006.  As of this writing Powhatan, now operated by the Turkish Navy as Inebolu A590 is on the Turkish Black Sea coast between Trabzon and Samsun.

Again from George Schneider, who took it in June 2014 on Portrero Reach, Richmond CA on San Francisco Bay:  “One class of tugs you may not have seen in the Sixth Borough are the recent tractor tugs from Jensen Maritime Consultants.  They’re a widely respected group, evolving since Bay Delta put the first one in service in 2007.  Since that time, some of the majors have chartered these from Bay Delta, including Foss, Crowley, and AmNav, and once the quality of the design was recognized, companies have also gone directly to Jensen’s to have them built.  Bay-Delta began congealing as a company in the early 1990’s with second-hand tonnage.  They remain small, but obviously have been a leader in tug development.   This shows Delta Cathryn, built by Nichols Brothers in 2009.  She’s the second Jensen tug by that name, the first is now operating for Crowley as Vigilant.   In 2019 the first hybrid tug of this series, Delta Teresa,  was completed and also immediately chartered to Crowley.”

I took this photo of Ocean Henry Bain in Quebec City in March 2017.  The 2006 z-drive measures in at 95′ x 37.’

From Maraki, a Chinese built tug Pino, working in Colombia then off Cartagena.

Many thanks to Tim, William, Jan, Kyle, Antonio, George, and Maraki for these delightful photos and text.  I’d love to do this again, maybe at the 400 mark, or maybe sooner.  My editor is very easy-going.

 

 

 

Here was “7” and 1 through 6.

This post will run photos from twilight to twilight…

Above and below, prosaically Service Boat No. 1 is doing pilot exchange duty.  She’s not large or particularly powerful or new, but in twilight before dawn she looked and sounded formidable.

Ocean Basques, here approaching the Laviolette Bridge, is a solid 200 miles upstream of the islands with the same namesake.

Ocean Basques was built in Collingwood ON, as was Ocean Sept-Isles.

Quite unique and speedy, Ocean Catatug 1 raced downstream.

As afternoon falls, Ocean Bertrand Jeansonne follows Ocean Henry Bain out of the homeport basin.

That’s the marine traffic control tower on the other side in Levis QC.

Returning to another twilight shot, here’s Ocean Henry Bain pushing a deep barge down bound.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

Mostly photos, and all taken between Quebec City and Montreal.  Ocean Charlie is a great name.

Ocean Henry Bain moves a barge, possibly from a passenger terminal.

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Ocean Intrepide hangs at East Montreal.

But here in the South Shore Canal . . . the outlier . . .

 

Mary E. Hannah is way from out of the area.

 

And finally . . . in Valleyfield, it’s Cercle Polaire of GFFM.

 

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who posts when possible these days.

 

I’ve mentioned before about my people the Dutch celebrating “old years day” on December 31.   As the child of immigrants, I’m blessed by this one of many ways they see the world differently, a perspective I’m happy to share.  So here is a retrospective of the year, the result of a process of scanning through photos in the blog library, not overthinking it.

January.  Gunhilde Maersk with James, Kirby, and JRT plus Miriam Moran.  the year of the 1200-footers aka ULCVs becoming commonplace in the sixth boro.

February.  Ocean Henry Bain serves as a safety boat during  the ice canoe race I documented in my Carnavalons posts.

March. Cerro Grande here escorted a Caribbean-bound LNG ship, one of all the Panama Tugs posts

April. When I saw this section of drained canal bed between O-6 to O-7 in Oswego, I thought the work’d never get done before the season began, but I was wrong.  Of all my 2018 NYS Canals posts, this and this posted with the greatest urgency.

May.  Reliable pushed seaward by Lucy H.  As of today, Reliable lies under the sea gathering fishes and entertaining Davy Jones near Shinnecock.

June.  Jay Bee V headed out on a high-profile mission.  Has she returned to the sixth boro yet?

July.  I missed Rosemary‘s christening because that’s what happens when you don’t look at your calendar. First come first serve for a few tugster lighthouse calendars.  Send me an email with your mailing address.   As I said, I ran a few extra when I made up my Christmas gifts.

August.  Kimberly Selvick with AEP barges was one of the treats I saw in Calumet.  This day south of Chicago planted a seed of curiosity about the Lake Michigan/Mississippi River link I hope to be able to explore in 2019.  Many thanks to Christine Douglas.

September.  J. W.  Cooper delivers a pilot in Port Colborne at the Lake Erie end of the Welland Canal.  Because I hadn’t a satisfying enough fix from the canal earlier, I returned there in October.

October.  One Stork, a pink ULCV,  came into town.  It wasn’t her first visit/delivery, but it was the first that I caught.  She’s currently in the sixth boro.

November.  Morton S. Bouchard IV rounds Shooters Island light, Bouchard celebrated a big anniversary this year.

December.  Ruth M. Reinauer heads west into the Kills in December, the start of heating oil season.

And that’s it for the year, time for me to securely lock up Tugster Tower and prepare myself to meet 2019.  The older I get, the more profound is my awareness that although I make many plans for a new year, I might not see the end of it.  It’s just how it is.  Every day is a blessing.  Last year had my own personal ultima thule; I pray that 2019 brings its new ones.

Thanks to everyone who read, commented, and assisted me in 2018.  Happy and constructive new year day by day to you all.

This is the grande finale, although you’ll notice I didn’t know when the finalization would  . . . finalize.  Spotters on the bow of the safety boat watch the canoeists through the snow squalls.

And at 31 minutes after the start, the first boat  (Archibald micro brasserie) returning from the Lévis side comes into view,

pursued by two others.

Archibald lands and races home….

 

with the next two running close together.

Three more arrive closely clumped.

 

 

But that’s when I realized I’d missed an important detail:  they make more than one lap!  Notice the Archibald team heading back out!  Later I believe I understood they were disqualified, although I didn’t understand why.

Now I understand that it’s more a marathon than a sprint.

 

 

At this point I head back to point 1 (See yesterday’s map.) to watch from the start/finish line.  Notice the three incoming boats from over by the pine trees where I got the previous photos from.

The two teams push their canoe past the two 8200+ hp behemoths  

to take the checkered flag.  By this time, I’ve lost track of who’s who and in what place.

Here’s a tavern to help you celebrate.  Care for a glass of Caribou?  Click here to learn the secret of the incongruous plastic canes I saw a lot of men carrying.

I headed up the street past the ice taverns so that after tasting something I had to go only downhill to my snowcave.

These ice bars–I was told–go up around Christmas and by March start to melt.  For now, they are exquisite.  And the bottles to the right of Jaegermeister are local spirits:  Quartz, Chic choc rum, Coureur des bois whiskey, and Ungava gin.

As I said, from the ice bars it’s downhill to my snow cave inside the walled city and return to hibernation.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.  For more photos, click here.  For a video clip of the snow bath–I did NOT indulge–click here.

For some photos of a clear winter’s day in Quebec City last year, click here.  For more frozen St. Lawrence riverbanks photographed in 2017, click here.

 

The premier event of Carnaval de Québec has become ice canoeing, a unique sport stemming from early French settlement along the St. Lawrence:  in summer boats connected the opposite sides of the river, and in winter sleds traversed, but during the times between, canoes alone could provide this contact.  The need for treacherous crossings ended after the introduction of steamboats and building of bridges.

Now, hazards are addressed, and a total of 290 canoeists raced this year, 58 canoes.  Rules require that canoes weigh at least 225 pounds and provide a prescribed amount of flotation.

Use the map below to orient yourself.  The top three photos I took standing at point 1 looking toward the river.  Here a crane lowers a canoe onto the frozen portion of outer part of Bassin Louise.

See the pine tree cluster in the photo above?  That’s point 2.  U is upstream (to the right) and D, downstream (to the left).  The race happened on an ebb tide, so ice floes moved at 4 to 5 knots from U to D.  Obviously, since the race is from 1 to 2 to 3 for four crossings, racers leave the bassin and turn upstream, making the course triangular.

 

The rest of these photos I took from point 2, over near the pine trees.  Here the safety tug Ocean Henry Bain departs the bassin to break up ice that’s gathered at the opening over the past hour.

You can barely make out the city of Lévis–marked as 3 on the map–on the other side.

The bonhomme banner flies from the mast.

After the third prolonged blast from Ocean Henry Bain, the first racers–the elite women’s teams– depart, five -person crews wearing spiked crampons push the waxed bottomed canoes to open water.  The technique here is this:  keep two hands and one knee on the boat at all times in case your boot goes through.

Note the crowd;  numbers estimation has become a contentious sport in itself, but I’d guess 10,000 spectators braved the cold to be there.

Here the transition from pushing to rowing–with spiked oars–

begins.

Ten minutes later, other teams head out, again after a third blast from Ocean Henry Bain. 

Only the crew member at the stern has a paddle, rather than an oar.

Recall that at this point, crews turn upstream to contend with the 4 to 5 knot current;  the water flows that fast, and any ice chunks there do too.  So the technique here is to get momentum upstream ASAP.

Or else.  Here the blue canoe–heading for the tug, i.e., the wrong direction, got pushed downstream by that ice floe.  The red canoe also going the wrong way got turned by the blue canoe.  The three teams on the ice need to get to open water upstream ASAP because they are floating downstream.

Click on the photo of Jean Anderson below to get the article I’ve copied it from, but you’ll have to translate it.  Anderson is ice canoeing royalty,  a perennial champion of this event, as well as an innovator of gear for the sport.  Jean and his brother Jacques are mentioned in this article in English.

If you decide you have to witness ice canoeing, four more races are coming up in the next 30 days:  Montreal Feb. 11, Isle -aux-Coudres Feb. 17, Sorel-Tracy Feb. 24, and the grand championship back at Bassin Louise March 3.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who wonders what other unique sports events like this there are . . .  All I can think of right now are woodcutters festival like the one in Tupper Lake and Boonville and the Iditarod.  Surfing maybe?  Schooner racing?  Eleven Cities Tour? Bronc riding?  Help me out here.

And let’s make these mostly blue . . . Ocean Groupe, and mostly tugboats.  I took this photo six weeks ago in Montreal.

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Ocean Stevns and Ocean Delta were at the home dock in Quebec City.  Birk Thomas had caught Ocean Delta here once four years ago.

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Here’s Ocean Rusby, an incomplete and nameless vessel (Cecon Excellence?), and an Ocean pilot boat.

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Ocean Henri Bain and a small fishing boat lie across from the pastoral Ile d’Orleans.

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Kanguk II –a NEAS (Nunavut Eastern Arctic Shipping) small tugboat–appears to be a sister to Qimu here.  Along the port side of Kanguk II are barges for delivering containers from ship to shore.

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In Montreal, it’s Ocean Serge Genois and (possibly) Ocean Intrepide.

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Closer to the city, it’s Ocean Pierre Julien and Ocean Georgie Bain.  I don’t know the names of the two smaller boats to the right.

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These smaller workboats include OC 32

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La Trenche, and an unidentified boat underneath this bridge to NYC.

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Will Van Dorp took all these photos.

Where has the time gone since I did Ocean Blue 1?  Well, it’s not been wasted.   Ocean blue seems at least as ubiquitous on the lower Saint Lawrence as  green-red G-tugs are to the upper Great Lakes watershed.

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I took all these photos near their Quebec City base, nestled beneath the illuminated G3 grain elevators so reminiscent of the ones in Buffalo.

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Right up front and center is Ocean Tundra, with Ocean Taiga looking over its starboard shoulder.  Are they still the most powerful Canada-built tugs at over 8000 hp?  I’m going to have to invest in winter layers so that I can come up in January and see these machines in ice mode.

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Ocean Charlie docks here too.

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Just in from an assist, Ocean Ross Gaudreault and Ocean Henry Bain return to base.   Click here for the particulars on all the Ocean vessels.

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Here Ocean Ross Gaudreault and Ocean K. Rusby assist a heavily laden Garganey.

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In the distance beyond Ocean Stevns, is that Jacques Cartier National Park?

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And what blue-hulled vessel is that in the distance at the shipyard?

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Ocean Guide does pilot exchange round the clock.

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More Ocean vessels tomorrow.  All these photos by Will Van Dorp, who’s eager to return to Quebec.

 

I’ve made myself back to the sixth boro by train now, and I’m succumbing to “train lag,” which means I’m allowing myself a few days to put up chronologically arranged photos before focusing on some scene that caught me and haven’t let go.  The Quebec City-Levis ferries are part of a huge network.

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The Coast Guard base is just below–way below–Château Frontenac, where a fateful conference took place in 1943.

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An excursion boat has as namesake a Quebecois–same guy the extra ‘l’ notwithstanding– who undertook a significant journey with a priest.

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Ocean has a huge base in the old port.  I plan a host of Ocean posts soon.

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I don’t know if Nordik Express still makes this journey, but I intend to find out.

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Django dates from 1928, but more than that, I know nothing.

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And finally, back from a job, Ocean Henry Bain returns from a job, passing the pilots’ station.

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All photos by Will Van Dorp, who recalls this morning as a day that lives in infamy.  In remembrance, check out the first photo here.

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