You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘unusual tow’ tag.

I’ve seen unusual tows before 2019, but it was only then that I started counting.  I’ll add links to previous unusual tows at the end of this post.  So where’s the tow?

It’s (l to r) Mary Alice, Laura Maersk, and Emily Ann, all behind Atlantic Enterprise.

The story is simple if unfortunate . . .

You’ve no doubt experienced the same with your car, or boat . . .  Something happens, and you need a tow.  This one started a few days ago, as you can read in the link in the previous sentence.  Here‘s more detail.

Fire Fighter II met the tow as it approached the Narrows.

Mary Alice had starboard,

Emily Ann had port.

The trio delivered the container ship to Stapleton.  Moran tugs took the ship from there to the container docks.

Today’s weather was fabulous and seas flat, not so a few days ago.

All photos, WVD.

Some previous unusual tows might be these of Wavertree, Peking, Lehigh Valley 79, Dorothy McAllister and mystery ship, the future OHP, Thorco Hilde, SS Columbia, and I could go on . . .  Maybe I need to add some appropriate tags.

 

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Capt. Willie Landers last appeared here  several years ago;  she lost a substantial mast to gain an upper wheelhouse.

She came in during my favorite time of day.

She met Atlantic Sail off Stapleton.

Meredith left a barge alongside Orange Victoria and went on to other assignments.

Troy’s pride Sarah D moved a stone scow out past Jamaica Bay, as all her crew who could did work on deck.

 

 

Ava M waited for a ship as a sloop sailed past.

Daisy Mae headed out for Philly with CMT Y NOT 1 and a load

of non-ferrous scrap, maybe.

 

 

Sea Fox headed out to a job and met Bomar Caen coming into Brooklyn.  Bomar Caen was previously CMA CGM Jaguar.

All photos, WVD.

You’ll excuse this poor quality lede photo once you realize who/what took it:  the Statue of Liberty has functioning eyes and watches everything that passes through this sector of the sixth boro.  Think about that:  she’s big and she witnesses!  And yesterday it was raining here, so those are water droplets on the lens.

But the point of this post is the tug with an unusual tow just entering from the right.  I know it’s not very clear, but bear with me . .  or us.  It gets better.

A bit later, Phil Little was at the ready from the cliff across from the Manhattan passenger terminal, but who knew which side of the tow to watch until this point.

A bit later, Luis Melendez, NYC Parks dock master at Dyckman Marina,  was on the optimal albeit rainy side of the tow to see schooner Pioneer well defined against the scow.

Here’s a little bit of history if you’re not familiar with Pioneer:  she was built in Marcus Hook PA in 1885 as a sand sloop, operating between Delaware Bay and the Delaware River. So think of the photo this way, and I’m paraphrasing someone else here: she was a sand sloop converted to a sand schooner (and other configurations) now made to a sand or aggregate scow and headed upriver pushed by the mighty 1957 Frances.   Pioneer was hitching a ride to Albany for engine work.

A few dozen miles later, Kevin Oldenburg was ready to get even clearer pics.  It was still rainy but not yet dark.

 

After she rounded Jones Point,

she was soon visible from the Bear Mountain Overlook along Hwy 202.

That’s Iona Island off the port side and

sand sloop/schooner that Pioneer was, she had clearly a small fraction of capacity when compared to her 21st century scow descendants.

Many thanks to Justin Zizes, Jonathan Boulware, Phil Little, Luis Melendez, Kevin Oldenburg, and the Lady of the Harbor for their contributions–made in rainy December conditions–to this post.  By the way, did anyone get photos from W. O. Decker?  Anyone else from any other vantage point?

A previous time we had this many collaborators watching traffic was just over a decade ago and involved sailing barges and a mothership named Flinterborg.

Getting back to the Statue of Liberty cam, “girl with no eyes” made a great song, but it could certainly not be said to refer to our Lady of the sixth boro.

Since I mentioned Dyckman Marina, whatever became of Mon Lei, the Chinese junk formerly owned by Robert “believe it or not” Ripley and recently docked up there at the now defunct-La Marina for a few years?

Lady Liberty called me up last night to apologize for the poor quality of photo she delivered and asked why Pioneer had not hitched a ride on a nicer day.  I was speechless, because what does one say when the Lady calls you up on your personal number??!@#?

 

 

No need for much language here.  I started these photos around 0830.  Despite some rain, conditions were ideal for this loading . . . or engulfing.

Here Dorothy J gently moves the antique barque foot by foot closer to Hamburg.

Combo-Dock III, the engulfer, lies in wait.

Robert IV assists when needed.

Without the zoom, I imagined the gentleman with the yellow helmet to stand by on the helm.

We have 20 meters and closing . . .

 

 

 

With big power on minuscule tolerances, Dorothy J eases her in.

 

 

 

The barque floats gently forward in the hold.

Lines to capstans on the heavy lift ship are doing the work, as the tugs stand by until released from service.

 

 

 

 

 

Peking is now engulfed.  Time is about 1130.  Operations to make fast and secure now begin before they head out into the Atlantic for Germany.

Many thanks to Jonathan Kabak and Jonathan Boulware for the floating platform.

All photos here by Will Van Dorp, who is thrilled to have seen this today.

Cargo I’ll define as “goods transported for profit.”  Click here to see the range of cargoes posts.

So what’s this?  That’s what I wondered when I first glimpsed it yesterday, over by the Sandy Hook Pilots’ pier.

I got no confirmation, but there’s no mistaking what this is.  And there was this tugster post involving Onyx Arrow from just two weeks ago.

In an ideal world, I would have had means to look down onto the tow, say, from Fort Wadsworth or a drone.  From my vantage I didn’t get olfactory evidence, and maybe I should be thankful for that.

Just the facts . . . Gelberman towed the carcass and traveled a distance roughly 50 miles to the SE from the end of the Ambrose, and then returned.   The whale, I gather from this NOAA article, at some point such that it would not drift back into land, became a “whale fall.”  This surfing writer, based on who knows what authority, suggests this is the best way to dispose of such a carcass.

So who profits here are the locals of all the boros being spared the smell of decay but also all the creatures in the food chain around the whale fall.

Tangentially related and tied to the focus of most of my attention these days, did you ever hear the story about the what in the Erie Canal?  Well, go back to 1891, a Capt. Nickerson killed a 65′ whale off Cape Cod.  And he must have been really tired of salt water and his erstwhile profession because he decided to try making a fortune showing off his catch to folks along the inland waterways, in this case the Erie Canal, that highway mainlining immigrants into the American heartland and creating boom towns along the way.  I’m not sure what sort of steamer he used to tow the whale, but westbound he went, stopping at docks and charging folks . . . kind of like his own unique Coney Island show.  I’m told that the farther west he got, the less he could charge . . .  Check out this article telling of the whale’s impact in central New York state in November 1891 . . .   and for anyone not familiar with the route, Seneca Falls is on a cul-de-sac off the route to Buffalo.

Rembert, frequent contributor of wit and esoterica here, read my mind and informed me of a beluga that swam more than 100 miles up the Rhine back in 1966, animating a generation with a desire to clean up the watery environment and more . . ..

 

All photos above by Will Van Dorp.

And on yesterday’s post with the three landscape shots . . . commenters gussed it:  photos #2 and 3 were both taken from the Newburgh area looking south.  Photo #1 prompted me to do the post because at first glance, I thought it too was a photo taken from the Newburgh area looking south.  More careful study showed it was not.

Anyhow,  a friend and former colleague Scott Stroot recently took that photo in Oregon, and wrote this: “Columbia River Gorge, just downstream of Hood River OR. Some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world (IMHO).  Tugs & barges sharing the river with sail & para boarders is a pretty common sight in certain spots. Eastern end of this gorge is likewise dramatic, but the topography is temperate desert, as opposed to “wet side” verdant [as he usually sees in Kentucky]. Absolutely stunning.”  This is all the encouragement I need to add the Columbia River Gorge to my very long list of places to gallivant . . .  Thanks, Scott.

 

Who else greeted Wavertree on the rest of the way home?  John J. Harvey is always in on celebrations.

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Lettie G. Howard was there,

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as was the helicopter.  Feehan presented herself on the far side of Rae.

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Pioneer accounted for

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herself with crew in the crosstrees.

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Pioneer and Lettie teamed up at times.

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Wire showed up.

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New York Harbor School had two boats there, including Privateer and their

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newest vessel Virginia Maitland Sachs, about which I’ll post soon.

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Melvillian throngs came down to the “extremest limit of land” on Pier 15 and 16, for one reason or another, but who were about to be treated to some excellent ship handling.

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Rae took the lead, showing the need for tugboats of all sizes.

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The larger tugs pushed and pulled as needed to ease into the slip

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until all lines were fast and

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and the shoreside work needed doing.

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Bravo to all involved.  If you want to take part in a toast to Wavertree, you can buy tickets here for the September 29 evening.

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If you haven’t read the NYTimes article by James Barron yet, click here.

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All photos by Will Van Dorp, who hopes I left no one out and who as before is grateful to the South Street Seaport Museum and the photographers’ boat provided by US Merchant Marine Academy and crewed by a set of dedicated cadets.

Often folks ask how one can learn about the harbor or is there a book about the sixth boro.  Volunteering at South Street Seaport Museum is a great way available to all to get access to the water, to learn from like-minded folks, and to start on a journey of reading the harbor and its traffic for yourself.  Each volunteer’s journey will be unique, and willing hands make institutions like this museum survive and thrive.

Almost exactly 16 months ago, Wavertree left Pier 16 for a lot of work at Caddell Dry Dock.    Here was my set of photos from that day, and here,  subsequent ones at several month intervals.  Yesterday she made way, back to Pier 16.

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Here’s looking back west.  Compare the photo below with the third one here to see how much work has been accomplished on the Bayonne Bridge during the same 16 months.

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Yesterday, Rae helped, as did

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Dorothy J and Robert IV.

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The combined age of Rae, Robert IV, and Dorothy J is 139 years, whereas the beautifully restored flagship they escorted in is 131 years old.

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And as the tow approached the Statue, John J. Harvey joined in.

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These photos all by Will Van Dorp, who is grateful to the South Street Seaport Museum and the photographers’ boat provided by US Merchant Marine Academy and crewed by a set of dedicated cadets.

For some interesting history on Wavertree and info on a fundraiser on board on September 29, 2016, click here.  For the story of how Wavertree came from Argentina to New York, read Peter & Norma Stanford’s A Dream of Tall Ships, which I reviewed here some time ago.

More photos of the return tomorrow.

SS Columbia and her resurrection . . . back in November 2011, when I took this photo in Detroit, I was not a believer.

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But a year ago, she was towed from Detroit to a Toledo graving dock for inspection and most urgent hull repairs.  The photo below and some of those that follow are used with permission from the SS Columbia project.

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This past summer she was refloated, and

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on September 1, Great Lakes tugs Michigan (1965)  and Nebraska (1929) arrived to tow her from Toledo to Buffalo.   Here’s 0820,

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0830, and

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departing the Maumee River by 1030.

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The next two photos were taken by Luke Wark . . .  late afternoon September on a very placid Lake Erie.  Now note what happens to the stack in the next few photos.

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David Torke captures the tow arriving off  Buffalo and

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up the canal to its new but temporary dock . . . .

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Many thanks to Ian Danic for permission to use these photos.  You can keep informed about the project through this website.

Click here for the article from Professional Mariner.

After a four-day festival of introducing New York folk to historic vessels and (more) . . .  Pegasus escorts Lehigh Valley 79 back to Red Hook.

So if I had to list the “more” in  question, I’d say  . . .  history and stories of the port and days gone by and “fire mops” and leaky pipes with names like “old Faithful” , glimpses of present but ever-changing skylines, demonstrations of docking and departures,  churning up mud bottoms and making white frothy spray, lurching and rolling  and pitching on the Hudson, and

now it’s homewater bound, heading for Red Hook;

but first, a quick stop in Erie Basin for

remaking the tow, shifting Pegasus to the side most conducive

to getting the 97-year-old barge that serves among MANY other things as a circus tent and an art gallery

away from a little more past

and fast to its dock, back to the closest front-row seat to the

sweet face of Bartholdi’s imagination.

Lines get adjusted and readjusted according

to commands from the wheelhouse.

Bartholdi’s lady is always first to raise her hand and ask all about another weekend stop on the tour.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who encourages your support of Pegasus and Lehigh Valley 79.

These fotos compliments of Allen Baker, whose fotos ran previously here and here … and other places.   Elsbeth II (featured in a New Yorker story by Burkhard Bilger in April 19, 2010) tows dead ship Horizon Crusader to be scrapped At Southern Recycling.  Elsbeth II is a triple-screw boat built by Smith Maritime‘s owner, Latham Smith.

Of the two Crescent vessels,   Point Clear minds the stern and another tug escorts on port.  Tug alongside on starboard . . . identified with Harold Tartell’s help … is Angus R. Cooper (1965, ex-Paragon, Anthony St. Philip).

Crusader‘s older sib–Challenger–seems to languish in Bayonne.  Anyone know what’s happening with Challenger?  It did make at least one trip south recently, but now it seems idled again.   [[Thanks to Jeff Schurr:  Said Bayonne vessel is NOT Challenger but rather Discovery, which explains why I thought she (Challenger) had quickly deteriorated into her former condition. ]]  Jeff, thanks for the correction.

Also, down along the big river recently was Paul T. Moran, 1975, ex-Ocean Venture, S/R Golden State, Exxon Golden State, and Eliska.  Paul T. appeared here light back more than two years ago.

Also along the big river, from left to right:  Bluefin (2009), Susan W (1982, ex-General Lee), Gladys B (1937), and Capt. Albert 1931, ex-Miss Sarah) .

Many thanks to Allen and Harold.

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