I’ve Just Met a Girl Named…

Leaves are changing, days are shorter, and the sun is becoming harder to find. So, naturally, today was a cloudy Fall day with a touch of rain. Delray Park is becoming barren as the temperatures drop, and today I nearly had the place to myself.

Algoma Navigator

However, I was joined by the Algoma Navigator. The veteran Canadian was refueling at Sterling Fuels in Windsor.

Federal Miramichi and Thunder Bay

Downriver, the Federal Miramichi is loading grain at ADM in Windsor, while the Thunder Bay loads salt.

Innovation

With me on my side of the river was the Innovation.

Innovation

The 460 foot long barge is unloading powdered cement at the LaFarge Springwells Dock. Hidden is her tug, Samuel de Champlain.

Maria Desgagnés

But this is the boat that I’m here for.

Maria Desgagnés

The tanker Maria Desgagnés is sailing upbound for Sarnia, loaded with some sort of oil product.

Maria Desgagnés

This is my first time ever catching Maria up-close, so she had been high on my “to-see” list. It’s been a good year for me and Desgagnés boats, including AméliaMélissaZéladaCamillaSarahJanaCatherineVéga, and now Maria.

Maria

At 393 feet long, Maria is the shortest tanker in the Desgagnés fleet.

Maria Desgagnés

She was built in China in 1999, and looks like she could easily be a saltie.

Maria Desgagnés

Her stack is interesting, as it has two slits running across it.

Maria Desgagnés

I’ve also always been a fan of Desgagnés’s simple stack logo design (even if the colors bug me).

Maria and Navigator

Maria‘s 1999 stern and the 1967 stern of the Algoma Navigator make for an odd clash.

Maria Desgagnés

I like the Navigator better, but I already have plenty of good shots of her. Now I have some of Maria too.

Maria and Navigator

So I’ll leave Maria to her business, as she has about 5 hours until her arrival in Sarnia at this point.

Maria Desgagnés

So adieu Maria. Please send more of your fleetmates my way soon!

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Return of the Acorn

It’s Saturday afternoon, and that means it’s boat time! Today I went back to Belle Isle to continue what I started last Saturday.

Portugal

I found a tiled rock, which is cool since these have been harder and harder to find since I started coming here regularly in 2012. A former kitchen tile of a Portugese ship is the centerpiece of this one.

Adam E. Cornelius

Meanwhile, an American ship is the centerpiece of the Detroit River. This one might look new to some of you…

Adam E. Cornelius

The 680 foot long Adam E. Cornelius entered service for the season in September. Prior to that, she last sailed in 2011. So basically, she went into an (almost) 3-year lay-up right when I started regularly boatwatching. But the slumber has finally come to an end.

Adam E. Cornelius

The Cornelius is a unique vessel, essentially a modified larger version of the LLT River Class. She was built in 1973, and in recent years was pushed to the sidelines by her inconvenient size. She is the smallest vessel in the fleet that is too large for the Cuyahoga River.

Adam E. Cornelius

Cargo demands turned out well enough this year (partially due to the icy winter) that ASC is operating two more vessels in 2014 than they did in 2013 (the John J. Boland also sat out last season).

Adam E. Cornelius

The most interesting feature on the ACorn is her cabins. The self-unloading contraption is mounted on top of the pilothouse, and even runs back to the impressive twin stacks. The pilothouse area seems to be reaching forward from the rest of the cabins.

IMGP2094

Just for her unique looks, it is nice to have the Cornelius back out this season. Now there’s something else out there to see.

Adam E. Cornelius

You will not see many shots from this angle, because the light was completely awful. But I bid the Cornelius adieu as she heads to Toledo to unload.

Diamond Belle

A healthy-looking Diamond Belle comes by a few minutes later.

Lady Doris

Now here I thought my day was over, but the Lady Doris made a convenient appearance (the light, however, was not convenient).

Lady Doris

The 607 foot long saltie is heading for the Port Huron Anchorage to wait for (I believe) a loading dock somewhere.

Lady Doris

Her gray paint is a little boring, and seemingly turns blue in this light.

Lady Doris

This summer I saw one of her sisters, the green Andean.

Lady Doris

Lady Doris goes by quickly and is on her way into Lake St. Clair.

Ken Boothe Sr.

I decided to make one more stop, Delray Park, where I was greeted by the Ken Boothe Sr. and her barge Lakes Contender.

Ken Boothe Sr.

The pair is moving at a very slow pace (maybe 3 knots?), heading for the Mistersky Fuel Dock. Ships still rarely move that slowly when checked down at this spot.

Diamond Belle

Diamond Belle makes another appearance just after turning around.

Diamond Belle and Ken Boothe Sr.

The Diamond Belle easily outpaces the Boothe heading upriver.

Belle and Boothe

I actually came down to Delray to see the tug Sharon M I and barge Huron Spirit, but they failed to come this far up the river, instead docking downriver at Morterm.

Lakes Contender

Lakes Contender continues to plod along, and I had better get back home.

That will do it for this weekend. I checked the Cornelius off my list, but still have a few to-do’s for this Fall before the season winds down. On to the next one.

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Fall on the Isle III

Belle Isle

If you’ve never been to Belle Isle, I suggest you check it out. All of it. There is so much cool stuff hidden all over. That goes for the rest of Detroit as well. But Belle Isle is the best place to see ships, too.

Algoma Enterprise

And Saturday afternoon, it was Algoma Enterprise time.

Algoma Enterprise

This is my first time seeing an Algoma ship since July 16… that explains why I haven’t been feeling right these past few months!

Algoma Enterprise

The Enterprise was an unexpected visitor for me. In fact, the Puffin was the only boat I expected to see on Saturday. But it was one of those days, I guess.

Algoma Enterprise

Fall might be my favorite season for watching boats… there’s a certain feeling in the air. And it’s the time when I have to rush to see as much as I can before Winter. Considering the two months I missed here in Detroit, I have more to look for than usual.

Algoma Enterprise

So while the Enterprise wasn’t on my “must-catch” list, it’s still nice to see a boat that I didn’t expect (if you’re questioning my prediction skills, she was at the fuel dock when I left home and I didn’t know how long she’d be).

Bridge

I take most of these pictures from near the tip of the island, but rarely ever go all the way out there. On Saturday I did. This neat bridge was installed in 2012 and separates Blue Heron Lagoon from the Detroit River.

Power Plant

The power plant (formerly known as the Seven Sisters) always looms from mainland Detroit.

Belle Isle

As is typical for mid afternoon, the lighting was frustrating but could be interesting when looked at the right way. This would make for a crappy boat picture, but looks good with trees instead.

Belle Isle

Someday these leaves will change color…

Pathfinder

See what I meant about frustrating light? I just kept getting worse. My third surprise ship of the day is the Pathfinder.

Pathfinder

I knew that this one was coming, but I didn’t expect the other two to keep me here long enough to catch her. But it was one of those days…

Pathfinder

Built in 1953, Pathfinder was my oldest catch of the day. Unfortunately, she is no longer a steamer like she once was.

Dorothy Ann

I was quite happy to see her and her tug Dorothy Ann, because this is actually my first encounter with this pair since December 2012. And I saw her five times that year!

Dorothy Ann

So… welcome back to tugboathunter!

Dorothy Ann

The Dorothy Ann is a 7,200 horsepower articulated z-drive tug that is among the more impressive that I’ve seen. Elite power and maneuverability.

Pathfinder

They head off into Lake St. Clair, and this time there are no more surprise visitors.

fishy

Except him.

That’s all for this weekend… hopefully more soon!

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Fall on the Isle II

October is in full force here in southeast Michigan. Yesterday was a chilly and windy day on Belle Isle, but the boats didn’t seem to care.

Puffin

Here comes a big green one, making the turn off Windmill Point Light as she enters the Detroit River.

Puffin

The Puffin is 656 feet long and is bound for Toledo, where she will likely load grain.

Puffin

However, she will first be spending some time in the Belle Isle anchorage, so her anchor is down in preparation for her stop on the other end of the island.

Mr. Jet Ski

Making his first appearance since last Fall, Mr. Jet Ski is up to his old tricks – riding freighter wakes with ease.

Puffin

This is my first time meeting Puffin, but in the past she has worn the Canfornav stack logo. She now sports the Harren & Partner stack logo over the Canfornav-colored stack.

Puffin

The Puffin is a pretty good-looking boat for a salty.

Puffin

Her anchor hangs near the bulbous bow, but it’s not as close as it looks here.

Puffin

Puffin moves behind the trees on her way to the anchorage, and eventually Toledo.

Indiana Harbor

Expecting to head home, I first went on a walk around the tip of the island near the Livingstone Lighthouse. Out of nowhere, the Indiana Harbor made an appearance.

Indiana Harbor

At 1,000 feet, the Indiana Harbor is too long for me to get the entire ship in the frame from this location.

Indiana Harbor

Since my last meeting with Indiana, ASC and Shedd Aquarium have put some banners on the side of her accommodations.

Indiana Harbor

That part looks nice, but the rest of the ship could use a bit of a touch-up.

Indiana Harbor

The Indiana Harbor is returning upbound from Zug Island, where she unloaded taconite.

Indiana Harbor

Now I can get her entire hull in one shot as she heads away into Lake St. Clair.

Indiana Harbor

And off she goes, so other people can take her picture as she makes her trip north.

I’ll pause here, but I have another post from Belle Isle on Saturday. I’ll do that tomorrow.

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Great Return

Remember me? Seriously… do you? If you don’t remember why I haven’t posted since the beginning of August, I’ll try to make a long story short: camera broke in June, camera sent to manufacturer for repair in July, used loaner camera on trip in July, manufacturer nearly loses broken camera, manufacturer sends brand-new camera as compensation for delays. So, I now have a new camera, and this evening I used it for the first time down in Detroit. About time.

Great Republic

My spot for the evening was Delray Park, so I could catch the Great Republic wearing red.

Great Republic

I haven’t seen the Republic since May 2013, and back then she was wearing black. Since getting her coat of red this past winter, she’s been on my short list of boats to see.

Great Republic

So, for that reason, it was really nice to see her on my first visit to Detroit since July 16.

Great Republic

The evening light at Delray was great as usual.

Great Republic

The bow paint seems to be a little off… especially the white part…

Great Republic

You may notice that the Republic‘s wheelhouse is positioned very far astern, which is due to her original job of hauling ore on the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland. Since moving to Great Lakes Fleet Inc. in 2011, she no longer visits the Cuyahoga.

Great Republic

The Republic is one of the most unique ships on the Great Lakes, and I’m glad to finally have some good and recent shots of her.

Great Republic

At this point the Great Republic began to check down heavily, as she was heading for the Mistersky Power Station to fuel.

Great Republic

Her ultimate destination is Green Bay, where she will unload coal.

Great Republic

So away she goes. A great return with the Great Republic.

So, it feels like a huge weight has been lifted off my back now that I’ve finally ended my longest boat drought since 2011. I expected a small gap after losing the camera back in June, but nothing like this. But I’m back now, and with a new and much nicer camera. Hopefully it works out to be a great Fall.

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Providence for the Finale

I meant to get this up two days ago, but couldn’t. Sorry. Anyway, this is the final post from my East Coast trip. On July 29th, the day after I left Boston, I made a quick stop in Providence to see a few tugboats.

JoAnne Reinauer III

Sitting at the McAllister dock is the JoAnne Reinauer III.

JoAnne Reinauer III

The tall articulated tug resembles a giraffe, among other things.

JoAnne Reinauer III

Her JAK coupler system really sticks out of her side.

Puma

Behind is McAllister’s attractive tug Puma.

Puma

However, Puma decides to leave for an assist job. If only that car wasn’t there…

Puma

There she goes…

JoAnne Reinauer III

Back to JoAnne, she is here waiting for her barge to finish working cargo across the harbor.

JoAnne Reinauer III

She was originally a conventional tug, and she used to look like this. Quite the transformation.

JoAnne Reinauer III

I think I prefer the looks of the older version.

Shannon McAllister

Now we have a new guest at the dock.

Shannon McAllister

Shannon McAllister has appeared, and is taking awhile to dock herself.

Shannon McAllister

Anyway, as I said it was a quick stop in Providence. I am done.

So, that was my East Coast trip. After this, I spent two nights in the Adirondacks, two nights in Ohio, and I am now back home typing this. It was nice to see some new things, but hopefully lakers are on the menu soon!

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Beantown

After touring the USS Constitution in Boston on Sunday, I did a little strolling around the Charlestown Navy Yard and found a few other nautical objects of interest.

Cassin Young

The retired WWII destroyer Cassin Young is moored in the next slip over from Old Ironsides.

Cassin Young

The Cassin Young is open for public touring, but oddly enough, it was not open on Sunday.

Cassin Young

Here’s a close-up of the ship’s bridge and battle marks.

Cassin Young

And just in case you were unsure of her name.

historians

There two men were both staring at the hahbah, so I turned around to see what was there.

Provincetown

Oh, it’s just the cruise vessel Provincetown II.

Provincetown II

She sure was having a party – music playing and people yelling. I wish I was onboard.

USCGC Escanaba

Across the hahbah at the Coast Guard base sits the USCGC Escanaba. Since she’s named after a small Great Lakes port, I found it important that I take a picture.

Rookie

I also got appearances from two water taxis. The Rookie is probably new on the job, considering her name.

Rita

Following right behind is the Rita.

Cassin Young

Further into the yard, outside the Constitution museum, I can get another nice view of the Cassin Young. Any guesses on what’s in front of her?

drydock

If you said drydock, good job! This old-looking drydock is being prepped for a very important visitor next year – the USS Constitution. Her drydocking is expected to take several years, so I was glad to tour her now before she goes in.

Liberty Teresa

Flipping ahead to Monday morning, I followed up my Philadelphia experience with a Boston duck tour aboard old Liberty Teresa.

Molly Molasses

On the Charles River we passed some other ducks, and Molly Molasses was especially photogenic. I didn’t see many other boats on the tour, though.

Henry Longfellow

In fact, the pretty Henry Longfellow was the only non-duck we passed by.

Red Sox Nathan

Then there was Red Sox Nathan. Yuck. Go Tigers!

Swan Boat

Back on dry ground, I caught this large swan boat sailing around Boston Public Garden.

John S. Damrell

After further walking, I ended up on the waterfront, where I found the city fireboat John S. Damrell. She was built in Kingston, Ontario on the St. Lawrence River.

Michael B. Meli

The small Michael B. Meli also showed up.

Fort Warren

At the docks near the Aquarium, there were a few more. Fort Warren was this one’s name.

Majesty

The Majesty was far more majestic, however.

Regency

The third one in the row was Regency.

Liberty Clipper

And then across the slip was the Liberty Clipper.

Liberty Clipper

Good looking boat. She must do cruises since the pulled out a few minutes later.

Rita

As did Rita. Unfortunately Rookie didn’t show up this time.

Godzilla

Last but not least, the Godzilla speedboat. Yeah…

Anyway, that concludes my Boston adventures. I decided not to include all the historical sites like I did in my Philly post, but I did see them.

So, I do have one more (short) post to come from this coastal trip, and I will try to post it tomorrow. Stick around!

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