Great Lakes & Seaway Shipping News Archive

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* Report News

Stahl Continues

Tuesday afternoon the tug Roger Stahl passed upbound at the Soo Locks enroute to Superior, Wisconsin for the tow of the Michipicoten to Sarnia. The Roger Stahl made a quick stop at the Soo Warehouse and then proceeded to lock upbound in the MacArthur Lock.

The Stahl cleared the locks upbound around 4 p.m. and is expected in Duluth Wednesday evening. The Michipicoten tow is expected to depart on Friday.

Tuesday crews were hard at work in Fraser Shipyards preparing the Michipicoten for departure. Work included a fresh coat of Lower Lakes Towing gray paint on the hull.

Roger Stahl at the Soo Locks by Scott Best
Lower approach to the lock.
In the MacArthur Lock.
Stern view.

Work on the Michipicoten by Glenn Blaszkiewicz
New paint.
Another view.

Reported by: Scott Best and Glenn Blaszkiewicz

Barge Grounds in Manistee

The tank barge E-63, pushed by the tug Mark Hannah, spent most of Monday stuck in Manistee harbor. According to local media the barge grounded about 8:30 a.m. while attempting to leave Manistee with a load of brine destined for Ludington. The barge was drawing 16 to 17 feet at the time.

The barge was later pulled free about 9:30 p.m. with assistance from another tug.

Reported by: Tom Hynes

Pellet Terminal Move

The tug Ohio and barge Milwaukee delivered their first load to the new location of the pellet terminal Monday evening. By Tuesday morning they were loading again in Lorain for shipment to the CBT dock on Whiskey Island. It is expected to take 3-4 loads to move all of the equipment from Lorain to Cleveland.

Equipment after being offloaded.
Another view.
New conveyor system under construction.

Reported by:

Atlantic Superior Arrives

The Atlantic Superior arrived under the Duluth Aerial Bridge about 1:10 p.m. Tuesday afternoon. A crowd was on hand to welcome the Superior, on her first trip since returning from East Coast service.

Instead of going directly to DM & IR, she tied up at the Port Terminal.

Reported by: J. A. Baumhofer

Wooden Shoes for PM41

On April 13 the barge Pere Marquette 41 and tug Undaunted opened the 2003 season at Holland, MI. The barge was loaded with stone from Port Inland for the Brewer dock.

Captain Tom Dawes received the Honorary Wooden Shoes in a small ceremony Thursday, April 24 while loading pig iron at the Padnos dock. They were loading for Algoma Steel in the Soo.

The Undaunted and Pere Marquette 41 was also the first vessel into Holland for 2002 with a load of stone from Cedarville to the Brewer dock. No wooden Shoes were awarded that year.

Reported by: Bob Vande Vusse

Twin Ports Report

Two seldom-seen Canadian visitors were scheduled called at the Twin Ports on Tuesday. Nanticoke was due at the BNSF ore dock in Superior and Atlantic Superior was expected to load at the DMIR dock. Other Canadian callers included CSL Niagara loading at DMIR and Algolake due to load at Midwest Energy Terminal.

Also in port was the Kaye E. Barker, unloading stone at the CLM dock in Superior, Mesabi Miner, loading at BNSF, and the saltie Kapitonas A. Lucka, loading at the Cenex Harvest States elevator.

Today's traffic is scheduled to include Isolda arriving at AGP elevator in Superior. That would be AGP's first ship of the season, and possible the season's first grain cargo to be shipped from any elevator other than Harvest States. Also due at the port terminal today is the Fairload.

The saga of the Twin Ports ice jam appears to be over. Westerly winds on Sunday night blew the slowly shrinking mess to the Wisconsin shore. Inside the harbor, the wind nicely cleared the General Mills, Cargill and Lafarge slips and shepherded the ice into shallow water behind Park Point. Both Duluth and Superior entrances are now wide open.

Kaye E. Barker at Cutler Stone in Superior. Glenn Blaszkiewicz

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette News

The American Mariner arrived at the Marquette ore dock Tuesday morning and left with her load just after 8 pm. The Reserve is due early Wednesday morning. On Thursday the Kaye Barker will be bringing a load of coal to the Shiras Steam Plant, then will transfer to the upper harbor to take on ore. The John J. Boland is on the schedule for Friday.

American Mariner loading.
Bow view.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Saginaw Update

A trio of vessels called on the Saginaw River Tuesday morning, all unloading within view of each other. First in Was the CSL Tadoussac, who called at the Essroc Terminal in Essexville to unload clinker. This is the Tadoussac's third visit to the dock this season.

Next in was the McKee Sons - Invincible. The pair eased past the Tadoussac to lighter at the Sargent Dock in Essexville before continuing upriver to finish unloading at the Saginaw Rock Products Dock. The McKee Sons was headed for the Sixth Street Turning Basin shortly before 11pm to turn and head outbound.

The Sam Laud was the final inbound vessel. She entered the Bay Aggregates Dock stern first to unload. The Laud departed the dock and was outbound during the afternoon.

Also transiting the river Tuesday was the Tug Gregory J. Busch and Barge STC 2004. The pair were outbound from Carrollton early in the afternoon.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
CSL Tadoussac at Essroc.
Mckee Sons-Invincible passing the Tadoussac.
Mckee Sons head on.
Mckee Sons working toward the Sargent Dock.
Stern view.
Sam Laud pouring on the power.
Laud close up.
Sam Laud backing into the Bay Aggregates slip next to the Tadoussac.
Sam Laud seen under the boom of the McKee Sons.
Laud, McKee Sons and Tadoussac.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Cleveland Update

Cleveland was busy with stone and cement shipments on Tuesday. The Federal Hunter continued to offload at Dock 24 and may depart Tuesday evening.

The barge St. Marys II and tug Sea Eagle were unloading throughout the day at the Blue Circle dock on the river. The Alpena arrived off Cleveland about 4 p.m. and was assisted into the Lafarge dock by the G tug California.

The Kellstone barge and Palladino tug arrived about 4:30 p.m. and waited at Dock 20 for river traffic to clear before proceeding to its normal dock.

The Mississagi unloaded a partial cargo of stone at Dock 20 Tuesday morning and then continued upriver to the Cuyahoga Road Products dock to complete its unload. When the Mississagi departed Dock 20 at 10 a.m. the Maumee was entering the outer piers to take its place.

he Maumee unloaded stone at Dock 20 throughout the day and departed at 4 p.m. The Mississagi was downbound on the Cuyahoga at 5 p.m. with G tug assistance.

Mississagi entering the River.
Mississagi with Maumee in the background.
Mississagi under the Detroit Superior bridge.
Close up under the bridge.
Alpena slipping into the Lafarge terminal.
Casting off the tow line.
Tug California.
Tug Nancy Anne heading back to the water treatment plant.
Sam Laud close up.

Reported by: Rex Cassidy

Toronto News

The saltie Federal Polaris finished unloading late Monday and departed during the night. Her spot at the Redpath Sugar dock was taken over by the arrival Tuesday afternoon of the Polish saltie Warta.

Some additional McNally Construction Inc. equipment arrived in port Tuesday afternoon from the Welland Canal and was berthed at Pier 35 with the other McNally equipment involved in the deep-water cooling project.

The C & C Marine tug Patricia D. brought the crane barge Pitts Carillon over from Ontario Place to the Turning Basin Tuesday afternoon. The crane barge was involved in dredging the "Haida Channel" at Ontario Place last year. The Carillon remained at Ontario Place during the winter and its return to port must mean that the "Haida Channel" has been refilled.

Reported by: Gerry O.

St. Lawrence Seaway & River News

Expected to arrive in Montreal Wednesday is the navy ship HMCS Halifax . Her last port of call was Halifax and after the stop in Montreal she will head for Port Weller.

Entering the Seaway Tuesday afternoon for the first time under her current name was the Orna bound for Côte Ste. Catherine from Contrecoeur. The vessel is on charter to Canadian Forest Navigation (Canfornav) according to her funnel markings. Below St. Lambert lock, she slowed down to allow her fleet mate Milo to clear the lock. Both vessels were built in Japan in 1984 and are sister ships. The Orna is likely the first foreign-flag vessel to visit Côte Ste. Catherine during the 2003 season. She recently acquired the name Orna and the name was almost painted out on her bow, starboard side.

More new ships are expected to Great Lakes ports in less than a week. The chemical tanker Panam Flota will go to Clarkson, Thekla to Cleveland and Jana to Oshawa. Thekla and Jana are sister ships built in The Netherlands and are general cargo ships.

Reported by: René Beauchamp

Spar Jade in the Welland Canal

The following images were taken Tuesday morning onboard the Spar Jade in the Welland Canal. She was upbound from Hamilton enroute to load soybeans in Goderich for a thirty plus day voyage to Japan.

While the world sleeps the ships keep moving.
Passing under the Garden City Skyway and through the Homer Bridge.
Raising in Lock 3.
Under the Glendale Avenue Bridge.
Entering the flight locks.
The Bridge.
View from the Monkey's Island.
Raising in Lock 4.
Port Bridge Wing.
Name Board.
Entering Lock 5.
After raising just under 50 feet the line handlers look pretty small!
Preparing to enter Lock 7 with the vessel's Master Capt. Ajay Kumar looking on.
Safely in Lock 7.
Continuing her voyage to Goderich.

Reported by: Capt. Alain M. Gindroz

Today in Great Lakes History - April 30

The IRVIN L. CLYMER returned to service April 30, 1988 after a two season lay-up.

HOWARD HINDMAN (2) grounded heavily when her steering cable parted at Little Rapids Cut in the St. Marys River, April 30, 1969. Due to the extensive damage, she was sold later in May of that year to Marine Salvage Ltd., Port Colborne, Ont. for scrap.

The RED WING (2) tow arrived at Kaohsiung, Taiwan on April 30, 1987 for dismantling.

The steel-hulled bulk carrier SHENANGO was launched on April 30, 1909.

On 30 April 1842, the side-wheeler COMMODORE BARRIE collided with the schooner CANADA about 10 miles off Long Point in Lake Ontario. The COMMODORE BARRIE became disabled and then sank about an hour and a half later. Her passengers and crew were rescued by the CANADA.

On 30 April 1878, ST. LAWRENCE (2-mast wooden schooner, 93', 111 t, built in 1842 at Clayton, NY) was carrying timber when she caught fire from the boiling over of a pot of pitch which was being melted on the galley stove. The vessel was well out on Lake Michigan off Milwaukee. The fire spread so rapidly that the crew had no time to haul in canvas, so when they abandoned her, she was sailing at full speed. The lifeboat capsized as soon as it hit the water, drowning the captain and a passenger. The ST. LAWRENCE sailed off ablaze and was seen no more. The rest of the crew was later rescued by the schooner GRANADA.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Roger Stahl departs for Superior

Gaelic's big tug Roger Stahl departed about 10 a.m. from the Gaelic yard on the Rouge River in Detroit. The tug is bound for Superior, Wisconsin to pick up the Michipicoten.

Captain John Wellington, chief engineer Jim Storen and their crews checked all the tugs equipment and gear, the big EMD GM diesels came to life, lines let go and headed out to another heavy tow.

The Michipicoten (ex Elton Hoyt II), will be picked up at Frasier shipyard in Superior and towed to Sarnia Ontario to be reflagged Canadian.

The tow is expected to depart Duluth on Friday.

AB Bobby Frederickson cleaning the pilot house windows to prepare the Stahl for departure.
Captain John Wellington gives the order to cast off the lines.
The tug Roger Stahl outbound the Rouge River at the Fort Street Bridge with the Stars and Stripes flying high.

Reported by: Bill Hoey

Barging of Lorain Pellet Terminal

Monday morning the Great Lakes Towing tug Ohio and barge Milwaukee were in Lorain preparing to move the first of the large components from the Lorain Pellet Terminal to the Cleveland Bulk Terminal.

The cargo loaded on Monday is the largest part of the ship loader, which takes up almost the entire length of the 172-foot long barge.

Great Lakes Towing is managing the barge portion of the move for the company Tetra Tech, who is the prime contractor on the project. Loading was completed Monday afternoon and the tug and barge departed. They arrived in Cleveland Monday night and were expected to head back to Lorain for another trip Tuesday morning.

Ohio and barge Milwaukee arriving at 8:00 a.m. Monday morning, under the command of Captain Brian Rogers.
Docked for loading.
Components loaded.
Loading continues.

Reported by: Jerry Popiel

Frantz Update

Monday morning the Joseph H. Frantz remained low in the Toledo Shiprepair drydock and appears that she may be in drydock for several more days.

Crews were working on the stack of the vessel, installing the silver "S"' on each side of the stack. There stack is still the painted with the yellow band but will likely be painted over to the green color. Her hull is painted in a darker reddish brown color scheme. Her name remains "Joseph H. Frantz" in freshly painted white color letter on the bow and stern of the vessel.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Unusual Traffic at the Soo

Traffic at the Soo Locks Monday was highlighted by a number or rare or unusual vessels. Several CSL vessels were in the river all day, starting with the CSL Niagara and Atlantic Superior upbound. The CSL Laurentien and Atlantic Erie were downbound Monday. Other unusual traffic included; Capt Henry Jackman upbound for Thunder Bay to load potash and the Wilfred Sykes downbound with a load of ore from Marquette.

Wilfred Sykes entering the Mac Lock.
Stern view below the lock.
Capt. Henry Jackman upbound Mac Lock.
Atlantic Superior approaching the Poe Lock.
Stern view entering the lock.
Spar Opal downbound below the Mac Lock.
Spar Opal and Algolake pass at West Pier.
Tug Missouri after assisting the Spar Opal.

Reported by: Scott Best

Saginaw News

The Pathfinder-Dorothy Ann made her first visit of the season to the Saginaw River on Monday unloading at the Bay Aggregates Dock. The pair arrived during the early morning hours and was outbound during the afternoon. This was the first cargo of the season for the Bay Agg. Dock.

Todd Shorkey
Dorothy Ann-Pathfinder downbound from Bay Aggregates.
Stern view.
Dorothy Ann close up.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Goderich Update

The Algosteel loaded salt on Thursday, departing for Milwaukee. On Friday, the Canadian Navigator was helped into position at the salt mine by the tugs, and watched by the many fishermen out on a lovely afternoon. The Algorail was in port on Sunday, loading salt for Chicago.

Reported by: Lisa Stuparyk

Detroit Traffic

tug James A Hannah & barge Hannah 5101 loading asphalt at the Marathon Dock in the Rouge River.
Close up of tug.
tug Karen Andrie and barge A 397 tied up at Zug Island waiting for the Hannah 5101 and James A Hannah to finish loading at Marathon.
James R Barker turning into Zug Island Ore Dock.
Stern view.
Tankerman extraordinaire Bob Seech busy tankering the barge Allied Chemical No. 2 at the MMT Dock in the Rouge River.
tug Roger Stahl departing the Rouge River for the upper Lakes.
Stern view.
Faust Marine Corp. tug Cormorant outbound the Rouge River to pick up a barge.
tug Patricia Hoey pushing the barge Allied Chemical No 12 from the MMT Dock in the Rouge River to the Allied Chemical Dock in the old Rouge River.
James R Barker unloading at Zug Island.
barge Allied Chemical No 12 at her dock in the old Rouge River.
H Lee White unloading coal on Zug Island in the Rouge Shortcut Canal.
Stern view.
Faust tug Cormorant and barge inbound the Rouge River.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls

Cleveland Update

Sunday fleet mates the Fred R. White Jr., Reserve, Earl W. Oglebay and David Z. Norton were all in Cleveland. The White was fitting out to go to Cedarville and finally off the ISG shuttle.

In port Monday was the tug Frank Palladino and barge Kellstone, Southdown Challenger and the Federal Hunter at the port docks.

Reported by: Bill Kloss

Welland Canal Traffic

Below are images taken Monday by Bill Bird.
Griffon at anchor at Port Robinson at the entrance to the old channel of the canal (discontinued after the bypass was built).
Workboat used to service buoys.
Quebecois upbound at Port Robinson.
Entering the Welland bypass.
Stephen B. Roman approaching Lock 1.
Birchglen passing through Homer Bridge downbound.
Birchglen clear of Bridge on her way to Lock 2.
Algowood upbound clear of Lock 1.
Algowood approaching Lock 2.

Below are images taken Sunday by Eric Holmes.
CSL Tadoussac upbound at Lock 7.
Another view.
Vancouverborg downbound at Lock 4 & 3.
Chios Pride leaving Lock 3 .

Hamilton Update

The Spar Jade, which had been in Hamilton since April 24, transited the Burlington Ship Canal at 6:30 p.m. heading for the Welland Canal.

The tug John Spence and barge McAsphalt 401 were moored at Pier 23 and had almost finished their unloading. The Navitas Prelude was moored at Pier 12.

Reported by: Patricia Burgon

Toronto Update

The cement carrier English River came into port early Monday and unloaded its cargo; departing around 10 p.m. The ferry Thomas Rennie went into service Monday for the first time this season. The smaller ferry William Inglis was taken out of service for maintenance.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Monday at Clarkson

Monday morning the Vega Desgagnes was at the Petro Canada dock. She arrived overnight Sunday with cargo from the Seaway. As of late Monday afternoon she was still discharging.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Federal Hudson on the Seaway

Monday afternoon the Federal Hudson was upbound passing Brockville.

Close up.

Reported by: Keith Giles

St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

Hickory WLB-212 off Varennes, April 24.
Orna, Lanoraie Anchorage, waiting for a berth at Contrecoeur, April 25.
Orna at Lanoraie Anchorage, April 25.
Cabot downbound from Montréal passing anchored Orna April 25.
Mate Zalka downbound from Montréal, April 26.
Federal Oshima downbound from Montréal, April 27.
Stern view.
Algoway upbound for Seaway, April 27.
Cast Progress downbound from Montréal, April 27.
Federal Hudson upbound to Montréal, April 27.
Stern view.
Enchanter assisted by Ocean Jupiter docking at Contrecoeur no.2, April 28.
Kaptan Burhanettin Isim, Turkish flag RORO upbound for Montréal berth 66, April 28.

Reported by: Marc Piché

Active and Laid-up Boats in Manistee and Ludington

On Sunday the Captain Ralph Tucker was in Manistee as was the tug Mark Hannah with a barge that appeared to be the E-63. Ludington had no commercial traffic in port but it appears that several fish tugs are active.

City of Milwaukee in Manistee.
Stern View.
Unidentified fish tug in Ludington.
Manistee harbor looking south. Martin Marietta on left, PCA paper mill on right. Ralph Tucker was docked just out of view to left.
Mark Hannah and barge from a distance.
Another distant view.
Captain Ralph Tucker at General Chemical dock.
Spartan awaiting its fate in Ludington.

Reported by: Tom Hynes

Lake Superior on Lake Erie

The following images were taken onboard Fednav's Lake Superior on a voyage from Detroit Pilot Station to Lock 7 on April 27 and 28. Lake Superior is bound for Ghent, Belgium with a cargo of grain loaded in Thunder Bay. This efficient carrier was built in 1981 at the Cockerill Yards at Hoboken, Belgium and was originally named Federal Thames until 1995.

She is one of four sisters built at the same yard all measuring 222,48m x 23,13m (729' 11" x 75" 10") and is registered at Majuro in the Marshall Islands.

Lake Superior and her sisters Lake Ontario, Lake Erie and Lake Michigan are a regular sight on the Great Lakes having traded here for over twenty years since their commissioning.

Interestingly, on Sunday morning the saltwater vessel Lake Superior met the lake vessel Atlantic Superior on Lake St. Clair.

Atlantic Superior upbound on the Detroit River as seen from Windsor.
Livingston Channel viewed through the sun screen on a bright spring day.
Philip R Clarke upbound at South East Shoal.
Engine and Bow Thruster console. Combinator on full ahead as we enter open waters.
Twelve hours to Port Colborne.
Bridge deck.
No doubt about her former identity.
Fednav logo on the funnel.
Conference Room.
Another view.
Sparkling hallway. The crew takes great pride in keeping this vessel ship-shape.
This sign is displayed at every door through out the ship.
Poop Deck. Southdown Challenger can be seen on the horizon.
Prommenade Deck and lifeboat.
Main Deck.
Another view.
Anchor chain.
Port Colborne dead ahead 148 nautical miles away.
Full sea speed.
Setting sun behind the Marshall Islands flag.
Another day draws to and end for the good ship Lake Superior.
We reach Port Colborne and another day begins..
Entering the Welland Canal.
Lake Superior's finest! Chief Officer Gregorz Banasik (left) and Capt. Miroslaw Kosmala (right).
Capt. Kosmala proudly showing off his vessel in the current issue of Know Your Ships.
Departing Lock 8.
Closing up astern.
Passing by the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Griffon and the Cuyahoga at Wharf 12.
Cuyahoga loading stone.
Birds eye view.
Time to enjoy a Polish breakfast.
Chief Officer and AB.
Under Bridge 11 at Allanburg.
Through the old Guard Gate area approaching Lock 7.
Algomarine secured at the Tin Shed waiting for traffic to clear.

Reported by: Capt. Alain M. Gindroz

Today in Great Lakes History - April 29

On April 29, 1975, the Sam Laud entered service.

Launched this date in 1976 was the a) SOODOC (2)

On April 29, 1977 while inbound at Lorain, the IRVING S. OLDS hit a bridge on the Black River which extensively damaged her bow, tying up traffic for several hours.

A fender boom fell on the GEORGE M. HUMPHREY's pilot house in the Poe Lock at the Soo in 1971.

On 29 April 1865, L.D. COWAN (wooden schooner, 165 t, built in 1848 at Erie, PA) was driven ashore near Pointe aux Barques, MI in a storm and wrecked.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Seaway hoping for a better grain crop

Canadian port and maritime officials are joining prairie farmers in praying for a good grain crop this year.

"If we had to weather a third bad year in a row, it would be a real disaster," said Dennis Johnson, chief executive officer of the Thunder Bay Port Authority. "I can't even comprehend the result."

Port operators, grain handling companies, elevator workers, vessel owners, sailors, marine suppliers and St. Lawrence Seaway employees all have a financial stake in how much grain is moved by water to domestic buyers and overseas customers. Reduced grain shipments also mean fewer vessels available to backhaul iron ore to steel mills in Ontario and the United States, which means higher shipping rates for steel manufacturers.

No one knows how this year's crop will turn out and what the demand for shipping will be in autumn, but one thing is certain: not much grain will move during the first few months of the 2003 navigation season.

If the board's projections for the rest of the crop year are correct, and if shipments of other grains continue at a similar pace, total eastbound shipments for the 2002-03 crop year will end up at 2.9 million to 3.4 million tonnes. That would make the current crop year the worst in the 50-year history of the Seaway system. The previous low was 5.2 million tonnes in 1988-89, following the 1988 drought.

Shipments have averaged 6.4 million tonnes annually over the past five years.

Back in Thunder Bay's heyday in the early 1980s, annual shipments out of the port routinely exceeded 15 million tonnes. However, changes in world grain demand during the past decades, in particular the loss of the former Soviet Union market and reduced sales to Europe, resulted in a shift in Canada's export program to the West Coast.

Grain companies have closed Thunder Bay terminals over the past decade, and the number of full-time grain workers at the port has dropped accordingly, from a high of 1,500 to 350 last year.

Poor prairie crops in the last couple of years have only added to the port's woes.

"We still have huge overcapacity," said Johnson. "We've got all these terminals here and I don't see how they can sustain themselves if we have another bad year."

Reported by: William Blair

Frantz in Dry Dock

Sunday morning the Joseph H. Frantz remained in the Toledo Shiprepair Dry Dock. The dock remained empty of water indicating that the Frantz would remain through the weekend and could stay for several more days.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Marquette Update

The Herbert Jackson arrived in Marquette on Sunday and took a load of ore. The Wilfred Sykes was expected late Sunday night. The John J. Boland is due early Monday morning, the American Mariner on Tuesday, and the Reserve possibly on Wednesday.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

News from Menominee

On Friday evening, the new Palmer Johnson-built yacht, Milk and Honey, arrived in Menominee for fit-out. She is currently docked at the K&K Warehouse Dock directly behind the Viking I. It is not known at this time who will do the fit-out work on her, or where the actual work will be done.

On Saturday afternoon, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mobile Bay and her barge arrived in the bay off Menominee to do maintenance on the channel marker buoys. All three channel marker buoys are now in place.

Bow view of Milk and Honey.
Stern view.
Another view.
The old (Viking I) and the new (Milk & Honey) together at K&K .
Mobile Bay in the bay of Green Bay off Menominee replacing buoys.

Reported by: Dick Lund

Wreck in Milwaukee

Low water levels this spring have exposed additional sections of a local wreck in Milwaukee. Located on the Kinnickinnic River, the wooden tug Edward E. Gillen sits in the mud across from the Gillen Company headquarters.

The 73' long tug was built in Sturgeon Bay, WI in 1928 and removed from documentation as "dismantled' in April 1964.

Resting in the mud.
Gillen dock in the background.
Stern showing the rudder post.
On board looking towards the bow.
Wooden construction shown at the bow.
Looking down river towards the Cemex Cement silos.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Conquest in Grand Haven

The Southdown Conquest came into Grand Haven, Mich. mid afternoon Sunday. It was viewed by many people walking the Boardwalk on a fine Spring Day.

Reported by: Don Geske

Alpena News

The J.A.W Iglehart came into port Sunday evening. It loaded cement for Heron Bay, ON. This will be its first trip up to Lake Superior for the season. Waiting for the departure of the Iglehart was the Steamer Alpena. It arrived at the loading dock around 10:30 p.m. on Sunday.

The Jacklyn M barge Integrity is due into port on Monday afternoon.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Saginaw Report

The Frontenac departed the Essroc Terminal early Saturday morning after unloading clinker. She backed out to Light 12 of the Entrance Channel before turning around and proceeding out to the lake.

Checking back to wait for the Frontenac to make her turn was the inbound Algorail. The Algorail continued upriver to the Sargent Dock in Zilwaukee to unload. She was outbound Saturday evening passing through Downtown Bay City around 6:30 p.m.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
Algorail downbound at Liberty Bridge.
Another view.
Stern view.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Beeghly Departs the Rouge

Sunday morning the Charles M. Beeghly finished unloading at Rouge Steel in Detroit and departed.

Departing Rouge Steel.
Lining up for the Dix Ave. Bridge.
Outbound for the Detroit River.

Island Gem Loads

Sunday the saltie Island Gem, flying the flag of Greece, was loading coils of steel at the former McLouth Steel dock in Ecorse, MI. This is the second cargo loaded at the site for export.

Reported by: Marv Hoffmeyer

Calumet Unloads

Calumet delivered stone to Osborne in Fairport, OH Thursday evening. Following normal procedure she lightered first at the Osborne North Dock. The Calumet then moved upstream to the south dock, on the turning basin, to finish the unload at the concrete plant.

Lightering at the North dock .
Close up.
Moving upstream to finish the unload, bow thruster operating .
Lining up at the South dock on the turning basin - steam from the steering engine as the boom comes out .
Swinging out the boom.

Reported by: Dave Merchant and Greg Stephens

Erie Update

The Philip R. Clarke became the first salt boat of 2003 into Erie on Sunday. The Clarke arrived at about 3 a.m. with salt from Fairport Harbor. The vessel turned in the harbor to tie up at the Mounfort Terminal, and unloaded in about 6 hours. The Clarke was outbound from Erie at about 9:30 a.m. Sunday morning.

An hour before the Clarke departed, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bramble left after replacing buoys in Erie Harbor.

The J.S. St. John arrived in Erie early Sunday morning. This is the shortest time the St. John has spent in drydock over the past three years. Sunday morning the vessel was tied up at the Old Ore Dock and appeared to be getting ready to go out and dredge Lake Erie.

Clarke at the Mounfort Terminal, 8 a.m. Sunday.
Bramble Outbound at 8:15.
Away from dock at 9:20.
Close Up.
Stern View.
Clarke passes the fishermen enjoying a beautiful Sunday morning.
J.S. St. John at the Old Ore Dock.
Day Peckinpaugh laid up across from the St. John.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Welland Canal Update

Sunday the carferry Jiimaan was moved from the dry dock at Port Weller Dry Docks and placed at the fit out wall.

Pictures taken Friday by Jeff Thoreson
Algowood upbound below Lock 3. In ballast for a Lake Erie port.
Sea Eagle II/St. Mary's Cement II downbound below Lock 3. In ballast bound for Bowmanville to load.
Passing the Algowood.
Algowood slides along the North Wall of Lock 3.
Looking Down the Deck.
St. Mary's Cement downbound above Lock 3.
Tug Sea Eagle II.
Stern view of the Sea Eagle II/St. Mary's Cement II.
CSL Niagara upbound above Lock 1. Cargo of Iron Ore for Toledo.
CSL Niagara stern view.
Atlantic Huron in Port Weller.
Atlantic Superior tied up at Wharf 2, the Port Weller Sand Dock. Destined for Duluth to load for Nanticoke.
View from across the canal.
Crew Members on the bow.
Stern View of the Tarnowska.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt and Jeff Thoreson

Toronto Report

Saturday the Algomarine arrived with a cargo of salt. She unloaded and departed before midnight.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Kingston News

The Kinston area was busy Sunday as there were several ships at anchor until noon when the American Narrows were reopened to navigation after closing due to fog. The Rixta Oldendorf, Cedarglen, Federal St. Laurent and Jo Spirit were all at anchor eastbound.

The CCGS Simcoe was in Kingston Sunday night to work on aids in the Upper and Lower Gap areas. The tanker Saturn went to Oswego that afternoon and the English River departed Bath with cement for Toronto.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Work aboard the Samuel Risley

Photos taken from the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Samuel Risley as she was working buoys in Thunder Bay and transiting from Thunder Bay to Parry Sound, Ontario. April 24 and 25.

The light at the entrance to the Mission river, Thunder Bay, Ontario.
Lifting the SP barge off the deck.
Preparing to place the SP barge in the water.
The SP barge on the way to repositioning some buoys.
Deacon working on his Steering Testimonial.
Helena Oldendorff in Whitefish Bay.
CSL Laurentien upbound at light 26.
Another view of CSL Laurentien.
Presque Isle downbound toward the Poe lock.
Island Gem at Algoma.
Makeevka upbound from the MacArthur lock.
Another view of the Makeevka.
A train waiting for the ships to pass so the bridge can be lowered.
Missouri in the Poe upbound to meet the Helena Oldendorff.
“Detroit Angie” and a friend at the Soo locks.
One of the linesmen at the MacArthur lock.
Curious onlookers.
More curious onlookers.
USCGC Buckthorn at the bottom of the Rock Cut.
Another view of the Buckthorn loading.
Roger Blough upbound at Lime Island.
Another view of the Roger Blough.

April 26 in Parry Sound. The Risley arrived in Parry Sound early in the morning to load stores, lube oil and buoys. Because of the extreme ice conditions this year the buoy programs (ATON) are lagging.
The supplier loads food into a basket for us.
A basket of grub comes over the rail.
Guiding the food basket into the Stores hatch.
Grub goes here. Waaay down in the bowels of the ship – pardon the pun.
A load of buoys on deck ready for the first trip of the spring.
New style, self-contained buoy lamps. Lantern, solar panels, batteries all-in-one.
The new lamps aren’t small but they are compact compared to the old system.
Even smaller, self-contained lamps. These are for very small buoys.
Less than a foot high.
Old style lamps are still in use. This is about 2 feet high and does not contain battery or solar panel..
Buoys on the dock waiting for the next trip..

Reported by: Paul Beesley

New Tolls, New Security for Mackinaw Bridge

The Mackinac Bridge Authority is gearing up for a season of improvements that will extend the life of the Mackinac Bridge with an $8 million painting contract and implementation of a new, additional $1 million security system. The new security system includes more cameras, motion detectors and alarms strategically placed throughout the structure to deter potential intruders from gaining access.

"The bridge is almost 50 years old. After all these years, the layers of paint need to be removed and reapplied to preserve the integrity of the structure," said MBA Administrator Bob Sweeney. "We want Michigan's prominent landmark to be around for another 50 years."

The painting project, scheduled to begin in May, will last throughout the season and is part of a series of painting contracts totaling $75 million over the next several years. The current contract includes extensive paint removal and repainting of the bridge.

"As for the new security system, it'll enable us to see many different areas of the bridge,” said Sweeney. "We'll be able to monitor activities around the clock from more vantage points."

Effective May 1, 2003, a new toll structure will help pay for the needed improvements:
$1.25 per axle for passenger vehicles;
$1.50 per vehicle for commuters;
$2.00 per axle for motor homes; and
$3.00 per axle for all other vehicles (including trucks and buses).

The Bridge Authority voted in December to give commuters a 40 percent discount per crossing. Commuter cards or tokens can be purchased in $36 increments. More information is available from the MBA at (906) 643-7600.

Reported by: Dave Helwig

Weekly Updates

The weekly updates have been uploaded.
Click here to view

Today in Great Lakes History - April 28

The 660 ft. forward section of the a) LEWIS WILSON FOY (b) OGLEBAY NORTON) was launched April 28,1977.

LAKE WABUSH (b) CAPT. HENRY JACKMAN) was christened and launched April 28, 1981

On April 28, 1971 while upbound from Sorel, Que. for Muskegon, MI with a load of pig iron, LACHINEDOC (2) struck Rock Shoal off Little Round Island in the St. Lawrence River and was beached.

On April 28, 1906 the J. PIERPONT MORGAN was launched.

April 28, 1897 - The F&PM (Flint & Pere Marquette) Steamer No. 1, bound from Milwaukee for Chicago ran ashore just north of Evanston. She released herself after a few hours.

The barge LITTLE JAKE was launched on 28 April 1875 at East Saginaw, MI. She was owned by William R. Burt & Co. Her dimensions were 132' x 29' x 9'.

On 28 April 1877, the steam barge C. S. BALDWIN went ashore on the reef at North Point on Lake Huron during a blinding snow storm. The barge was heavily loaded with iron ore and sank in a short time. The crew was saved by the Lifesaving Service from Thunder Bay Station and by the efforts of the small tug FARRAR.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Frantz in Dry Dock

Saturday morning the Joseph H. Frantz remained in drydock at Toledo Shiprepair. She was sitting low in the empty dry dock; the dry docking was originally scheduled for one day. It is possible that crews found an area of the hull that needed repair before she could sail or crews could be completing paint work.

The stack remains in the Oglebay Norton scheme. It will likely be Monday before she comes off the drydock.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Students and teachers evacuated from an icebound coastal freighter

Two Canadian Coast Guard helicopters from the CCGS Martha L Black are air lifting today 44 students and their four teachers from the ice jammed Nordic Express (210 feet Long -G.T. 1,748 tons-twin screws-engines-6,000 hp) a coastal passenger-freighter owned and operated by the Group Desgagnes.

The students from a Quebec City private school, Le Petit Seminaire de Québec had boarded the ship in Rimouski Qué. on April 14 on what was to be an educational eight days excursion to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. After an uneventful passage along the Quebec North-Shore, the Nordic Express became stranded on April 19 in hard rafted ice 25 km off the tiny village of Blanc- Sablonc QC near the western entrance of the straits of Belle-Isle approximately 700 miles east of Quebec City near the northern tip of Newfoundland.

Two Canadian Coast-Guard icebreakers, the CCGS Terry Fox and Martha L Black attempted all week to free the coastal freighter and to escort it to open water without success due mainly to the worse ice conditions recorded in thirty years and due to unfavourable prevailing winds from an easterly direction pushing in winter ice from the ''Straits'' then southerly winds jamming the ice to the north shore.

The decision to evacuate the stranded passengers was taken by the Groupe Desgagnes seeing that no improvements in the ice conditions were foreseen for the next days.

It was therefore decided that the Martha L Black was to come alongside the Nordic Express and off lift the students and their teachers by helicopter to the village of Vieux-Fort nearby Blanc-Sablonc. There, a chartered aircraft will fly the group to the Jean Lesage Airport in Quebec City later Saturday and in time to resume schooling on Monday morning.

Reported by: Frederick Frechette

Michipicoten Dry Docking

Worked continued on the Michipicoten at Fraser Shipyards in Superior, Wi. Her hull has been painted red, it is believed that this paint is a primer.

Michipicoten in dry dock.
Wide view.
Close up of bow.
John Sherwin in long term lay-up.
Canadian Progress departing through the Duluth Ship Canal.
Stern view.

Reported by: Glenn Blaszkiewicz

St. John Heads Home

The J.S. St. John was upbound in the Welland Canal Saturday from Heddle's docking at Hamilton. She was heading up under her own power. The tug Vigilant 1 followed the St. John upbound about an hour later.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt

More Updates

I ran out of time tonight, please check back tomorrow for more news and more pictures.

Today in Great Lakes History - April 27

On April 27, 1993 the WOLVERINE (4) ran aground on Surveyors Reef near Port Dolomite near Cedarville, MI and damaged her hull.

The ASHCROFT, upbound on Lake Erie in fog, collided with Interlake's steamer JAMES H. REED on April 27, 1944. The REED, fully loaded with ore, quickly sank off Port Burwell, Ont. with a loss of twelve lives. The ASHCROFT suffered extensive bow damage below the water line and was taken to Ashtabula, OH for repairs.

On April 27, 1973 the bow section of the SIDNEY E. SMITH, JR. was towed to Sarnia by the Malcolm tugs TABOGA and BARBARA ANN. The two sections of the hull were scuttled and land-filled to form a dock facing.

The WILLIAM P. SNYDER, JR. left Ecorse light on her maiden voyage April 27, 1912 for Duluth, MN to load iron ore.

On April 27, 1978 the TROISDOC (3) was downbound with corn for Cardinal, Ont. when she hit the upper end of the tie-up wall above Lock 2.

On April 27, 1980, after loading pellets in Duluth, the ENDERS M. VOORHEES stopped at the Seaway Dock to load a large wooden stairway (three sections) on deck which was taken to the AmShip yard at Lorain. It was used for an open house on the newly built EDWIN H. GOTT in 1979.

On April 27, 1953, the Reserve entered service.

On April 27, 1984, the Charles M. Beeghly struck the breakwall while departing Superior on her first trip since the 1981 season. The vessel returned to Fraser Shipyards in Superior for repairs.

On 27 April 1876, the Port Huron Times reported, "The steam barge MARY MILLS arrived up this morning and looks 'flaming'. Her owner said he did not care what color she was painted so long as it was bright red, and she has therefore come out in that color."

On 27 April 1877, the 40' 2-mast wooden schooner VELOCIPEDE left Racine, WI for Muskegon, MI in fair weather, but a severe squall blew in and it developed into a big storm. The little schooner was found capsized and broken in two off Kenosha, WI with her crew of 2 or 3 lost.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history.

Frantz Dry Docking

The Joseph H. Frantz remained in the Toledo Shiprepair drydock Friday morning. Her hull was being repainted in a darker reddish brown color. She no longer has the Oglebay Norton buff color painted on the bow and stern areas.

Her name remains "Joseph H. Frantz" painted in white letters on the bow yet. The name stands out against the dark reddish brown hull color scheme. The stack is still painted in the Oglebay color scheme but this may change within the next several days.

Friday morning the Frantz was sitting low in the drydock which meant she would likely remain there for most of the day Friday.

In the dry dock Thursday. Mike Nicholls

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Operation Taconite Concludes for Season

The Coast Guard's ice breaking "Operation Taconite" ended for another year at midnight Friday. The icebreaking duties covered by Operation Taconite each winter include escort and aid vessels transiting the ice from Lake Superior to the Straights of Mackinaw.

At midnight check points changed to summer operation. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Morrow Bay was downbound from the Soo on Thursday, The Canadian Coast Guard Ship Samuel Risley was downbound near Detour Friday.

Reported by: Scott Best

Officials ease security demands for Horne Ferry

Canadian and U.S. officials have backed off strict border security demands that would have put a 205-year-old Wolfe Island ferry service out of business.

Last week, ferry owner Bruce Horne told The Kingston Whig-Standard that his Wolfe Island-Cape Vincent ferry would go out of business if forced to abide by new Transport Canada security measures. The ferry carries 11 percent of the Kingston area's visitors from the United States.

Earlier this week, however, a ministry official phoned Horne to give him some good news.

“He said, based on national and international profile, they repealed the new enhanced enforcement measures and that’s pretty well all he said,” said Horne. “It would never have happened if the press hadn’t got in on it.”

He turned to the media after it appeared local politicians weren’t going to be able to sway federal bureaucrats.

On March 21, Transport Canada published new security measures that would have drained the coffers of small border ferry operators. To comply, they would have had to verify the identity of U.S.-bound passengers even though U.S. customs officers already do inbound security checks. Operators also would have had to ensure police officers patrolled their terminals at regular intervals while ferries were in operation.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Manitowoc museum opens new wing today

Up to 3,000 people are expected to tour the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in Manitowoc when the museum holds its grand reopening today.

The museum began a $6 million project in 2001 to expand the riverfront museum. Exterior work was finished last fall but interior work was still being completed this week.

Doors open at 9 a.m., but the real festivities begin at 10 a.m. with a historic aircraft flyover of a T-34 and a B-17, a presentation of colors by the U.S. Naval Reserve Color Guard from Green Bay, and many speakers, including Two Rivers City Manager Greg Buckley, Manitowoc Mayor Kevin Crawford, Adm. Hank McKinney of the U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation and Jim Ruffolo, the museum board president.

Mishicot native and U.S. Navy submariner Capt. Brian Wegner will participate in discussions on his duties, including naval nuclear power and submarine officer training that culminated in three nuclear submarine commanding officer tours.

The opening festivities will take place in front of the museum, effectively shutting to traffic the area from Seventh Street to Buffalo Street.

Before construction, about 60,000 people came through the museum annually. The museum estimates about 80,000 to 90,000 people now would make the trek to the facility.

Reported by: Jim Freed

Students remain stranded on icebound boat

Gusting winds frustrated efforts Thursday to free a boat carrying a group of Quebec high school students from thick ice in the St. Lawrence River.

"There's been no change," said Marie Gagnon, a spokeswoman for the Coast Guard in Quebec City. Rescuers "worked all day for basically nothing. When the wind is blowing it pushes the ice together. We don't expect progress today or tomorrow. But winds are expected to drop Saturday."

Forty-four Grade 10 students from Quebec City's Petit Seminaire were scheduled to return home Sunday from their annual field trip along the river. But their ship, the Nordic Express, has been caught in ice near Blanc Sablon in northeastern Quebec near Labrador since Saturday.

Reported by: Mary Helms

Milk and Honey Tow

The Palmer Johnson built yacht Milk and Honey was lowered to the water by 6:30 p.m. Thursday. The fish tug Leloand Lafond connected a tow line on the yacht and towed her to Menominee, Mi. solo. The tow arrived during night hours and then the Leloand Lafond returned to her dock in Algoma, Wi. about 6a.m. Friday. Crew members were Andy LaFond, Sr., Andy LaFond, Jr. and Darrell Jorgenson, all of Algoma.

Reported by: Wendell Wilke

Marquette Update

The GreatLakesTrader/Joyce VanEnkevort and Saginaw loaded ore in Marquette on Friday. No ships are expected on Saturday, but Sunday should see the Wilfred Sykes, followed very late by the Herbert C. Jackson. The John Boland is expected on Monday. The Kaye E. Barker will be bringing a load to the Shiras Steam Plant later in the month, and the James R. Barker will bring coal to the Presque Isle plant in early May.

Picture by: Lee Rowe
Saginaw loading.
Another view.
Bow view.
Great Lakes Trader.
Trader and Saginaw's bow.
Biw view at the dock.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Art Pickering

Alpena in Milwaukee

The Alpena arrived in Milwaukee Friday morning and departed in the late afternoon bound for St. Joe, MI.

Stern view.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Saginaw River Update

The Frontenac made her first visit of the season to the Saginaw River on Friday, stopping at the Essroc Terminal in Essexville to unload clinker. She is expected to be outbound sometime early Saturday morning.

The tenative schedule for the coming week calls for the McKee Sons to unload coal at Saginaw Rock on Sunday, the Pathfinder/Dorothy Ann to unload aggregate at the Burroughs Dock on Wednesday, and the J.A.W. Iglehart to unload cement at Lafarge on Thursday.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
Frontenac unloading at the Essroc Terminal in Essexville.
Another view.
View from Smith Park.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Rouge River Traffic

Below are images of traffic taken Friday on the Rouge River in Detroit.

Tug Maine, Mc Asphalt 401 & John Spence downbound approaching the Fort Street Bridge.
Close up.
Tug Maine.
Stern view.
Close up of tug.
Stern view.
Roger Stahl at the Gaelic Tugboat Co. Dock.
Tug Carolyn Hoey.
Stern view.
Rouge Steel Co. Switcher.
Kaye E Barker arriving at Rouge Steel with a load of pellets.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls

Busy Day in Ashtabula

Thursday was a busy evening for the Port of Ashtabula. The David Z. Norton and the Spruceglen were unloading at Pinney Dock. As soon as the Norton departed, its place was taken by the Algorail.

Reported by: Jeff Miller

Erie Report

Erie's fourth visitor of the year arrived on Friday. The Adam E. Cornelius arrived about 4 p.m. inbound with stone for the Mounfort Terminal. The vessel turned in the bay and docked bow out.

An hour behind the Cornelius was the Coast Guard Cutter Bramble arriving to replace winter buoys in Erie. The Bramble took on supplies at the Coast Guard station before tying up at the west side of Erie's public dock.

Bramble at the Public Dock.
Cornelius unloads.
Another view.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Toronto Update

The venerable Royal Canadian Yacht Club tender Hiawatha, now in its 108th season, began its service to the island Friday. The Soderholm tug Diver III and barge Y & F No. 1 departed port Friday afternoon.

During the past couple of days, the winter tarps were removed from the ferries Sam McBride and Trillium. A prankster or two untied the cruise vessel Wayward Princess during the night, and shifted it around the knuckle from its dock, then retied it.

The Queen City Yacht Club has had to press its tender Algonquin Queen back into service. The tender was retired last fall, but delays in the delivery of the new Algonquin Queen II from Newfoundland have forced the club to redocument the elderly vessel.

Federal Polaris remains at Redpath Sugar dock unloading. The charter vessel Pioneer Queen remains in slings under the atlas crane.

The Seaflight 2000 cross-lake hydrofoils Seaflight 1 and Seaflight 2 have been refloated at Pier 51. A frequent Toronto harbor visitor, the "Party Barge" Island Sauvage is being advertised for sale.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Dobrush on the Canal

The following images were taken Friday April 25 onboard the Dobrush from Lock 7 to Port Colborne. The vessel is in ballast destined for Thunder Bay to load grain for Morocco.

Dobrush was built in Shanghai, China in 1982 and is one of several sisters known as the Chinese Seaway Class. Two of her sisters include the regular callers Pintail and Peonia. She measures 196.47m x 23.00m (644' 07" x 75'06"). Dobrush flys the flag of the Ukraine and is registered at Mariuopol. This fine and sturdy vessel has visited the Great Lakes for two decades now originally as World Goodwill until 1985.

Dobrush in Lock 7.
Accommodation block.
The bridge.
Meeting the Pineglen.
Second Officer Aleksander Pastushenko from Mariuopol, Ukraine.
Meeting the downbound Algocape.
Stern view.
Ship's name spelled phonetically and with International Code of Signal Flags.
Comeaudoc as seen from the bridge wing.
Another sad view.
As seen from the pilot boat. Going, going....almost gone.

Reported by: Alain Gindroz

Spring Fitout at the Dossin Museum

Saturday, April 26 the Dossin Great Lakes Museum will host the Annual ‘Spring Fit Out’ meeting. The event will offer tours of the Sea Scout vessel the Gray Fox, a demonstration of the upcoming Live Web Cam and the chance to tour the museum.

Captain Frank Riley

Captain Riley Frank Ward Sr. of Farragut, Tn. died Sunday April 20, 2003. captain ward was born February 16, 1943 in Marion County Alabama to Thamon Lee Ward Sr. and Sarah Grey May Ward. He was a resident of Winfield, Alabama until his graduation from high school in 1961. Upon graduation from school, he signed on board the Edward L. Ryerson as a deck hand and according to Captain Mike Opack, of Duluth, the smile on his face did not fade for a long time. He rose through the ranks of the Inland Steel Fleet to become permanent master of the Joseph L. Block in 1980. He retired from the Block in 1997 as senior captain. Shortly thereafter, he joined the Inland Lakes Management Fleet and was involved with every part of the fleet operation including sailing as master of the Alpena, the flag ship of the fleet.

Captain Ward was a mentor to many young men coming up through the ranks and was always there to assist them and their families. Over the many years of his career, he deeply affected the lives of countless mariners and ordinary people. His caring advise helped many families through difficult times. He had a disarming quality that made anyone feel as ease in his presence. He had an intense pride in his family, his work and his garden and would tell anyone that he met about them.

In addition to his parents, his brother Thamon Lee Ward Jr. preceeded him in death.

Survivors include his wife Mrs. Carol Faye Mcdill Ward of Farragut; son Riley Frank Ward Jr. of Farragut; two step sons Michael (Sandra) Flamini of Knoxville and Charles Flamini of Chicago; 8 grandchildren; 2 great-grandchildred; sister Judy (Gene) Saundri of Iron River, Mi. and Naples, Fl; brother Thomas Binito Ward of Dunwoody, Ga; and sister-in-law Patricia Hogan Ward of Mariette, Ga.

Funeral services were held Friday at the Miles Funeral Home in Winfield, Alabama. James Wyers was the officiating minister. The eulogy was given by his ship mates. burial was at Winfield City Cemetery.

Reported by: Jerry Lawson

Sidney E. Smith Jr.

Erie, Pa. businessman Sidney E. Smith Jr., former President and later owner of The Erie Sand & Gravel Company, died Tuesday in Buffalo after a long illness. He was 77.

Mr. Smith served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, and was assigned throughout the Pacific Theater. After the war he earned a Great Lakes Master's License for unlimited tonnage, was appointed to the Great Lakes Commission, and served as President of Erie Sand & Gravel Company. As a company employee he had two vessels named after him, with the second vessel named Sidney E. Smith Jr. being involved in a tragedy. On June 4, 1972, while upbound near Port Huron, Michigan with a load of coal from Toledo, the Sidney E. Smith Jr. was rammed by the Parker Evans and sank within minutes. No crewmen were injured, but Mr. Smith lost his namesake vessel.

He purchased Erie Sand & Gravel in 1985, and under his leadership the company expanded it's horizons, and achieved great success, most of which Mr. Smith deserves the credit for. Among the accomplishments under Mr. Smith's ownership were the purchase of the Richard Reiss from American Steamship Company in 1992, and moving the corporate offices from the foot of Sassafras Street to their present location at the former Codan Terminal in late 1993. The Codan Terminal was later renamed the Mounfort Terminal.

Despite his busy schedule, Mr. Smith always had time to watch the Reiss dock in Erie, and was known for taking the ship's officers out to dinner after the Reiss laid up at the end of each season so they all could celebrate another season of safe, efficient sailing.

Mr. Smith retired as President and CEO of Erie Sand & Gravel in 2000, turning leadership of the company to his son, Sidney E. "Sandy" Smith III. The company was sold to Oglebay Norton in 2002, and Sandy Smith remains as Erie Sand's general manager and as a vice president at Oglebay Norton. Sidney E. Smith Jr. is also survived by a daughter, Jill Page Smith, and three grandchildren.

Away from Erie Sand & Gravel, Mr. Smith was president of the Erie Humane Society and also of the University Club of Erie. As a member of the Propeller Club in Buffalo, he received the Man of the Year award. He was also a member of the Lake Carriers Association.

A service will be held Saturday at 10 a.m. at the Burton Funeral Home, 602 W. 10th Street in Erie. Memorials may be made to the Erie Humane Society, 418 W. 38th Street, Erie, Pa., 16508; St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, 1070 W. Dutch Road, Fairview PA 16415, or the charity of the donor's choice.

With the passing of Sidney E. Smith Jr., the Great Lakes community has lost another of the truly great gentlemen involved with the industry.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Today in Great Lakes History - April 26

ALGOWEST was launched April 26, 1982.

Sea trials were conducted April 26, 1984 on Lake Ontario for the CANADIAN RANGER.

An unfortunate incident happened on the SEWELL AVERY as four crew members were injured, one critically, when a lifeboat winch housing exploded shortly after a lifeboat drill in 1978.

CANADOC was launched April 26, 1961.

BENSON FORD (1) was launched in 1924.

In 1982, carferry service from Frankfort, MI ended forever when railroad service to that port was discontinued and the remaining boats (Arthur K. Atkinson, Viking, and City of Milwaukee) were laid up. City of Milwaukee is being preserved as a museum ship by the Society for the Preservation of the City of Milwaukee

On 26 April 1902, M.P. BARKLOW (wooden schooner, 104', 122 gt, built in 1871 at Perry, OH), loaded with salt, was anchored off S. Bass Island in Lake Erie to ride out a gale. Nevertheless she foundered and four lives were lost, the skipper, his wife, their son and one crewman.

On 26 April 1926, THOMAS GAWN (2-mast wooden schooner-barge, 171', 550 gt, built in 1872 at Lorain, OH as a 3-mast schooner) sprang a leak and sank at River Rouge, MI in the Detroit River. The wreck was removed the following month and abandoned. She had a 54 year career.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history.

Pellet Terminal Deadline

Officials with the company tearing down the Former Lorain Pellet Terminal say they are not sure if they can finish the work by the city's deadline, and could be charged with a $7000 fine for each day they're late according to the Chronicle Telegram .

Tera Tech CR Inc. is removing equipment at the former terminal and is to move it to Whiskey Island on Cleveland's lakefront. The city of Lorain purchased the 20 acre site last year intending to redevelop it.

The city has set a dead line of May 1 for the terminal to be moved.

Reported by: Ned Gang

Atlantic Superior Upbound

The Atlantic Superior continued upbound on Thursday. About 1:30 p.m. the Superior was departing the Iroquois Lock.

She is due in Duluth early next week to load a cargo of taconite at DMIR. That cargo is destined for Nanticoke's Stelco plant.

Superior upbound.
Another view.
"Atlantic" on the bow.
Close up of accommodations block.
Stern view.

Reported by: Jeff Thompson

Port of Indiana's first saltie loads export steel

The Port of Indiana opened its international shipping season Wednesday with a welcome change -- the saltie Milo arriving to load the region’s first shipment of export steel in two years.

The Milo loaded 17,500 metric tons of hot-rolled steel coils for shipment to Belgium. The coils were made at International Steel Group's mill in East Chicago, Indiana. The vessel was scheduled to depart Thursday night.

In 2002 no steel coils were exported from Burns Harbor. Officials say as many as four export cargoes could be shipped this season.

For years, American steel producers have complained about foreign countries dumping steel into the United States, causing the American steel industry to suffer. But on Wednesday, local and state officials were thrilled to export the coils.

“It’s a great occasion that we’re exporting steel,’’ said Ken Massengill, chairman of the Indiana Port Commission. “I don’t care where it goes as long as it’s made in America.’’

Ian Hirt, general manager of marine terminals located at the port, said one reason steel exports are expected to increase is because the U.S. dollar has weakened. “The dollar is down and our steel is more attractive overseas,’’ Hirt said. He said steel exports occur in cycles and when the value of the dollar weakens the amount of steel shipped across the seas often increases.

He also credits ISG’s philosophy for operating with lower costs and says it puts the company in a better position to sell products globally.

“It brings a lot of jobs to Northwest Indiana. It’s just a great time to be here,’’ Massengill said.

Richard J. Morris, vice president and general manager of ISG’s Indiana Harbor plant, said the company continues to look for opportunities to export its steel coils but said the industry’s market conditions play an important role.

“We recognize that it’s a global market,’’ he said. 'Wherever the deals are, that’s where we’re going to be. We’ll continue to take advantage of some exports. The key is to be in a position to do it effectively.’’

Reported by: Ron Jackson

Oshima Departs

The Federal Oshima departed the old McLouth Steel Dock in Trenton, Mi about 10 a.m. Thursday. She was assisted by two Great Lakes Towing tugs.

After nearly two weeks of loading processed coil steel it is reported to be heading to China.

Reported by: Robert Burns

Twin Ports Report

Major docks in the Twin Ports are starting to see a steady stream of vessels.

Around the harbor Thursday, Paul R. Tregurtha was loading coal at Midwest Energy Terminal, tug W.N. Twolan was at Hallett 8 in Superior with a barge of lumber from Thunder Bay, Lee A. Tregurtha was due at BNSF ore dock and Armco was due to unload stone at the CLM dock in Superior.

After some gaps in its schedule caused by ice delays, Midwest Energy Terminal once again has a full schedule. Indiana Harbor is due there today, to be followed by Canadian Progress on Saturday, and Canadian Transport, Canadian Enterprise, Walter J. McCarthy Jr. and Columbia Star on Sunday, and Kaye E. Barker due to load Monday for Marquette.

The DMIR dock in Duluth is solidly booked through the end of the month, with many of the vessels being Canadian. Arthur M. Anderson is due today with stone; CSL Laurentien is due Saturday; Atlantic Erie and Frontenac are due Sunday; Cason J. Callaway is expected Monday with stone; Atlantic Superior and CSL Niagara are both due Tuesday; and H. Lee White is scheduled to make a rare appearance on April 30.

In Two Harbors, the Joe Block, Oglebay Norton and St. Clair are again becoming regulars this season. The Block loaded Thursday, Oglebay Norton is due there today, and St. Clair is expected Sunday.

Over the past couple days, the ice field off the Twin Ports has again spread across the mouth of the Duluth ship canal. By Thursday it was about half a mile wide. However, there was no wind pressure on it and vessels seemed to be passing through it without hindrance. Armco steamed through it late Thursday afternoon with no apparent difficulty, followed by Paul R. Tregurtha a short time later.

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette Update

The H. Lee White completed unloading her stone cargo and moved to the ore dock in the upper harbor Thursday afternoon. The Charles M. Beeghly brought in a load of coal, and will then take on ore.

The Middletown, expected on Friday, cancelled. The Great Lakes Trader and Saginaw will both be in on Friday, with the Herbert Jackson and Wilfred Sykes expected on Saturday.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Green Bay Update

The Rebecca Lynn departed Green Bay Thursday morning about 6 a.m. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mobile Bay was working in the channel putting in the summer Aids to Navigation. The American Republic arrived in Green Bay just after 10 a.m. with coal from Sandusky for Georgia Pacific.

Pere Marquette 41 at the Fox River Dock.
Night shot unloading.
Rebecca Lynn/ A410 tied up at Koch Materials.
Close Up.
Integrity at Lafarge.
American Republic arrives Green Bay.
Stern shot.

Reported by: Jason Leino

Sturgeon Bay Update

The latest yacht built by Palmer Johnson at Sturgeon Bay is the Milk and Honey. The 112-foot yacht remained on a section of the dry dock waiting to be launched. Standing by were Selvick's tug Escort II and the yard's tug Bayship.

The fish tug Lelond Lafond (LaFond Fisheries, Andy LaFond, Sr.), of Algoma, WI. was called by the owner of the yacht Milk and Honey to come up and tow the new yacht to Marinette/Menominee for fitout. The Lelond Lafond departed Algoma at 2 p.m. and arrived at the shipyard around 4 p.m. to take the tow. With the yacht still up on the blocks, the Lafond went dockside waiting.

Reported by: Wendell Wilke

Mariner Moved

The Canadian Mariner was pulled from her berth Wednesday afternoon in Toronto and rafted alongside Canadian Provider. The two ships are now just around the knuckle from Canadian Venture and Seaway Queen.

Reported by: Bill Bird

Alpena Update

The J.A.W Iglehart came into port Wednesday evening to load cement at Lafarge. It is headed for South Chicago.

The Steamer Alpena arrived in port early Thursday morning to take on cement. It departed by 7am and is bound for Milwaukee.

The Jacklyn M barge Integrity was also expected in on Thursday.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Hamilton Update

Thursday evening the salties Spar Jade and the Federal Hunter were at anchor in Hamilton Harbor. They were at anchor for most of the day. Another saltie, the Dobrush was at Pier 23 likely unloading steel products.

Thursday morning exhaust was seen coming from the Montrealais, but there was no activity seen that evening and the pilot house windows are still papered over.

From the Burlington Piers a Rigel Shipping tanker was seen moored at the Bronte Piers. A CCG vessel E.P. Le Quebecois is in drydock at Heddles Marine.

Reported by: Patricia Burgon

Cliffs reports strong first quarter, bright outlook

Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. posted a profit in the first quarter of 2003 and says it expects its taconite mines to operate at capacity for the rest of the year.

Record sales of taconite pellets helped Cliffs earn a net income of $2.2 million in the first quarter. That was a significant improvement over the $8.9 million loss reported in the first quarter last year.

Cliffs sold a record 3.4 million tons of taconite pellets in the first quarter. Sales to the new International Steel Group Inc., which bought the assets of LTV Steel and on Tuesday acquired bankrupt Bethlehem Steel Corp., accounted for about two-thirds of sales.

Company officials said they expect pellet sales to remain strong this year.

"We continue to expect that our mines will operate at capacity levels and avoid the idle costs that severely penalized our financial results in 2001 and 2002," said John S. Brinzo, chairman and chief executive officer. "While we have significant cost challenges due to higher energy costs, we are confident that we will continue to be profitable and rebuild our balance sheet in 2003."

In Minnesota, Cliffs owns and manages Northshore Mining Co. in Babbitt and Silver Bay and holds part ownership and is manager at Hibbing Taconite Co. In Upper Michigan, Cliffs manages and holds ownership in the Tilden and Empire mines. The company also manages and owns part of the Wabush mine in Newfoundland.

Pellet production at Hibbing Taconite increased to 2 million tons from 1.3 million tons in 2002; Northshore Mining Co. was up to 1.2 million tons from 800,000 tons; and the Empire, which was idled in the first quarter last year, produced 1.5 million tons. Tilden's production of 1.6 million tons was the same as last year while Wabush increased to 1 million tons from 900,000 tons during the first quarter last year.

ISG's acquisition of Bethlehem Steel Corp, the majority owner of Hibbing Taconite, could further strengthen pellet production there. Although Hibbing Taconite is rated to produce 8 million tons of taconite pellets per year, workers and managers at the plant hope to produce 8.3 million tons this year. Hibbing Taconite ships its pellets through the BNSF ore dock in Superior, Wis.

Northshore Mining Co. is forecast to produce 4.8 million tons, the highest level since Cliffs' took ownership in 1994. The taconite plant and its shipping dock are located in Silver Bay, Minn.

Reported by: Al Miller

Quebec students stranded on icebound ship

Forty-four Quebec high school students on a field trip remained stranded aboard their tour ship, which is stuck in a field of ice in the St. Lawrence River, the Canadian Press reported.

The 10th-grade students from Quebec City's Petit Seminaire were scheduled to return home Sunday after a field trip along the river aboard the Nordic Express. But their ship got stuck Saturday in ice floes near Blanc-Sablon in northeastern Quebec. The vessel remained there Wednesday while a Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker struggled to free it.

The ship captain said the students were doing fine.

"The morale on board is still very good," Capt. Stephane Anctil said. "We can last as long as we have food and water."

Anctil said the Nordic Express still had two or three days' worth of supplies. A Coast Guard official said more food would be brought to the boat if the rescue effort drags on.

An uncommonly thick ice jam formed over the last several weeks, with winds from the St. Lawrence Gulf blowing the glacial masses into one concentrated area.

"The ice conditions are extraordinary and the Nordic Express is having tremendous difficulty navigating through them," a Coast Guard official said.

The Canadian Coast Guard sent one of its heaviest icebreakers - the Halifax-based CCGS Terry Fox - to clear a path for the smaller vessel late last week. But the rescue effort has stalled since Saturday, with floes constantly clotting behind the escort vehicle and blocking the path set for the Nordic Express.

Reported by: Gary Stark

Egyptian ship quarantined at Halifax for anthrax check

The Egyptian ship Wadi Alarab will be quarantined at Halifax because a crewman reportedly died of anthrax.

The saltie was supposed to deliver a load of bauxite to the Alcan aluminum plant in Saguenay, Quebec, but it was diverted to Brazil earlier in the week to drop off the body of the first mate for medical examination.

An initial autopsy indicated the man may have died of anthrax, a bacterial disease carried by certain animals that affects the skin and lungs. Brazilian authorities will perform a second autopsy to confirm the results.

Officials from Health Canada, the RCMP and Transport Canada were warned about the ship Wednesday. They will place the vessel under quarantine about eight kilometers off shore. The ship will then undergo a full decontamination process.

Reported by: Bill Bird

St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

Hickory WLB-212 exiting Seaway, April 24.
Broadside view.
Spruceglen (ex-Fraser) upbound for Seaway off Varennes, April 21.
Ispat Kirti, about do dock at Contrecoeur, April 21.
Spruceglen, first trip on St. Lawrence, upbound off Contrecoeur April 21.
Spruceglen passing Ispat Kirti off Contrecoeur dock, April 21.
Sidsel Knutsen downbound from Montréal off Contrecoeur, April 21.
Algomarine, a rare caller in our parts, upbound for Seaway, April 21.
Marion Green, downbound from Montréal, April 18.

Reported by: Marc Piché

Hickory and Vancouver

The Hickory was exiting the Seaway at Montreal, around 10 a.m. Thursday.

USCGC Hickory exiting the Seaway at Montreal.
name board on the starboard side, with the bell behind the wheelhouse, call letter flags on the mast.
stern quarter view of the USCGC Hickory with the Olympic Stadium in the foreground.
MOL Initiative at her dock in Vancouver.
Potash waiting for a ship.
An unnamed vessel waiting for the MOL Initiative to finish docking.

Reported by: Kent Malo

Today in Great Lakes History - April 25

The b) PAUL R. TREGURTHA was christened April 25, 1981 as the a) WILLIAM J. DE LANCEY.

On April 25, 1973 the self-unloading boom on the TADOUSSAC (2) collapsed while she was at Sandusky, OH.

In 1925 the Ann Arbor 4 was back in service after running aground on February 13th off Kewaunee, WI.

In 1973 it was announced that the City of Saginaw 31 would be scrapped after a fire which destroyed her cabin deck in 1971.

ENERCHEM LAKER was launched April 25, 1958 as a) ROCKCLIFFE HALL (2).

BENJAMIN F. FAIRLESS was launched April 25, 1942.

WILLIAM LIVINGSTONE was launched April 25, 1908.

The PERCIVAL ROBERTS, JR. sailed light on her maiden voyage April 25, 1913 from Lorain to load ore at Two Harbors, MN.

On April 25, 1954, the T.R. McLagan (now Oakglen) entered service. At 714'6", she took the title for longest vessel on the Great Lakes from the Joseph H. Thompson, beating the Thompson by three inches. The Thompson had held the honor since November 4, 1952.

METEOR (2) was launched in 1896 as a) FRANK ROCKEFELLER.

On April 25, 1949, GRAINMOTOR collided with the abutment of the railroad bridge above Lock 2 of the Lachine Canal.

The wooden schooner OTTAWA was launched on 25 April 1874 at Grand Haven, MI. She was owned by Capt. William R. Loutill and could carry 180,000 feet of lumber.

T. S. CHRISTIE (wooden propeller, 160', 533 gt) was launched at F. W. Wheeler's yard (hull #22) in W. Bay City, MI on 25 April 1885. She was built for the Bay City & Cleveland Transportation Company at a cost of $45,000. Originally built as a double deck vessel, she was cut down to a single decker at Chicago in 1902.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Frantz Moved to Dry Dock

Joseph H. Frantz was towed stern first from her lay up slip at the former Hocking Valley Coal Dock to the Toledo Shipyard Wednesday. The "G" tugs Illinois and Idaho provided the propulsion for the half mile trip down stream..

In a little more than an hour the Joe was safely inside the dry dock. The Frantz was pulled into the dry dock by the ship yard winches as there was no air or steam power on the boat to run the deck winches. She is expected to be on the blocks for only one day for a bottom inspection.

Painter scrapping the pilothouse windows.
New white forward cabins.
Backing out of Hocking Valley slip.
Backing down the Maumee River.
In mid trip.
Stern next to Buffalo laid up near the ship yard.
Safely in the dry dock.

Reported by: Dave Wobser

Atlantic Superior Heads for Duluth

The Atlantic Superior entered the Seaway on her first trip into the lakes since she left the lakes to sail as the M.H. Baker III. The vessel was upbound in the St. Lawrence Seaway at Cap St. Michel at 5:40 p.m. Wednesday. The Superior has been reflagged Canadian and is now going to trade on the Great Lakes. She is the last of CSL's vessels that have traded on the ocean over the past decade to return to the Lakes. Over the past seven years both the Atlantic Erie and Atlantic Huron have come back from ocean trading.

The Atlantic Superior is due in Duluth early next week to load a cargo of taconite at DMIR. That cargo is destined for Nanticoke's Stelco plant.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Jackson Departs

The Herbert C. Jackson departed Buffalo late Wednesday afternoon with the tug New Jersey at her stern. The Jackson arrived Tuesday and unloaded over night at the ADM Standard Elevator.

Departing with the tug New Jersey.
Close up.

Reported by: Brian Wroblewski

Marquette Update

The Mississagi and Kaye Barker completed their loads at Marquette's LS & I ore dock on Wednesday, and were replaced by the Saginaw and the H. Lee White. The Charles Beeghly is expected in on Thursday, the Lee A. Tregurtha was cancelled for Thursday. Friday should see the Great Lakes Trader in the morning, and the Middletown in the late evening.

The Lee A. Tregurtha pulled into the Marquette ore dock on Wednesday, then received changed orders and left without taking any ore to go to the head of the lake.

The H. Lee White had difficulty unloading her cargo of stone and her arrival at the ore dock will be delayed because of the sticky load.

Saginaw loading.
Bow view.
Loading chutes.
H. Lee White loading.
Close up.
Stone trickles off.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Green Bay Tug and Barge

Wednesday was a day of tugs and barges in Green Bay. The Pere Marquette 41 and tug Invincible finished unloading pig iron and departed Green Bay about 3 a.m. The tug Jacklyn M. and barge Integrity arrived in Green Bay at 7 a.m. with cement for Lafarge. The Rebecca Lynn and barge A410 arrived in Green Bay at 9 a.m. to unload liquid asphalt at Koch Materials. The Barbara Andrie and barge A390 is due on Saturday.

Reported by: Jason Leino

Milwaukee Update

The tug Petite Forte and barge St. Marys Cement I arrived in Milwaukee Wednesday on their first trip of the year. Instead of proceeding up the Milwaukee and Menomonee Rivers to their dock at Blue Circle Cement they headed to the Badger Cement dock at the south end of the inner mooring basin. There they spent most of the day standing by as various pieces of deck cargo were unloaded by a shore side crane. The pieces were part of a hopper and conveyor system that is being constructed at Badger Cement to speed the unloading of cement clinkers.

Just before sunset the Cedarglen departed the Nidera grain elevator with over 25,200 metric tons of corn.

Petite Forte/St. Marys Cement standing by.
A section of deck cargo is unloaded.
Cedarglen pulling away from the elevator.
Heading for the lake.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Goderich Report

The Vancouverborg arrived at the grain terminals Wednesday afternoon to load. The Capt. Henry Jackman loaded salt at the mine on Saturday and returned on Tuesday, loading salt in snow flurries. The Peter R. Cresswell also arrived the same day and waited behind the mine for her turn to load. Both boats are taking their loads of salt to Milwaukee.

Reported by: Lisa Stuparyk

Saginaw Update

The J.A.W. Iglehart was outbound from the Lafarge Terminal in Carrollton after unloading overnight. She was passing through Bay City around 9:30 Wednesday morning.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
J.A.W. Iglehart downbound through Liberty Bridge.
Passing Wheeler's Landing Lighthouse.
Stern view.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Detroit Update

Below are images of traffic in Detroit on Wednesday.

Algonova downbound off Zug Island.
Stern view.
St Marys Cement II & Sea Eagle II unloading at the Blue Circle Cement Dock in the Rouge River.
Close up.
Stern view.
Hamilton Tuff.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls

Ashtabula Update

Ashtabula had two rare visitors Wednesday. The Algomarine arrived at 1 p.m. with a cargo of iron ore for the Pinney Dock. The Algomarine loaded in Pointe Noire, Quebec.

At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday the Spruceglen reported that they were upbound at Long Point and they would be at Ashtabula Piers at 10:30 p.m. The vessel reported a cargo of titanium slag.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Port Dover Tugs

Below are images of tugs at Port Dover, Ont.

Tug Jiggs.
Stern view.
Bert Verge. Now a private tug, she used to sit half sunk in the basin at the HMCS Star in Hamilton Ontario until being rescued a few years ago and brought to Port Dover
Gambles yard.
Tug J. A. Cornett.
Close up.
Another view.
New cabin on the F. M. Sting.

Reported by: Jeff Shrubb

Captain Riley Ward

Services for Captain Riley Ward, Master of the Alpena, will be held Friday April 25 at 1 p.m. services will be held at the Miles Funeral Home in Winfield, Alabama (800-315-8346) it is suggested that cards and memorials be sent to the funeral home.

Reported by: Jerry Lawson

Light Keeper Louis Bauchan

A great American hero has been lost with the passing of Louis Bauchan, the last known surviving lighthouse keeper of the old United States Lighthouse Service. Bauchan, 91, passed away at his Cheboygan, Michigan home Sunday night. Bauchan served as a lighthouse keeper at various Great Lakes lighthouses including St. Martins Island, Poverty Island, Chicago Harbor and Pointe Betsie. He also served on the Coast Guard Icebreaker Mackinaw.

Wearing his lighthouse keeper's uniform he was a fixture at each year's Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival and other lighthouse events where he was always more than willing to share his memories and many photographs. Being a lighthouse keeper was more than a job to him. During his days as a lighthouse keeper he kept a detailed photographic account of his days in the U.S. Lighthouse Service and later the U.S. Coast Guard.

With the help of his family those photographs and his memories have been recorded for future generations. I'll never forget the first time I met him; he was one of those people that you liked instantly. Not only was he part of the "Greatest Generation", he was a hero of it.

Louis Bauchan's funeral will be Thursday, April 24 at the Dorrell Funeral Home, 605 N. Washington Ave., Ludington, MI 49431. In lieu of flowers the family request that donations in memory of Louis Bauchan be sent to Friends of Point Betsie Light, P.O. Box 601, Frankfort, MI 49635. Sympathy cards can be sent to - The Bauchan Family, P.O. Box 730, Houghton Lake, MI 48629-0730.

Article from the 2002 Winter issue of Great Laker Magazine.

Today in Great Lakes History - April 24

The ONTADOC (2) (b) MELISSA DESGAGNES) sailed from Collingwood on her maiden voyage April 24, 1975 for Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. to load steel for Duluth, MN.

The D.M. CLEMSON (2) departed Lorain on her maiden voyage April 24, 1917 to load iron ore at Duluth, MN.

The B.F. JONES (2) left Quebec April 24, 1973 in tandem with her former fleet mate EDWARD S. KENDRICK towed by the Polish tug KORAL heading for scrapping in Spain.

The wooden schooner WELLAND CANAL was launched at Russell Armington's shipyard at St. Catharine's, Ontario. She was the first ship built at St. Catharine's and the first to navigate the Welland Canal when it opened between St. Catharine's and Lake Ontario on 10 May 1828.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Court approves U.S. Steel bid for National

U.S. Steel Corp. on Monday received bankruptcy court approval of its $1 billion offer to acquire National Steel Corp.

The deal gives U.S. Steel ownership of six National Steel Corp. steelmaking, finishing and iron ore facilities, several National subsidiaries and the National Steel Pellet Co., a 5.4-million-ton per year taconite plant in Keewatin, Minn.

U.S. Steel officials say it's too early to detail how the acquisition will affect production and employment at the taconite plant. The plant is one of two that ship pellets through the BNSF ore dock in Superior, Wis.

Mike Dixon, a U.S. Steel spokesman, Monday told the Duluth News Tribune that the company will continue to operate the taconite plant and National's Granite City Division, an Illinois steel mill located just northeast of St. Louis. Because much of National Steel Pellet Co.'s taconite pellet production feeds blast furnaces at Granite City, continued operation of the steel mill is good news for the taconite plant.

For the deal to become final, thousands of steelworkers at National and U.S. Steel facilities still must approve a tentative labor agreement reached two weeks ago between USWA and the companies. The acquisition could take until late in the second quarter to complete.

"We are extremely pleased that we have emerged as the successful bidder for National's world-class assets," said Thomas J. Usher, U.S. Steel chairman and chief executive officer. "The acquisition of these assets will be a significant step forward in our strategy to grow profitably and to strengthen our position as a leading global provider of high value-added steel products."

If Steelworkers approve the contract and Granite City continues to operate, the deal would bode well for National Steel Pellet Co., said Peter Kakela, a Michigan State industry analyst.

Reported by: Al Miller

Maumee Enters Dry Dock

The Maumee entered Bay Ship Building's graving dock on Tuesday for her 5 Year Survey. The Maumee will remain in dry dock while the U.S. Coast Guard and ABS conduct the surveys.

Maumee in dry dock.

Reported by: Vic DeLarwelle

Frantz Dry Docking

The Joseph H. Frantz is expected to enter the Toledo Shiprepair dry dock Wednesday morning.

Tugs from the Great Lakes Towing Co. are expected to arrive at the Hocking Valley Docks by 8 a.m. to handle the tow to the shipyard. Tuesday afternoon both of her anchors were up and most of her shore lines were onboard the boat.

Her stay in the dry dock is expected to last for one to two days. After dry docking the Frantz will shift to a local dock site and crews will complete fit out.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Hickory on the Welland Canal

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory was passing downbound on the Welland Canal Tuesday. The 225-foot buoy tender is heading off the lakes on her delivery trip to Alaska

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt

Soo Winds

High winds sent vessels to anchor over night in the St. Marys River and on Whitefish Bay. Early Tuesday morning the Cleveland based icebreaker Neah Bay departed the Soo Harbor, locking upbound into Whitefish Bay. During the night the Kaye E Barker, Algoville and Island Gem went to anchor near Gros Cap, Lake Guardian tied up in the harbor, Middletown and John J Boland tied up at the locks. The tug Frederick returned to complete the removal of the ice boom at Mission Point Tuesday, opening river traffic to two way traffic. Winter conditions restrict passing in the area.

Reported by: Scott Best

ISG gets court approval to buy bankrupt Bethlehem

International Steel Group won bankruptcy court approval Tuesday to buy the assets of ailing Bethlehem Steel Corp., marking the second major steel industry consolidation this week.

The deal calls for ISG, controlled by turnaround specialist Wilbur Ross Jr., to pay $952 million in cash and assume $700 million of Bethlehem's secured debt. Bethlehem has been operating under bankruptcy protection since 2001.

Bethlehem Steel, which has a more than 100-year history and was once the icon of the American industrial landscape. Its assets include Hibbing Taconite, one of the largest taconite producers in Minnesota, and the Great Lakes freighters Burns Harbor and Stewart J. Cort.

The deal with International Steel, which has recently acquired LTV Corp., comes at a time when stiff competition from foreign steel producers, who enjoy lower labor costs, is driving a rapid consolidation in the industry.

On Monday, a Chicago bankruptcy court approved National Steel Corp.'s asset sale to United States Steel Corp. for $850 million. U.S. Steel beat out a higher offer by AK Steel Holding Corp. because it was able to secure a union contract while its rival couldn't.

The acquisition of National Steel's assets will allow U.S. Steel, based in Pittsburgh, to produce as much as 22 million tons of steel a year, becoming the largest steel maker in the U.S. The combined International Steel-Bethlehem company could produce about 16 million tons annually.

Reported by: Frank Frisk

Marquette Update

The Mississagi arrived in Marquette on Tuesday morning, but did not started unloading her coke breeze for more than 8 hours. It was expected to take about four hours to unload and then she will move to the north side of the dock to take on a load of ore.

The Kaye Barker is expected in Tuesday night and will load on the south side of the dock. The H. Lee White came in on Tuesday with a load of stone, but got stuck in the pack ice on her way to the lower harbor. It took her more than two hours to break through. Once the White finishes unloading, she will move to the upper harbor for a load of ore. The Lee A Tregurtha is expected in on Wednesday about 9 a.m. to also take on a load of ore.

Mississagi docked.
Bow view.
Stern and boom.
H. Lee White powering through the ice.
Almost through the ice.
Turned and backing into port.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Vancouverborg Needs Help Departing Menominee

The Vancouverborg attempted to turn herself around at the K&K Dock on Tuesday at noon and found she couldn't quite make it due to a strong current in the Menominee River.

A call was placed to Selvick Marine Towing at Sturgeon Bay, Wi, and the Jimmy L responded, arriving off the Menominee North Pier Lighthouse about 4:40 PM.

Last year the Vancouverborg ran into the same problem with even stronger current. That time, the Jimmy L didn't attempt to turn her around, she simply took the Vancouverborg and towed her out of the harbor stern first.

Tuesday the tug took a stern line off the Vancouverborg, which then headed upriver to the turning basin. When the nose of the Vancouverborg was into the turning basin, the Jimmy L maneuvered around the stern and headed upriver.

With the Jimmy L pulling her stern upriver and the Vancouverborg using her bow thruster, they made short work of the turn.

The Jimmy L disconnected after the turn was completed, but stayed behind the Vancouverborg as she came through the Ogden Street Bridge. At the last turn in the river, the Jimmy L was asked to nudge the Vancouverborg at her stern to aid making the turn as the current was still swift.

One last obstacle faced the Vancouverborg before she reached the open bay, many fishing boats clogged the river. Some were slow to move out of the way and the Vancouverborg had to sound the danger warning twice before leaving the river.

The U.S. Coast Guard Fir was out in the bay all day on a training cruise. She came back to Marinette Marine about 7 p.m.

Jimmy L heads past lighthouse.
Jimmy L heading through a bunch of fishing boats.
Side shot of Jimmy L.
Vancouverborg at her dock at K&K on Tuesday afternoon.
Jimmy L hooks on to the stern of the Vancouverborg.
Vancouverborg heading into the turning basin.
Jimmy L pours on the power.
Jimmy L heads upriver with the Vancouverborg's stern.
Meanwhile, the Vancouverborg uses her bow thruster.
Jimmy L disappears around the stern of the Vancouverborg.
Halfway around.
The turn continues.
Almost around.
Straightening out.
Turn complete.
Turning up the power heading for the Ogden Street Bridge.
Through the bridge heading for the bay.
Jimmy L comes to assist in the final turn.
Close-up of Jimmy L on Vancouverborg's stern.
Heading through the fishing boats heading for the bay.
USCG Fir in front of Green Island.
On the bay of Green Bay.

Reported by: Dick Lund

Green Bay Update

Traffic remains busy in Green Bay with a steady flow of commercial vessel in port since the season opened on April 12.

The John J. Boland arrived in Green Bay on Friday night and unloaded stone at Western Lime and departed Saturday. The Mark Hannah and barge unloaded at US Oil on Sunday. The Kaye E. Barker arrived in Green Bay Sunday with coal from South Chicago for the Fox River Dock.

Tuesday the Pere Marquette 41 was unloading pig iron at the Fox River dock and is expected to depart Wednesday morning. The Jacklyn M./Integrity and Karen Andrie are expected in port Wednesday, The American Republic is expected in Thursday, and the Barbra Andrie is expected in on Saturday.

Pere Marquette 41 in Green Bay. Tim Nixon

Reported by: Jason Leino

Earl Returns to Holland

The Earl W. Oglebay repeated her Easter weekend itinerary on Tuesday, splitting a load of Port Inland stone between Verplank's docks at Muskegon and Holland.

A 17 foot shoal at the mouth of Holland harbor is forcing the lightering stop at Holland. She arrived at Holland Tuesday loaded to 16 feet. Dredging is scheduled for later this week or early next week.

Reported by: Bob Vande Vusse

Saginaw Update

The J.A.W. Iglehart became the second visitor to Saginaw this season, arriving Tuesday morning alongside the E.M. Ford at the Lafarge cement terminal.

While upbound to Saginaw, the Iglehart met the outbound Joseph H. Thompson, which had unloaded overnight at the Sargent stone dock at Zilwaukee.

After turning at Sixth Street, the Thompson waited for the upbound vessel to pass, then continued its outbound transit late in the morning.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
J.A.W. upbound at Lafayette Bridge.
Stern view.
Close up of pilothouse.
Joseph H. Thompson coming through Liberty Bridge.
Downbound at Wheeler's Landing.
Stern view at the Bay City Wirt Dock.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Cleveland News

The Fred R. White continues to run the shuttle from the CBT dock to ISG. She was unloading ore at the ISG upper dock Tuesday night at 6 p.m. The Kellstone barge and Palladino tug were docked near Scranton Road Tuesday evening.

The Calumet was being assisted into the Cargill salt dock by the G tug California after unloading a stone cargo upriver and reversing direction at the rivers mouth. The Indiana Harbor was unloading a cargo of taconite at the CBT dock for transit to ISG.

At the lakefront saltie docks the Carola. Isolda and Federal St. Laurent were berthed at docks 24 and 22. The Federal St. Laurent was loading 21,000 tons of steel from ISG for transfer to Europe. This is the first export of steel from Cleveland since and 1994 and is the first of at least five shiploads of steel to be sent overseas from the recently resurrected LTV steel mill.

Recent pictures by: Mike Reindel
Fred White loading.
American Republic unloading.
Helena Oldendorff.
Indiana Harbor unloads.
Barge Milwaukee and tug Ohio.
Ohio close up.
Maumee and American Republic depart.

Reported by: Rex Cassidy, Mike Reindel and Bill Kloss

Toronto Report

The tug Wendy B. returned to port Tuesday afternoon. McNally Construction Co.'s barge McNally Olympic was towed into Blockhouse Bay Tuesday afternoon by the tug Whitby. The Olympic had two cement trucks aboard.

The cruise ship Northern Spirit 1 was out for a rather wet charter Tuesday afternoon. The saltie Makeevka was still unloading at Redpath Sugar and the saltie Federal Polaris remained at anchor in the harbor.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Clarkson Update

Monday night Jacov Sverdlov arrived at Petro Canada from the Seaway. She was been discharging cargo all day Tuesday. Tuesday afternoon the James Norris came up the lake from Colborne with her third limestone cargo of the new season for St. Lawrence Cement.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Seaway News

Entering the Seaway on April 17 was the Canadian Coast Guard ship Tracy which had the duty of installing buoys over the next two days between the entrance of the Seaway and Lake St. Louis. According to an article in the recent edition of "Maritime Magazine", she will be taken out of service before the end of the year. Tracy was built in 1968 by Port Weller Dry Dock.

Expected at Hamilton on April 25 is the Atlantic Superior. She was recently renamed with her former name being M.H. Baker III. As the Barker she was trading on international routes for Canada Steamship Lines under the Bahamas flag.

The first new foreign-flag saltie of the year entered the Seaway last week. Carola was bound for Cleveland to deliver a cargo of steel. Two others are expected before the end of the month, the brand new Navitas Prelude scheduled to go to Hamilton and the Orna going to Côte Ste. Catherine and possibly other ports. Orna is a vessel which visited Great Lakes ports under all of her former names. She transited the Seaway first as St. Cathariness in 1986, then Asian Erie in 1990, Handy Laker in 1992 and Moor Laker in 1998.

Correction: The Makeevka's accommodation block was repainted last year and her new funnel markings were added at that time, not during the winter months as first reported in April 15 news item.

Reported by: René Beauchamp

Vancouver Traffic

Below are images from a recent trip to Vancouver B.C.

The inner harbor ferries aptly named Seabus.
MOL INTIATIVE assisted to her dock.
STELLAR STREAM waiting to load.
KU' ULAKAI, former LLOYD B GORE built in 1944 at Quincy Mass. now owned by Canadian Black Cod Fisheries Corp, Richmond B.C. Photographed at Steveston B.C.

Reported by: Kent Malo

Today in Great Lakes History - April 23

In 1953 the 1953 Pere Marquette 22 was cut in half, then pulled apart and lengthened by 40 feet, as part of a major refit at Manitowoc, WI. Also during this refit, her triple expansion engines were replaced with Skinner Unaflow, and her double stacks were replaced with a single, tapered stack. The refit was completed August 28, 1953.

On April 23, 1966 the JOSEPH S. WOOD was towed to the Ford Rouge complex at Dearborn, MI by her new owners, the Ford Motor Company.

The FORT YORK was commissioned April 23, 1958.

On April 23, 1980 the ARTHUR B. HOMER's bow thruster failed while maneuvering through ice at Taconite Harbor, MN, resulting in a grounding which damaged her bow and one ballast tank.

The JOSEPH S. SCOBELL was launched April 23, 1891 as a) GRIFFIN (1).

On April 23, 1972, PAUL H. CARNAHAN arrived at the Burlington Northern Docks at Superior, Wisconsin to load 22,402 gross tons of iron ore bound for Detroit, opening the 1972 shipping season at Superior.

On 23 April 1859 at about midnight, the schooner S. BUTTLES was fighting a severe gale. She was carrying staves from Port Burwell to Clayton and sprung a leak while battling the gale. While manning the pumps, one man was washed overboard, but his shipmates quickly rescued him. Capt. Alexander Pollock beached the vessel to save her about 10 miles east of the Genesee River.

On 23 April 1882, GALLATIN (2-mast wooden schooner, 138', 422 t, built in 1863 at Oswego, NY) was carrying pig iron from St. Ignace, MI to Erie, PA when she sprang a leak in a storm on Lake Erie. She struck bottom on Chickanolee Reef and foundered in shallow water at Point Pelee. Her crew was saved from the rigging by the fishing sloop LIZZIE.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

River Reopens

The St. Clair River was reopened Monday evening, after downed power lines closed the river to traffic for almost 24 hours.

The first traffic was cleared to transit the river about 6:15 p.m. with the upbound Adam E. Cornelius, Gemini, Presque Isle and Algonova all leading the way. The upbound traffic cleared Buoys 1 and 2 in lower Lake Huron at 7:45 p.m. and then the downbound parade began including the John B. Aird, Paul R. Tregurtha, Karen Andrie & A397, Herbert C. Jackson and the Calumet.

The repair work on the downed power cables started out slow Monday morning as work crews waited for an assessment team in a helicopter to come look over the situation from the air. By noon only one cable had been reeled in and the outlook was that ship traffic may not resume until sometime on Tuesday. Crews worked quickly that afternoon and the remaining cables where reeled in.

A local radio station was reporting at noon time that the St. Clair Parkway River Road on the Canadian side will not be reopened until the new tower and lines are installed, a project that is expected to get underway immediately. Ontario Power will most likely use helicopters to restring the lines.

Reported by: Jamie Kerwin, Frank Frisk and Larry Leverenz & Larry Leverenz III

Frantz Heading for Dry Dock

Workers started painting on the Joseph H. Frantz in Toledo on Monday. The pilothouse is being painted white to cover the tan Oglebay Norton colors. Crews are working throughout the boat and are removing the shutters from the pilothouse windows. A large crane is standing by near the bow area and will be used to handle the anchor chain and various lines from the boat.

The stack colors have not yet been changed, but the Oglebay Norton markings will be removed as the vessel will be chartered to Great Lakes Associates (Kinsman).

The Frantz is scheduled to be moved to the Toledo Shipyard this week for a one-day hull inspection. Tugs from the Great Lakes Towing Company will handle the tow from the Hocking Valley Dock to the drydock.

Following the inspection, she will be moved back to the Hocking Valley Dock for fitout. It is rumored that the charter from Oglebay Norton to Kinsman has been extended to five years. The charter is dependent on a satisfactory hull inspection.

Pictures by Dave Wobser
Painting on the pilothouse.
Close up.
Another view.
Stack markings.

Reported by: Dave Wobser and Jim Hoffman

Twin Ports Report

As quietly as a tardy Easter Bunny, an offshore westerly wind crept into the Twin Ports on Sunday night and completely cleared the long-standing ice jam from the waters off the Duluth ship canal.

By 7 a.m. Monday, the canal and its approaches were wide open, although the word apparently had not yet spread. The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. entered port through Superior entry on its way to Midwest Energy Terminal to load coal. Northeast winds over the weekend kept the ice jam loosely packed off Duluth and Superior entries, although by Sunday morning the ice was beginning to move away from the Duluth side. By midday Monday, the winds were returning to the north, and some ice was streaming into the harbor through the ship canal, although not in enough volume to cause any problems. Northeast winds are predicted for today, so the ice may continue to migrate. However, warm temperatures and sunshine predicted for the rest of the week may help melt the ice.

Vessel traffic was light Monday. In addition to the McCarthy, John G. Munson was in port to unload stone at DMIR and then load taconite pellets for Lorain. Chios Pride continued loading grain at Cenex Harvest States. Coast Guard cutters Mackinaw and Morro Bay remained at their dock most of the weekend. They were available to assist vessels moving through the ice field but were not working the ice because of the northeast winds. Both vessels were still in port Monday morning.

The Duluth ship canal remained open throughout the day Monday, and the McCarthy and Munson both departed through the canal.

Reported by Al Miller

Marquette Update

The Mesabi Miner unloaded coal on a snowy and windy Monday. The wind brought ice back into the harbor, but the Saginaw was coming in through the ice field Monday evening to take on a load of ore. Tuesday the Mississagi will bring in a load of coke breeze, then move to the north side of the dock for a load of ore so the Kaye Barker can load on the south side. The H. Lee White will load on Wednesday after bringing a load of stone to the lower harbor dock.

Miner unloading.
Close up.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Soo Report

Fog banks rolled into the Soo Harbor Monday morning reducing visibility and slowing river traffic. The Helena Oldendorff, Lake Superior and Lake Guardian were upbound. Downbound was the Joyce L. Van Enkevort.

The Lake Guardian made an overnight stop and tie at the Carbide Dock. The tug Owen Frederick, with help from tug Whitefish Bay and barge, started removing sections of the ice boom at Mission Point Monday. The warmer temperatures this week have helped reduce ice flows in the river.

Lake Guardian upbound.

Reported by: Bonnie Barnes

Saginaw Update

The Joseph H. Thompson became the first vessel this season to make the transit up the Saginaw River from Bay City to Saginaw. The Thompson passed through Bay City late Monday afternoon on its way to the Sargent dock at Zilwaukee after lightering at the Sargent dock in Essexville.

While several vessels have called this month at docks in Essexville, near the mouth of the river, none have proceeded further up the river. By this date last year, more than a dozen vessels had called at docks at the upper end of the river in Saginaw.

The tug James A. Hannah departed the Triple Clean dock in Essexville about 2 p.m. Monday and was outbound with a light fuel barge.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
Joesph H. Thompson unloading at the Sargent Dock in Essexville.
Close up.
Tug close up.
Unloading boom.
James A. Hannah downbound at Smith Park.
Passing the Joe Thompson.
James Hannah close up.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Todd Shorkey and Lon Morgan

Lower Detroit River

The Capt. Ralph Tucker docked in Amherstburg at General Chemical Saturday night. She departed upbound on Sunday . Other traffic included the Birchglen, Walter J. McCarthy and the saltie Kapitonas A Lucka.

Capt. Ralph Tucker.
Kapitonas A Lucka.
Walter J. McCarthy Jr.
Edgar B. Speer.

Reported by: Dave Cozens

Toledo News

The Cuyahoga was at Andersons "E" Elevator on Monday loading grain. The Buffalo was at the old Interlake Iron Dock near the shipyard and is fitting out and will be sailing soon. The Lady Hamilton was at the T.W.I. Dock unloading cargo.

Presently there are no vessels at the CSX and Torco Dock complexes. The next scheduled coal boats due in at the CSX Docks will be the American Mariner on Saturday followed by the Charles M. Beeghly on Sunday. However these vessels may be delayed due to the St. Clair River at Port Huron/Sarnia being closed due to the downed power lines across the river.

The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Dock will be the Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin late Monday evening. The Algowood on Tuesday. The Nanticoke and CSL Niagara on Saturday, followed by the Jean Parisien on Monday 28th.

The following boats remain in layup at Toledo. The Courtney Burton, Saturn, and the ex Boblo passenger vessel Ste. Claire at the Lakefront Docks. The Wolverine at the CSX Docks. The ex NS railway car floats Roanoke and Windsor at the CSX Docks "Frog Pond" area. The Buckeye at the City Docks.

The Philip R. Clarke has brought in two boatloads of salt to the A.R.M.S. Dock the past several days. She may be back here on Tuesday at this dock complex to unload another salt cargo.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Fairport update

Saturday the Philip R. Clarke was seen in Fairport Harbor (Grand River) taking on a load of salt at the Morton mine. By Sunday morning the Clarke had left and the Sam Laud was discharging cargo further up the river. The Laud was doing a nice job of discharging cargo holding its location by turning its props to counter the river current.

Reported by: Chris Wilson

Welland Canal Traffic

Below are images taken Monday.

Yellowknife approaching Lock 2 upbound.
Sliding along wall towards Lock 2.
Federal Yoshino entering Lock 3.
Approaching the wall above Lock 2 downbound.

Reported by: Bill Bird

Toronto Update

On an otherwise dull and sometimes foggy day, Tony Bradley's tug Iroquios [ex-J. G. Fleck] was out on the harbor Monday afternoon. The charter vessel Enterprise 2000 was out that morning on its first charter of the season, elsewise, the usual harbor traffic prevailed.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Today in Great Lakes History - April 22

ST.CLAIR (2) was christened April 22, 1976 at Bayship.

The CHICAGO TRIBUNE laid up for the last time at Toronto on April 22, 1986.

HOCHELAGA (2) lost her self-unloading boom during a windstorm at Windsor, Ont. on April 22, 1980. As a consequence she made ten trips hauling grain as a "straight decker".

CHARLES M. WHITE was commissioned April 22, 1952 at South Chicago. She was soon recognized as one of the fastest ships on the Great Lakes because of her ability to reach speeds in excess of 17 knots (19.6 mph).

On 22 April 1871, the 210', 4 mast wooden schooner JAMES COUCH was launched at Port Huron, MI. She was named for a prominent Chicago businessman of the times.

On 22 April 1872, EVA M. CONE (wooden schooner, 25 t, built in 1859 at Oconto, WI)was carrying lumber from Port Washington to Milwaukee on an early-season run when she struck on ice floe, capsized and sank just outside of Milwaukee harbor. Her crew made it to safety in her lifeboat.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Tower Collapses, Closes St. Clair River

A tower carrying high voltage electrical cables over the St. Clair River collapsed shortly before 7 p.m. Sunday closing to the river to traffic.

Severe thunder storms with high winds are being blamed for the collapse. The tower is located on the Canadian side of the river and runs between Marysville, Mi and Sarnia, Ont. The lines have been in place for many years next to the Marysville DTE Energy power plant one mile south of Port Huron as a means of transferring power back and forth in the event of an outage. Recently DTE Energy has been selling excess power to a number of customers at many distant locations using the lines.

The power lines are normally carried 177-feet above the river, Sunday night three lines were reported to be hanging 50-feet above the river and three to six additional lines were reported in the river.

A safety zone has been established in the river between Sun Oil in Sarnia and Shell Oil in Corunna. The U.S. Coast Guard is patrolling the area and ships delayed by the collapse are finding safe dockage in the river or anchoring in lower Lake Huron. Repairs are expected to be completed within the next 24 hours.

Sunday night the following vessels were delayed by the collapse: Adam E. Cornelius, Canadian Transport, tug Reliance and barge were all upbound. Downbound going to anchor in lower Lake Huron included the Paul R. Tregurtha, Herbert C. Jackson and John B. Aird. The list was expected grow over night and could be costly for shippers. Some of the larger vessels can cost $2,000 an hour to operate even while waiting at anchor.

Check back for updates.

Pictures by Scott Tomlinson
Tower on the Canadian side of the river.
Lines haning from the U.S. side.

Reported by: Wayne Gray and Scott Tomlinson

McKee Sons Opens Manistee

The barge McKee Sons and tug Invincible became the first dry bulk freighter of the year in Manistee when it entered the harbor at 5 p.m. Sunday evening. The vessel arrived off the piers at 1 p.m., but anchored due to strong southerly winds.

The McKee Sons was bound for the Tondu energy plant with a load of coal from South Chicago's KCBX dock. Since its opening in the early 1990's, Tondu has received coal from only Oglebay Norton vessels. Besides being the McKee Sons' first trip to the Tondu dock, this is also Tondu's first load of coal from South Chicago. Tondu's previous loads have come from Toledo, Sandusky, or Conneaut, Ohio.

It is unknown at this time if Grand River Navigation has acquired the contract for Tondu, or if this was simply a rare load, necessitated by a lack of coal at the Tondu dock.

The traditional cane and top hat could not be presented to the Captain of the McKee Sons due to heightened security at the Tondu plant. Local resident Ken Jilbert hoped to present the gifts to the captain on Monday morning.

The port of Manistee was opened in 2002 by the Mississagi. The Mississagi arrived with a load of stone from Meldrum Bay, for the Seng dock, on April 1, 2002. The tanker Gemini was the first tank vessel of the 2003 year in Manistee, arriving on January 4.

Reported by: Chris Franckowiak

Vancouverborg in Menominee

The Vancouverborg became the first ship of the year from Wagenborg Shipping into Menominee, MI on Easter Sunday. She is carrying wood pulp from Finland for K&K Warehouse.

The old carferry, Viking I, had to be moved forward to make room for the Vancouverborg. K&K has two separate dock areas at the east and west end of their dock. The river in front of the East Dock is dredged deeper than the West Dock. However, the East Dock is just dirt, so the cargo has to be unloaded onto flatbed trucks and driven to the warehouse to be unloaded. When enough cargo is lightered from the ship, it moves up to the West Dock where the dock is blacktop, and the cargo can be offloaded onto the dock and taken to the warehouse by forklift, which is much faster. It appears they won't start unloading until Monday morning.

Wide view of Vancouverborg with unloading cranes.
Close-up of Vancouverborg.
Viking and Vancouverborg at K&K Dock.
Close-up of Viking I.

Reported by: Dick Lund

Busy Day in Milwaukee

Easter Sunday was a busy day in the Port of Milwaukee. Both the Capt. Henry Jackman and Southdown Challenger departed after discharging their cargos of salt and cement. As they both headed north on Lake Michigan they were passed by the inbound Cedarglen. This is the Cedarglen's first trip to Milwaukee.

They were headed to the Nidera Elevator to load grain for Quebec City.

Tug Virginia stands by waiting for the Challenger to finish unloading.
Challenger 3rd mate, and Sandusky, OH resident, Ken Lichtle shows off his favorite shirt.
Cedarglen at inner piers.
Making the turn inside the mooring basin.
Backing down to the elevator.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Iglehart in St. Joe

The J.A.W. Iglehart returned to St. Joseph, Mi. on Saturday. It arrived in port with a load of cement and departed about 2:00 a.m. Sunday morning. She headed north, upbound on Lake Michigan.

Reported by: Matt Cook

Alpena Update

The Steamer Alpena arrived at the Lafarge dock around 8 a.m. on Easter Sunday. It loaded cement for Milwaukee and departed before noon. The J.A.W Iglehart is expected into port early Monday morning.

The Charles M Beeghly loaded at Stoneport on Sunday, followed by the tug and barge Joseph H. Thompson. The H. Lee White was also at anchor, waiting for its turn to load.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Erie Update

After nearly three weeks without a load of stone, Erie has received two in two days. Saturday evening the Adam E. Cornelius was inbound with a load of stone for the Mounfort Terminal. The Cornelius loaded in Calcite. The vessel was inbound at 9 p.m. on Saturday and outbound at 3:05 a.m. Sunday.

The David Z. Norton arrived in Erie at 12:30 p.m. Sunday, docking at the Mounfort Terminal to unload a cargo of stone from Cedarville. The Norton departed at 7:02 p.m.

The Norton passes the lighthouse .
Close Up .
Close Up of the bow .
Stern View .
Another view.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Hamilton News

On Sunday afternoon, the tug John Spence and barge McAsphalt 401 were moored to the fuel storage vessel Provmar Terminal at Pier 24 with the Hamilton Energy moored on the other side of the barge.

The Hamilton Energy departed Hamilton Sunday night to refuel the Jade Star at the Petro Canada Pier in Oakville (Bronte). The tug John Spence and barge McAsphalt 401 departed Hamilton about 8:30 p.m. heading to the Welland Canal in ballast. The Halifax arrived at 7:30 a.m. Sunday morning going to Stelco with a load of iron ore from Point Noir Quebec. She will be heading back to Point Noir after unloading.

The J.S. St. John is in drydock at Heddles Marine

Reported by: Eric Holmes and Patricia Burgon

Toronto Update

The saltie Federal Polaris arrived during the night and went to anchor in the harbor, off the Redpath Sugar plant, probably waiting for the saltie Makeevka to finish unloading its cargo of raw sugar.

Stephen B. Roman departed Sunday afternoon for Picton.

The brigantines Pathfinder and Playfair departed for Kingston. The tug Kenteau is still on Toronto Drydock. The hull has been painted, but the new engine has not been installed yet.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Spring Fitout at the Dossin Museum

Saturday, April 26 the Dossin Great Lakes Museum will host the Annual ‘Spring Fit Out’ meeting. The event will offer tours of the Sea Scout vessel the Gray Fox, a demonstration of the upcoming Live Web Cam and the chance to tour the museum.

Weekly Updates

The weekly updates have been uploaded.
Click here to view

Today in Great Lakes History - April 21

The EDWIN H. GOTT cleared Two Harbors with her first cargo, 59,375 tons of iron ore, on April 21, 1979 bound for Gary, IN.

The WILLIS L. KING (b) C.L. AUSTIN) departed on her maiden voyage with a load of coal from Toledo on April 21, 1911 bound for Superior, WI.

On April 21, 1988 the BIRCHGLEN was towed off the Great Lakes by the tugs ELMORE M. MISNER and ATOMIC bound for Sydney N.S. to be scrapped.

OAKGLEN (1) was launched April 21, 1923 as a) WILLIAM H. WARNER.

HOMER D. WILLIAMS was launched in 1917.

April 21, 1998 - The PERE MARQUETTE 41 (former CITY OF MIDLAND 41) was towed to Sturgeon Bay from Muskegon for the remainder of the conversion. She was towed by the Mary Page Hannah and the Carl William Selvick.

On 21 April 1868, GERTRUDE (2-mast wooden schooner, 137', 268 t, built in 1855 at Cleveland) was carrying corn from Chicago to Buffalo when she was cut by the ice four miles west of Mackinaw City and sank in deep water. Her crew made it to shore in the yawl.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Car ferry Badger to celebrate 50 years on May 15

Ludington's Waterfront Park will be the site of a special ceremony at 11 a.m. May 15 when the Lake Michigan Carferry Service celebrates the 50th anniversary of the car ferry Badger and the State of Michigan announces a new tourism initiative in concert with Michigan Week.

Dr. William Anderson, director of the Michigan Department of History, Arts and Libraries, and Travel Michigan Vice President George Zimmermann will join representatives of Lake Michigan Carferry Service in re-christening the Badger. That will be followed by a brief media shoreline cruise showcasing Michigan products and cultural tourism entertainment.

Anderson and Zimmermann also are expected to make an announcement about a new tourism initiative.

"The Badger has been part of the Lake Michigan landscape for as long as most people can remember," said Robert Manglitz, president and chief executive officer of the Lake Michigan Carferry Service. "She writes a proud chapter in the freight and steamship story that has colored Great Lakes history for more than 125 years. We are honored to have the opportunity to re-christen the Badger as part of Michigan Week at the beginning of the summer tourism season."

"Michigan's Great Lakes heritage is one of the reasons Michigan is able to attract millions of visitors each year," said Travel Michigan's Zimmermann. "Those visitors spend more than $12.8 billion annually exploring our great state, creating 173,000 Michigan jobs and generating $812 million in state and local taxes."

The Badger provides daily service between Ludington and Manitowoc, Wis., from mid-May until mid-October. She can accommodate 620 passengers, 180 automobiles, tour buses, RVs and semi-trucks. During the four-hour cruise, passengers can enjoy two restaurants, shopping, live entertainment, a maritime museum and a new children's play area. Staterooms are available for privacy or a place to rest.

Lake Michigan Carferry.

Reported by: Dave Martin

Buffalo off Dry Dock, Frantz Next

On Friday the Buffalo was removed from the Toledo Shiprepair dry dock and was docked at the old Interlake Iron Dock.

Once the dry dock blocks are reset the Joseph H. Frantz should be the next vessel to go in. Dry docking should take place early this week and is not expected to take long. The Frantz is then expected to fit out and enter service under charter to Kinsman.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

St. John Downbound

Saturday the J.S. St. John was under tow in the Welland Canal heading for Hamilton. The Nadro tug Vigilant I towed the vessel over night and cleared the canal early Saturday morning.

It is unknown what type of work the St. John will under go, last year the vessel was placed on the Port Weller Dry Dock for repairs. This year Port Weller Dry Docks is full.

Reported by: Jim Sprunt

Duluth Update

Saturday the Great Lakes Trader waiting to load at the old BN docks in Superior. It was waiting for the Reserve to finish loading. The Michipicoten, former Elton Hoyt 2nd, remains in the dry-dock. Her name boards and running lights have been removed. The Chios Pride was at the Port Terminal preparing to depart with the help of tugs. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutters Morro Bay and Mackinaw were docked behind the DECC right by the Vista Fleet dock.

Great Lakes Trader waits.
Chios Pride ready to depart.
Close up.
Morro bay.
Stern view.

Reported by: Glenn Blaszkiewicz

Marquette News

The ever-changing schedule at Marquette now has the Saginaw in very early on Sunday to load ore. The Mesabi Miner is expected with a load of coal for the Presque Isle steam plant on Monday, and H. Lee White with a load of stone for the lower harbor. The White will then shift to the ore dock, probably on Tuesday. The Mississagi is also expected on Monday with a load of coke breeze, but will have to wait for the Miner to finish. The Mississagi will also take on a load of ore once she's finished unloading. The Barker and Lee A. Tregurtha will possibly be in on Tuesday.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Saginaw News

The tug Karen Andrie and Barge A-397 entered the Saginaw River passing the Front Range during the afternoon on Saturday. The pair continued upriver to the Triple Clean Liquifuels Dock to unload. They are the third tug and barge to unload there this week. Earlier in the week the Barbara Andrie and the James A. Hannah also unloaded their barges at the terminal.

The USCG Cutter Bramble continues to work aids to navigation in the Saginaw River Entrance Channel.

Luedtke Engineering has completed at multi-year project of removing contaminated soil from hotspots along the Saginaw River and Bay. The company is in the process of picking up equipment and getting ready to move on to their next job in Ohio.

Tug Karen Andrie and A-397 upbound at the Essroc Terminal.
Tug close up.
Another view.
Tug Kurt Luedtke and Derrick Barge 16 upbound at Independence Bridge.
Tug close up.
Another view.

Reported by: Todd Shorkey

Rouge River Update

Friday afternoon Interlake's Charles M. Beeghly was upbound through the Fort St. Bridge with a load of pellets bound for Rouge Steel. This is one of Rouge Steel's first shipments of the season. The Beeghly was assisted at the stern by the Great Lakes Towing tug Maine.

Charles M. Beeghly inbound.
Stern view.
Tug Maine.
Magnetic with a barge ahead downbound the Detroit River Friday afternoon.

Reported by: Nathan Nietering and Jon Paul Kubala

Toronto Update

The saltie Kapitonas A. Luka departed from Pier 52 early Saturday. The cement boat Stephen B. Roman arrived at Lafarge dock that morning.

The tug Wendy B., which has been in Toronto for almost a year due to an accident the owner had while aboard, departed Saturday by way of the West Gap.

The charter vessel Pioneer Queen has been lifted by the Atlas Crane and is "in slings" ashore awaiting its 5 year inspection.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Coast Guard Prepares in Cobourg

Saturday Canadian Coast Guard crews were preparing for the 2003 season at Cobourg. Cobourg is located about an hour east of Toronto on the north shore of Lake Ontario. Station crew members Scott Gillespie, Colin Slade and Greg Waldeck are preparing the Canadian Coast Guard ship Advent and a Zodiac for the Lake Ontario 2003 patrol season.

Advil in her home port.
Stern view.
Crew members fit out the Zodiac.

Reported by: Jim Gallacher

Today in Great Lakes History - April 20

On April 20, 1960, the Arthur B. Homer entered service. She was the last vessel built by the Great Lakes Engineering Works.

The 3-mast schooner CAMDEN was launched at Cleveland on 20 April 1872.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Three salties open Detroit's international shipping season

For the first time ever, Detroit on April 15 welcomed not one, but three, oceangoing vessels to inaugurate the city's 2003 shipping season.

The Lake Ontario, a Marshall Islands-flagged vessel, was officially the first ship that arrived at Detroit Marine Terminal, Inc. at 6:30 a.m. At 7 a.m., Goviken, the Bahamian-flagged ship arrived at DMT. Its arrival was followed by the Hong Kong-flagged vessel, Federal Oshima, which docked at DSC, Trenton, at 8:30 a.m.

The Lake Ontario set sail on March 20 from Antwerp, Belgium, with a cargo of steel products under the command of Captain Marec Stachyra. Lake Ontario is 730 feet long with a 76 foot beam.

On March 29 the Goviken set sail from Antwerp, Belgium, also with a cargo of steel products, under the command of Captain Romulo A. Cena. Goviken is 730 feet long with a 76 foot beam.

The Federal Oshima set sail April 13 from Hamilton, Ontario, in ballast under the command of Captain V.S. Chheteri. Federal Oshima is 656 feet long with a 78 foot beam.

Oshima unloading. Jon Paul Kubala
Another view. Jon Paul Kubala

Reported by: Andy Severson

First New Saltie

The 225-foot Carola went to anchor off Port Weller early Saturday morning. The vessel is the first new foreign caller to the Seaway this season. She will transit the Welland Canal on Saturday and head across Lake Erie for Cleveland.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt

St. John Departs Erie

Friday morning the J.S. St. John departed Erie under tow of the tug Vigilant 1. The tow departed at noon and sailed east for the Welland Canal area. It is unknown where the pair were headed. Last year the vessel was dry docked at Port Weller Dry Docks for work on the shaft bearing.

In other Erie news, the David Z. Norton is due to be the second vessel of the year on Sunday. The Norton is due at 8:00 a.m. Sunday morning with stone from Cedarville.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

U.S. Steel likely to be buyer of National Steel

U.S. Steel Corp. goes to federal bankruptcy court on Monday as the overwhelming favorite in the race to purchase bankrupt National Steel Corp.

With a new bid of $1.05 billion, U.S. Steel was selected Thursday by National Steel Corp. as the highest and best bidder for National's steelmaking, finishing and iron ore facilities. The bid topped an earlier U.S. Steel offer of $975 million.

With the new bid -- and with U.S. Steel holding a new labor agreement covering U.S. Steel and National workers -- National terminated a prior purchase agreement with AK Steel Corp. and moved to sell its assets to U.S. Steel.

U.S. Steel's winning bid has been approved by National's board of directors and on Monday will be presented for approval to U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Chicago.

U.S. Steel's bid includes National Steel Pellet Co. in Keewatin, Minn. This taconite plant, the future of which has long been in question, ships about 5.4 million tons of pellets each year. Much of that tonnage goes through the BNSF ore dock in Superior to be loaded aboard Great Lakes freighters.

Officials of U.S. Steel would not provide details on how the company intends to operate the NSPC taconite plant.

"We are buying these facilities with the intention of running them. It (the taconite plant) will be integrated in some way with our taconite facility," John Armstrong, a U.S. Steel spokesman, told the Duluth News Tribune.

U.S. Steel owns and operates Minntac Mine in Mountain Iron. Minntac is North America's largest taconite plant and can produce about 15.8 million tons of taconite pellets per year. It ships pellets through the DMIR ore docks in Two Harbors and Duluth.

Ratification of the tentative labor agreement would also mean that U.S. Steel would cancel a previously announced sale of Minntac to Apollo Management, a New York investment firm.

Reported by: Chris Jackson

Twin Ports Report

Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay spent part of Friday trying to break up the ice jam at the Duluth ship canal while vessel traffic continued using Superior entry.

The 140-foot cutter spent part of the day working in the ship canal and just off the end of the entry, where a northeast wind has once again packed in a field of ice about 2.5 miles wide. Easterly winds predicted for the next day or two won't do anything to ease the situation. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw was expected to arrive off Duluth Friday evening or Saturday morning.

Vessels were able to use the Superior entry Friday. Reserve arrived late in the day to fuel before shifting to the BNSF ore dock after the Burns Harbor was done loading.

The ice jam is being blamed for a slow start to the Twin Ports shipping season, according to the Duluth News Tribune.

As of Thursday, about 52 commercial vessels -- lakers and salties -- had arrived in the harbor. That's compared to about 76 a year ago.

Weather is slowing traffic "and that screws up everything," said Fred Shusterich, president of Midwest Energy Resources Co. coal terminal.

On Thursday, the Frontenac sat about half a mile outside the Superior entry for 17 hours, waiting for a place at the Burlington Northern Santa Fe dock. Ice blocked the way for the George A. Stinson, which was trying to leave Burlington's taconite loading facility. The Stinson, along with Mesabi Miner and CSL Laurentien, could only get out of port with Coast Guard assistance.

Midwest Energy Resources is 300,000 tons behind its plan for shipments to date, Shusterich told the newspaper. That's about five cargoes for a 1,000-foot vessel -- not a serious problem because there's plenty of time to make up for it later in the season, he said.

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette News

The Lee A. Tregurtha brought a load of coal to the Presque Isle Power Plant on Friday, then spent over two and a half hours shifting back and forth trying to move the ice out of the way between her and the ore dock so she could tie up and load ore.

The Saginaw is expected early Sunday morning to take on ore, and the Mesabi Miner is due later that day with a load of coal. The H. Lee White may be bringing a load of stone to the lower harbor and then shifting on Monday to the ore dock. The Mississagi is expected with a load of coke breeze, and then she'll take on a load of ore. Her arrival time is still not determined.

Lee A. unloading.
Close up.
Another view.
Coal steaming.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Green Bay Update

The Alpena arrived in Green Bay this afternoon at 1300 to unload at Lafarge. Departure is expected to be 0700 Saturday. The John J. Boland arrived Green Bay 2130 Friday night with 21,270 tons of limestone for Western Lime. Departure is expected around 0400-0600. Traffic due next week is the Barbra Andrie for Koch Materials on Monday and the Pere Marquette with pig iron for the Fox River dock on Tuesday. The Mississagi is due possibly on Friday.

Reported by: Jason Leino

Owen Sound Report

The Canadian Coast Guard Ship Griffon arrived shortly after 8 a.m. Friday morning and unloaded a truck load of large cement blocks. The Griffon departed about 11 a.m. Friday.

The Cedarglen continued unloading through out the day at the grain elevator.

Griffon arrives.
Cedarglen unloading.
Pictures taken Thursday by Keith Fawcett
Cedarglen appeared to have some trouble reaching the dock Thursday.
She ran at full throttle for about one minute before she started moving.

Reported by: Ed Saliwonchyk

Welland Canal Update

Friday was a busy day on the Welland Canal.

Isolda upbound above Lock 7.
Stern View.
Passing the Quebecois.
Quebecois downbound with wheat for Baie Comeau.
Stern View above Lock 7.
Vancouverborg Upbound above Lock 7.
Stern View.
Passing the John D. Leitch.
John D. Leitch downbound with coal for Hamilton.
Atlantic Huron at Port Weller Dry Dock.
Quebecois downbound above Lock 3.
Stern View.
Lake Guardian upbound below Lock 1, in ballast for Duluth.
Algocape upbound below Lock 1, ballast from Hamilton bound for Thunder Bay.
Stern View.
Kinsman Independent in Buffalo.
Aquarama in Buffalo.
Another View.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Hamilton Report

The Gordon C. Leitch was unloading iron ore at Dofasco Friday afternoon while being refueled by the Hamilton Energy. Over at Pier 25, the tug Reliance with barge PML 2501 were just casting off at 1:15 p.m.

Seen from the Burlington Piers was a CSL vessel that had transited the Burlington Canal shortly afternoon and was seen heading towards the Welland Canal. At 1:45 p.m. the Reliance and PML 2501 transited the canal and headed for the Welland Canal.

The CSL Niagara was unloading coal at Stelco and finished just before 2 p.m. About 15 minutes later the Niagara transited the canal and headed for the Welland Canal.

Pictures by Chris Simpson
CSL Niagara departs.
Stern view.

Reported by: Patricia Burgon

Toronto Update

The saltie Makeevka continued unloading raw sugar at Redpath Friday, the vessel arrived in port on Wednesday.

The salty Kapitonas A. Luka arrived at pier 52 Thursday and remained there on Friday.

The self-unloader Algoway went to anchor in Humber Bay on Thursday due to high winds. She entered port during the night and finished unloading in the Turning Basin Friday afternoon and departed.

The Toronto Brigantines Pathfinder and Playfair were out on the bay Friday. The tour boat Miss Kim Simpson was relaunched at the Outer Harbour Marina and it retuned to its summer dock also on Friday afternoon.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Clarkson Update

The Synnove Knutsen arrived Friday morning from the Seaway. She was discharging cargo at the Petro Canada dock. The Knutsen is the third tanker to call on the Lake Ontario port this season.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Today in Great Lakes History - April 19

Sea trials were completed for the CANADIAN TRANSPORT April 19, 1979 and she departed Port Weller on her maiden voyage the next morning.

The GEORGE A. STINSON's self-unloading boom collapsed onto her deck due to a mechanical failure on the night of April 19, 1983 at Detroit. No injuries were reported. She continued hauling cargoes without a boom most of the year until it was replaced on September 20th of that year.

On April 19, 1951 CLIFFS VICTORY began her much publicized 1,000 mile journey up the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers through the Illinois Waterway pushed by a towboat to Lockport, IL where two GLT tugs took up the tow through the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal.

HUTCHCLIFFE HALL was launched April 19, 1954.

RICHARD TRIMBLE was launched April 19, 1913.

The A.M. BYERS sank in a head-on collision with the upbound steamer E.M. FORD, whose steering gear failed, on the night of April 19, 1956. The collision occurred 2 1/2 miles south of Algonac, MI in the South Channel of the St. Clair River.

On April 19, 1950, the Wilfred Sykes entered service, departing Lorain, Ohio for Toledo, Ohio to load coal on her maiden voyage. The Sykes also became the largest vessel on the Great Lakes, taking the honor from Pittsburgh Steamship Company's Leon Fraser class (the "Supers") which had held it since June 21, 1942.

April 19, 1917 - The ANN ARBOR NO. 5 broke off her starboard shaft and bent the rudder stock on the rocky corner of the old Goodrich dock in Manitowoc.

On 19 April 1880, the Port Huron Times reported the results of a severe gale: "The schooner CHRIS GROVER, ashore near Oscoda, is reported going to pieces. The crew is aboard. The schooner ATHENIAN, lumber laden, is reported to have gone ashore off Au Sable and to be a complete wreck. The schooner HATTIE JOHNSON is abandoned on Goose Island shoal. The cabin and part of her deck are gone. The stern is gone from her mizzen and the gale probably broke her up completely and her outfit and cargo may prove a total loss." The GROVE and the JOHNSON were later recovered and put back in service.

On 19 April 1884, EUROPE (wooden propeller, passenger/package freight vessel, 136', 628 gt, built in 1870 at St. Catharine's, Ontario) was almost totally destroyed by fire at St. Catharine's. The remains of her hull were later rebuilt as the barge REGINA.

Data from: Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Barge Towed to Sarnia

The McNally barge that flipped in the St. Clair River Tuesday was towed upbound to Sarnia on Thursday. Still upside down, the mud scow was pulled upbound by the tug Bagotville Thursday morning. The tug and barge made very slow progress against the current and wind.

The tug Sandra Mary had taken the dredge back to Port Lambton and then returned up river to help with the tow. The tow took over six hours to make it to Sarnia's North Slip.

Reported by: Barry Hiscocks

Mackinaw Heads for Duluth

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw was working in the ice channel from Whitefish Bay to Soo Locks Thursday. She locked downbound to Soo Coast Guard Base to resupply.

After a brief stop that afternoon the Mackinaw was underway locking through upbound working the ice in the upper river then into Lake Superior to head for Duluth.

Reported by: Scott Best

Cedarglen Opens Owen Sound

The Cedarglen was the first ship of the 2003 season to arrive in the Owen Sound harbor. It arrived shortly after 6 p.m. Thursday evening to unload a cargo of grain at the elevator.

Cedarglen arrives. Ed Saliwonchyk

Reported by: Ed Saliwonchyk and D. Sherman

Lorain Pellet Terminal demolition nearing completion

Thursday the rolled conveyor belts that were part of the Lorain Pellet Terminal were loaded onto a flatbed truck to make the trip to the Cleveland Bulk Terminal site. The entire facility is being moved to Whiskey Island in Cleveland. The move will continue later this spring as larger pieces are moved by barge.

Taconite shipments continue through Cleveland with larger vessels delivering pellets to the bulk terminal. The pellets are then loaded using portable conveyors onto smaller vessels for the trip up the Cuyahoga River to the ISG Steel Mill. The Fred R. White Jr. has been running the shuttle to the steel mill.

Dissasembled hopper.
Another view.
tug Dawn Marie on the Black River across from the former American Shipbuilding, Lorain site. Construction there is nearly complete on the first phase luxury apartments, condos, and pleasure boat slips.

Reported by: Karen Zehe

Historic Ferry Service in Jeopardy

The Wolfe Island, Ont. to Cape Vincent, NY ferry service may still be in jeopardy for this season. The tight new US border restrictions mandated a new $ 400,000 customs terminal on the American side at Cape Vincent. The small town has raised the money to build the terminal but it may mean a delay of six weeks before the terminal is complete and the ferry could start the crossings.

Tight new regulations from Transport Canada now seem to be about to doom the service. Canada to U.S. ferry operators who leave a location in the U.S. with passengers that are not pre-cleared must verify the identity of the people as soon as they are on board. Operators must also insure that their terminals are patrolled regularly by police officers.

The Township of Wolfe Island pays for a weekly OPP patrol now but the patrols required would cost $124,000 per year.

The Horne family is working with Federal and Provincial representatives to try and solve the problem. At the moment, the best that will happen is a six week delay and loss of business, while the worst will be a complete shut down of the service. This border crossing ferry carries about 94,000 people per year.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Close Call at Port Credit

Two pleasure boaters had a close call Thursday on the stormy waters of Lake Ontario. The boat they were in capsized in large waves about a half mile off shore. The boat was blown steadily westward towards the breakwall at the Port Credit Marina.

People on shore noticed the capsized boat with the two men sitting on it and called 911. The Peel Regional Police Marine unit responded and was able rescue the two boaters before they were driven onto the rocks of the breakwater.

Reported by: Rob Archer

Twin Ports Report

Ship traffic in the Twin Ports was returning to normal Thursday following the storm that once again packed ice into the western tip of Lake Superior and the Duluth and Superior entries.

Duluth entry apparently remained closed due to the ice jam. At Superior entry, two vessels, including what appeared to be the Edwin H. Gott, were attempting to push through the ice Thursday afternoon with assistance of another vessel that appeared to be the Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay.

Herbert C. Jackson was unloading stone at the CLM dock Thursday afternoon. On Wednesday, the vessel became stuck in the ice as it tried to enter port through Superior entry during the nor'easter. Morro Bay helped free the Jackson. Once that was done, the Coast Guard closed the port until the winds subsided overnight. After unloading stone, the Jackson is scheduled to load grain at Cenex Harvest States grain terminal.

Reported by: Al Miller

Green Bay Update

The Catherine Desgagnes departed Green Bay Thursday morning after day break. The John G. Munson arrived about 9 a.m. from Port Inland with 20,000 tons of stone for Great Lakes Calcium.

The Arthur M. Anderson departed shortly before noon with assistance from the tug Texas. Traffic expected on Friday is the John J. Boland with limestone for Western Lime and the Alpena with cement for Lafarge.

Reported by: Jason Leino

Catherine Desgagnes in Marinette

The Catherine Desgagnes entered the Menominee River Thursday morning with a load of pig iron for Marinette Fuel & Dock. She had dropped off part of her cargo in Green Bay, WI on Tuesday. Extreme weather, including thunder and lightning, caused unloading delays in Green Bay; high winds further impeded her unloading and departure.

The ice in the bay of Green Bay off Menominee, which had been blown out by offshore winds on Monday, has been blown back in by the recent storm. The Pere Marquette 41 was finally able to get out of the harbor and underway Thursday afternoon after the high winds of the past couple days subsided.

Pictures by Dick Lund
Catherine Desgagnes unloading at Marinette Fuel & Dock.
Pere Marquette departs Menominee River outside the ice field.

Reported by: Dick Lund and Chad Michaels

Goderich Update

Wednesday the Agawa Canyon, fresh out of lay up, loaded salt at the mine in Goderich. She departed in windy conditions for Detroit.

Reported by: Lisa Stuparyk

Saginaw Update

The Tug James A. Hannah and her tank barge arrived at the Triple Clean Liquifuels Dock in Essexville during the morning on Wednesday. Once she finished her unload, she departed Triple Clean and proceeded across the river to the Dow Chemical Dock to change from a pushing position to a pulling position. The Hannah was outbound Thursday night around 7pm.

Inbound Thursday night was the CSL Tadoussac. She arrived at the Essroc Terminal around 9pm to unload cement clinker. The is the second visit of the season for the Tadoussac and still the only non tug-barge vessel to call on the Saginaw River this season.

Tug James A. Hannah at Triple Clean on Wednesday.
View of tug and barge.
CSL Tadoussac approaching the Essroc Terminal.
Close up of the Tadoussac.
Another view.

Reported by: Todd Shorkey

Tour Boats Coming to Life

A definite sign of Spring is the activity on the Kingston and the Islands Boatline vessels. The Island Star (ex Bateau Mouche) catamaran is being readied for some early season cruises. Engines are being tested after winter overhauls. Various inspections have already been carried out. The Island Queen is undergoing extensive interior renovations and painting. The Island Belle ( ex Spirit of Brockville) is ready for a new coat of paint as well. Some work is being done on the St. Lawrence Cruise Line's Canadian Empress. The Ottawa River Boat vessels Senator and Sea Prince are still tied up in Kingston's inner harbor.

On the Seaway, the Federal St. Laurent (heading for the canal), Nanticoke ( for Hamilton) Doug McKeil and barge and Birchglen are all westbound. The Canadian Prospector, Algomarine and Stolt Aspiration are Eastbound. The research vessel Lake Guardian was also eastbound on Lake Ontario.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

Milo upbound for the Seaway, April 11.
Algosteel, a rare caller here, downbound from Seaway, April 11.
Stern view.
Ferbec downbound from Montréal after winter layup April12 .
Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin downbound from Seaway, April 14.
Sandviken upbound for the Seaway, April 14.
Birchglen meeting Sandviken, April 14.
Birchglen (ex-Mackenzie) on her first trip downriver as a CSL ship April 14.
Birchglen downbound from the Seaway, April 14.
Andre H. downbound towing a barge from Montréal to Québec City, April 16.
Marion Green, under charter to Canada Maritime, April 16.
Marion Green, upbound for Montréal berth 62, April 16.
Carola, to be first new foreign caller to the Seaway, April 16.
Carola, upbound for Montréal berth 71, April 16.
Tranquillity, upbound from Contrecoeur to Montréal berth 46, April 17.
Varg, quite a large size tanker downbound from Montréal berth 94, April 17.

Reported by: Marc Piché

DeTour Reef Light Cruise

DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society’s (DRLPS) sixth annual, exciting, entertaining and educational cruise to the DeTour Reef Lighthouse, and up the historic St. Mary’s River and through the famous Soo Locks is scheduled for Father’s Day, Sunday, June 15.

Join DRLPS on this popular cruise that will take you to the unique offshore Art-Deco style DeTour Reef Lighthouse where you can observe and photograph the restoration work in progress. The Cruise continues up the picturesque 60-mile St. Mary’s River, a waterway rich in history joining Lake Huron and Lake Superior, past other lighthouses and old steamer fuel docks that stretch out into the river. The boat will also take you through the historic and exciting Soo Locks with the big Lake freighters. First built in 1855, the locks enable ships to bypass the 21-foot drop of the boiling St. Mary’s Rapids on their way to and from Lake Superior.

The Cruise boards at the DeTour Village Ferry Dock at 10:20 a.m. and leaves the dock at 10:45 a.m., returning by chartered bus from Soo Locks Boat Tours dock in Sault Ste Marie, arriving back to DeTour Village at about 6:00 p.m. Cost is $80 per person with children under five free and includes, bagels, donuts, lunch, snacks, tour narration, cash bar and a chance to win a $1,000 cash prize and other quality prizes. This year’s cruise will honor Drummond Island’s Sesquicentennial (150th) Birthday Celebration.

The DRLPS was established in 1998 as a 501c3 nonprofit organization to restore and preserve the DeTour Reef Light located a mile offshore in northern Lake Huron at the entrance to the St. Mary’s River in DeTour Passage at the eastern end of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula between DeTour Village and Drummond Island.

For more information or cruise reservations, please call the DRLPS at 906-493-6711.Visit DRLPS on the web at

Today in Great Lakes History - April 18

On her maiden voyage April 18, 1980 the AMERICAN MARINER left Sturgeon Bay light for Escanaba, Mich. to load 31,322 gross tons of taconite pellets for Ashtabula, Ohio and arrived there on April 26th.

The MONTCLIFFE HALL began trading on the Great Lakes on April 18,1978.

The PATERSON (2) was launched April 18, 1985. She was the last straight deck bulk freighter built on the Lakes and was built to the maximum size permitted to lock through the Seaway.

BETHLEHEM (2) was launched April 18, 1917 as a) MIDVALE.

Problems occurred on the ALASTAIR GUTHRIE's first trip of the year on April 18, 1979 when she began taking on water in the engine room while loading grain at the International Multifoods elevator at Duluth, MN. Her stern settled to the bottom of the slip with 12 feet of water in the engine room.

The RED WING (2) was sold for scrap on April 18, 1986.

On April 18, 1960 the ROBERT C. STANLEY struck Vidal Shoal in Whitefish Bay about 1.5 miles above the Soo Locks, and tore a hole in her bottom.

STONEFAX was launched April 18, 1903 as the straight deck Lake Bulk Freighter a) SINALOA.

April 18, 1936 - Albert W. Ackerman, chief engineer of the Pere Marquette carferries for 35 years, died (Friday afternoon) at the Paulina Stearns hospital.

On 18 April 1848, the wooden schooner TRIBUNE went missing in lower Lake Michigan. Her fate was unknown until native fishermen discovered her masts standing upright off Cathead Point in November 1849. All ten of her crew were lost.

On 18 April 1885, the schooner-barge ELEANOR was launched at Mount Clemens, Michigan. Her dimensions were 185' overall, 32' beam and 11'3" depth. She had three spars and was the consort of the steam barge A. WESTON. She was built for the Tonawanda Barge Line and was named after Capt. William DuLac's wife.

Data from: Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Sunken Barge Salvage

Efforts were underway most of the day Wednesday to salvage and turn upright the McNally Marine barge which capsized in the St. Clair River on Tuesday afternoon. The tug Bagotville arrived on scene mid -morning with a crane barge in tow, accompanied by the tug Sandra Mary. Crews repositioned the barge to prepare for the operation.

A dive tug operated by Gordon’s Marine of Sarnia arrived later in the morning and work began. A diver went under the overturned barge to secure cables which would later be used in attempts to right the barge.

Lines and cables were passed to the two tugs and the crane on the dredge was also in use in efforts to complete the operation.

Several attempts were made, but crews were faced with towlines and cables parting. The diver returned to the water on several occasions. A stiff wind from the north-north east and temperatures that were over 40 degrees cooler than on Tuesday added to the setting.

The operation was called off for the night at 7:30 as light faded. It is expected that the righting of the barge will resume on Thursday morning with the possible assistance of a third tug.

Salvage efforts Wednesday by Barry Hiscocks
Bagotville is towing the dredge and the Sandra Mary is running beside her.
The dump scow on the Ontario shore.

Pictures of the barge flipping Tuesday by Dennis Hart
Barge sinking.
Continuing to roll over.
On its side.
Barge upside down but still floating.
Floating down river.
Bagotville makes a wide turn to retrieve the barge.
Coming back to the barge.
Close up.

Reported by: Barry Hiscocks

Twin Ports Report

A northeast storm with winds up to 50 knots and waves to 11 feet Wednesday night delayed several vessels in western Lake Superior. Edwin H. Gott completed its repairs but remained at Hallett 5 in Duluth on Wednesday after waiting for weather. Presque Isle finished loading at Two Harbors but decided to delay its departure until later in the night or today. A vessel that appeared to be Herbert C. Jackson was picking its way through the ice field off Superior entry on Wednesday morning and, from a distance, appeared to be getting assistance from a tug in an effort to push through the diminishing but still tightly packed ice field off the Twin Ports. Another vessel that appeared to be American Mariner was approaching Superior entry Wednesday afternoon, but it was unclear whether the vessel would anchor outside or try to make port in the wind. Elsewhere around the lakes wind also was disrupting traffic. Roger Blough dropped anchor off Holland to wait for the winds to ease before making Gary. Arthur M. Anderson was waiting for weather in Green Bay. Cason J. Callaway was due in Duluth today but might be delayed because of the weather.

Reported by: Al Miller

Alpena Update

Despite strong north easterly winds, the J.A.W Iglehart arrived in port about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon. It loaded cement for Milwaukee and departed by 9 p.m.

The Alpena is expected into Lafarge after midnight on Thursday to load after being delayed from the strong winds. It had anchored Wednesday in the lower St. Marys River to await better weather conditions.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Cresswell Arrives

The Algoma Central Marine self-unloader Peter R. Cresswell was due in Milwaukee Wednesday to unload salt from Goderich. However, strong northeast winds and then heavy fog precluded getting the Cresswell lined up for the Milwaukee piers. Cresswell's Capt. Peter Schultz then turned her for Muskegon to go to anchor. Another attempt at Milwaukee may be made tonight or early Thursday.

Algorail is also due to unload salt in Milwaukee on Thursday, her arrival could also be delayed by weather.

Reported by: Jim Zeirke

Quiet Day in Clarkson

The James Norris arrived late in the morning Wednesday with stone from Colborne, Ontario for St. Lawrence Cement. Last Wednesday saw five ships in the area. Reported by,

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Today in Great Lakes History - April 17

The 610 foot aft section of the JOHN B. AIRD passed upbound through the Soo Canal April 17, 1983 in tow of the tugs WILFRED M. COHEN and JOHN McLEAN heading for Thunder Bay where it was assembled with the 120 foot bow section.

STADACONA (2) was launched April 17, 1929.

April 17, 1970 - The CITY OF FLINT 32 was sold to the Norfolk & Western Railway for $100,000.

On 17 April 1840, the wooden side-wheeler CATARAQUI was burned to a total loss during a great fire which destroyed much of the waterfront area of Kingston, Ontario.

On 17 April 1874, CHARLES J. KERSHAW (wooden propeller, 223', 1324 gt) was launched at the Ballentine shipyard at Bangor, Michigan.

Data from: Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Emerald Star Refloated

Early Wednesday morning the Emerald Star was along side the Purvis Marine Dock in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. Divers reported a dent near the Number 3 ballast tank area but no leaking or holes in the hull. Canadian Coast Guard officials are expected to inspect the Emerald Star Wednesday morning.

Monday the tanker ran aground in the lower Soo Harbor just off the Purvis Marine Dock where they were to unload a cargo of petroleum products.

They became stuck about 300 yards off the Purvis Dock. Shortly after 6:30 p.m. Tuesday evening the Coast Guard requested the Emerald Star to "all stop" in their attempts to work themselves free.

About 11 p.m. the Emerald Star reported they would try to free the vessel by shifting cargo between tanks. The was no damage reported in the initial grounding and no loss of cargo.

Pictures by Scott Best
Emerald Star aground.
Another view of Emerald Star aground in the lower harbor.

Reported by: Scott Best and Kevin Buie

Barge Loses Cargo

A barge loaded with gravel and operated by McNally Marine of Hamilton, Ont. flipped over in the St. Clair River Tuesday afternoon at about 4:30 p.m.

The barge was pushed by the tug Bagotville and downbound for the lower St. Clair River. It lost the gravel load in the shipping channel but remained afloat. The Bagotville was able to push the barge to the Ontario shore just south of the Ontario Hydro Lambton Generating Station at Courtright, Ont. and just north and opposite the Detroit Edison power plant at St. Clair, Mi.

Another McNally Marine tug, the Sandra Mary was upbound from Port Lambton, Ont. and expected to arrive on the scene at about 6:15 p.m. The U.S Coast Guard had a small patrol vessel on the scene as well.

Once the Sandra Mary arrived, she and the Bagotville pushed the barge up on shore as far as possible for the night. Crews used a heaving line and shackle to tie the barge to a large tree. They are expected to take a dredge up to Courtright Wednesday morning and attempt to right the barge. Crews were running pumps to try and stay ahead of the water.

Pictures by Dennis Hart
Barge sinking.
Continuing to roll over.
On its side.
Barge upside down but still floating.
Floating down river.
Bagotville makes a wide turn to retrieve the barge.
Coming back to the barge.
Close up.

The barge and tug were running into moderate swells and gusty winds when the incident occurred.

Other traffic in the St. Clair River Tuesday included the Maumee departing Sarnia upbound for Calcite, Mi. She had been delayed by the loss of power Monday at Imperial Oil in Sarnia.

The Agawa Canyon departed her winter lay up berth at the Sidney Smith dock in Sarnia at 3:30 Tuesday afternoon. She backed down the river to fuel at Imperial Oil and was scheduled to proceed up to Goderich, Ont. to load salt at Sifto for Detroit.

The Agawa Canyon was the last ship of the season to depart winter lay up in Sarnia.

Reported by: Barry Hiscocks

Challenger Departs

The Southdown Challenger departed their Milwaukee lay up dock Tuesday with the help of the G-Tug 'Virginia.' The Challenger needed assistance due to strong southwest winds on. The tow proceeded to the Milwaukee Heavy Lift dock to test run the main engine and then wait for weather.

On Tuesday evening the Burns Harbor completed the installation of their temporary generator on the starboard side of the main deck and departed. The generator will be used until the regular unit is rebuilt and returned to the boat.

Tow line is attached.
Pulling away from the dock.
Turning in the inner harbor.
At the heavy lift dock.
The 1000KW generator on the Burns Harbor's deck.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Iglehart Heads North

Monday afternoon the J.A.W. Iglehart pulled up its anchors, circled and headed north up Lake Michigan. The Iglehart had arrived off St. Joseph, Mi and planned to enter port and unload a cargo of cement. A rail road bridge stuck in the down position caused the Iglehart to go to anchor and wait for an opening .

Tuesday work crews and trucks remained on the CSX Bridge.

Reported by: Matt Cook

Seaway News

CSL's self-unloader bulk carrier M.H. Baker III is to be reflagged from Bahamas to Canada later this month. According to my records, she is registered at Nassau, Bahamas since 1987 and was named Atlantic Superior until 1997. Lately, she was at Point Tupper and was loading for Newington, N.E.

What could be the first new foreign-flag freighter in the Seaway this year is the Carola built three years ago in the Netherlands. She is expected in Montreal Wednesday and her next destination will be Cleveland. Her last port of call overseas was Oxelosund, Sweden

Entering the Seaway Tuesday morning was the Ukrainian flag Makeevka bound for Toronto from Buenaventura, Colombia. During the winter months, her accommodation block has been repainted from white to a yellow color and her funnel markings are new with the letters CMAS painted on it.

A vessel which was a regular visitor to the Great Lakes until 1999 has reappeared lately. The Island Gem entered the Seaway on April 12 bound for Sault Ste. Marie and is loaded with steel. Her previous trip was in June 1999 when she went to Windsor and Toledo.

Reported by: René Beauchamp

Unusual Trips for the Integrity

The tug Jacklyn M and barge Integrity were in Cleveland Tuesday and expected to depart that night. The tug and barge will make a rare trip to Buffalo on Tuesday morning.

Reported by: R. Greathouse

Twin Ports Report

As expected, the ice jam lingering off the Twin Ports returned with the northeast wind Monday night. The jam eased long enough Monday to allow the Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay to enter port through the Duluth ship canal. But by Tuesday morning, the ice field was back snug against the shore, although now only less than a mile wide. By midday, it was still loose enough that the wind was blowing a steady stream of large ice chunks and floes through the canal and into the Duluth inner harbor. The Morro Bay was seen in the ice field off Superior entry at midday but was docked by late afternoon.

As has become the habit, ship traffic continued through Superior entry. Boatwatchers were blessed with two Canadian straight deckers Tuesday. Canadian Miner was loading at Cenex Harvest States 1 while Algocen proceeded slowly down the front channel about 7 a.m. to become the first vessel of the season to unload at the St. Lawrence Cement terminal in Duluth.

Elsewhere, Edwin H. Gott spent the day at Hallett dock undergoing repairs. Chios Pride arrived at midday and docked at the port terminal, where it reportedly was undergoing repairs. Mesabi Miner was due in early evening to load at Midwest Energy Terminal.

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette Update

More changes in the Marquette schedule: The Charles M. Beeghly will be loading early Wednesday morning. The next ship in will be the Lee A. Tregurtha with a load of coal on Friday, then taking on a load of ore.

The Mississagi is expected on Saturday, with the Kaye E. Barker and Saginaw on Sunday.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Soo Traffic

Traffic continued to pass through the locks on Tuesday. The American Mariner arrived Tuesday morning and tied up at the Carbide Dock. She was stopped for reported navigation system repairs.

Pictures by Scott Best
American Mariner tied up at Carbide Dock .
John D Leitch downbound clearing Soo East Pier.
Frontenac locking upbound (Note Emerald Star aground in the background)
Pictures by Bonnie Barnes
American Mariner docked.
Carbide Dock wide view.

Reported by: Scott Best

Busy Day in Green Bay

Tuesday was a busy day in the port of Green Bay with four ships in port.

The day started out with the arrival of the Cuyahoga around 4 a.m. with a cargo of salt for the Fox River Dock. The Cuyahoga began to unload about 5 a.m. was out bound about 7:15 a.m. The Cuyahoga had to tie up on the outside of the slip to wait for the John G. Munson to depart.

The John G. Munson departed with assistance from the tug Texas about 4:30 a.m. after being held overnight due to 40 MPH wind gusts and water that was 13 inches below normal.

The Munson is loading in Port Inland for a return trip to Green Bay sometime on Thursday.

The Catherine Desgagnes arrived in Green Bay at 11 a.m. with a load of pig iron for the Fox River Dock. The Desgagnes will depart sometime Wednesday morning.

Last to arrive in strong winds and high waves was the Arthur M. Anderson carrying a load of coal from Toledo for the C. Reiss Coal Dock. This was the sixth ship of the year and the first one to visit downriver.

Pictures by Jason Leino
Cuyahoga unloading.
Close up.
Stern view.
Stern view.

Pictures by Tim Nixon
Anderson approaching the Main Street Bridge at 2:45 p.m.
Through the bridge.

Pictures by Dick Lund
Catherine Desgagnes at Fox River Dock.
Anderson in lower Fox River.
Another view.
Wide Angle.
Close-up approaching Main Street Bridge.
Wide Angle at Main Street Bridge.

Reported by: Jason Leino, Tim Nixon and Dick Lund

Pere Marquette 41 in Marinette

The tug/barge Undaunted/Pere Marquette 41 arrived at Marinette Fuel & Dock on Tuesday. The barge dropped off a load of limestone from Port Inland and then loaded pig iron "debris".

When Marinette Fuel & Dock takes a load of pig iron it is dropped onto a grate to shake loose any rust and "scale" from the ingots before the load is delivered to a customer. The Waupaca Foundry is the main user of the pig iron and they want it as "clean" as possible.

The Pere Marquette 41 usually hauls one or two loads of this waste out of Marinette each year.

Pere Marquette 41 at Marinette Fuel & Dock.
Close-up of bow, unloaded limestone, and pile of pig iron debris waiting to be loaded.
Close-up of tug, Undaunted.

Reported by: Dick Lund

Goderich News

On Monday the Cedarglen paid a rare visit to Goderich. She docked at the grain terminals and continued loading Tuesday. Also on Monday, the Peter R. Cresswell was at the salt mine loading salt for Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Tuesday the Algorail is loading for Milwaukee in very windy conditions.

Reported by: Lisa Stuparyk

Saginaw Update

The tug Barbara Andrie and her barge departed the Triple Clean Dock late Tuesday morning after unloading there overnight. She proceeded to the Consumers Energy Dock to change to a pulling position before proceeding out onto the Saginaw Bay.

The USCG Cutter Bramble continued working aids to navigation on Tuesday.

Tug Barbara Andrie and Barge A-390 outbound the Saginaw River.
Tug close up.
Stern View approaching Consumers Energy.
USCG Cutter Bramble getting underway.
Turning from dock.
Heading out to the Saginaw Bay.
Close up of Bramble's ribbons.
Bramble's RHI towing a buoy out.

Reported by: Todd Shorkey

Lower Detroit River

On Tuesday the Federal Oshima was docked at the former McLouth Steel plant in Trenton, Mi. The Oshima is loading steel coils for an unknown destination.

Down river, the Phillip R Clarke was unloading at the Wyandotte Power Plant. She finished unloading and departed around 6 p.m.

Federal Oshima docked. Marv Hoffmeyer

Reported by: Marv Hoffmeyer and Jon Paul Kubala

Welland Traffic

Below are images of traffic in the Welland Canal on Tuesday.

Algosoo downbound clear of Lock 3 heading for the Homer Bridge.
Algosoo through Homer Bridge underneath Garden City Skyway en route to Lock 2.
Algoville shows her coming up to Lock 2.
Sidsel Knudsen clearing Lock 2 upbound.
Sidsel Knudsen passing above Lock 2.
CSL Tadoussac tied at the wall below Lock 1.

Reported by: Bill Bird

Toronto Update

McKeil's tugs Progress and Atomic returned from Oshawa Tuesday, but Progress departed later in the day by way of the West Gap, probably bound for Hamilton.

The ferries Ongiara and Thomas Rennie were inspected by Canada Coast Guard Tuesday. The Rennie went to the island on its trials that morning - its first outing of the season.

The small tug Kenteau went on Toronto Drydock late Monday. It is having a new Cat engine installed and some other minor work done.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Kingston News

The CCGC Bittern has been in Kingston since Sunday and was finally able to return to its base at Portsmouth Olympic Harbour, today. After flushing out some ice, the cutter was maneuvered the cutter along side. There is still ice in the harbor and although quite punk, it is still over 6 inches thick in places. Once that clears, the Bittern can be placed at her usual dock.

Some small crystal ice can be seen in the channel but some bays still have some pans of ice in them. There is still some ice piled up on Snake Island, at the entrance to Kingston Harbour. It looks like a giant iceberg. The ice seems to be still doing some damage as several buoys have been reported adrift or off station in the Seaway Channel.

There is a lot of traffic in the Seaway. The English River, Spar Opal, Milo, Pineglen, Makeevka, Isolda, Algocape and Gordon C. Leitch are westbound. The Algosoo and Algosteel are eastbound.

The tug Robinson Bay is working on lighted aids in the Seaway channel.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Menominee Downbound

Tuesday the Menominee was passing through the Welland Canal from Port Colborne to Lock 7. The vessel is in ballast to load wood pulp in Trois Rivieres, Quebec for discharge in Spain.

Rising sun over the Algogulf and Enterprise.
Passing the Petite Forte/St. Mary's Cement at Wharf 16.
Another view.
Landing on the approach wall above Lock 8.
While waiting for traffic Capt. Kai Oestensvik breaks out in a rendition of Fernando by ABBA.
Underway again on the bridge.
Underway on the long level en route to Lock 7.
View from the starboard bridge wing looking towards the portside over/through the gantry cranes.
No ship operates with out this!
Capt. Oestensvik poses with a gift from the Port of Toledo commemorating the first saltwater vessel of 2003.
Close up.
The master doing what he does best......loads of paperwork.
The 1967 built Menominee's classic looking funnel.
Well maintained bridge deck.
Being a classic vessel Menominee still has wooden bridge doors.
Approaching Bridge 11.
Approaching Lock 7.

Reported by: Capt. Alain Gindroz

Today in Great Lakes History - April 16

ALGOWOOD departed on her maiden voyage April 16, 1981 from Owen Sound, Ont. light for Stoneport, MI taking on stone there for Sarnia, Ont.

ALGOLAKE's sea trials were held April 16, 1977.

The BURNS HARBOR's keel was laid on April 16, 1979.

CEMENTKARRIER was launched April 16, 1930.

The W.K. BIXBY (c) SIDNEY E. SMITH, JR. (2) entered service on April 16, 1906.

On April 16, 1986 the WILLIAM A. IRVIN was sold for $110,000 to the Duluth Convention Center Board.

On 16 April 1870, the fore-and-aft schooner L. W. PERRY was launched at the Fitzgerald & Leighton yard in Port Huron. She was owned by J.L. Woods of Lexington, MI and commanded by Capt. M. Hyde. Her dimensions were 128' keel, 133' overall, 26' beam and 9' depth. She cost $29,000 and was built for the lumber trade.

On 16 April 1873, DAVID BALLENTINE (wooden propeller, 221', 972 gt) was launched at Bangor, Michigan. She was built by Thomas Boston.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Holland Opener

Early Monday morning the tug Undaunted and barge Pere Marquette 41 entered Holland, Mi. opening the port for the 2003 season.

The tug and barge traveled to the eastern end of Lake Macatawa to deliver 4,000 tons of Port Inland limestone to Brewer's dock, the first load of the season for the Tulip City. The Verplank dock is expecting a load later this week.

Last Friday, a Coast Guard Aid to Navigation vessel at Holland pulling the winter markers and replacing them with the lighted buoys.

Reported by: Bob VandeVusse

Tense Hours in Sarnia

Monday for a few hours the Sarnia "chemical city" was without power and caused some emergency actions. The sky darkened with black smoke and flames as the refineries and chemical plants blew off some pressure from the stacks.

Sarnia was essentially shut down due the possibility of some chemical releases. Sarnia Police issued a blanket "shelter in place" alert, advising city residents to stay indoors and close all doors and windows.

The Blue Water Bridges and Highway 402 were shut down for a short time, luckily the strong south west winds dissipated the smoke and chemicals but smoke came from the different plants for a few hours in the afternoon.

About 5:30 p.m. the evacuation order was lifted as power returned and things slowly returned to normal.

The James R. Barker, John J. Boland and Algorail, who needed fuel, were all delayed. Also docked in Sarnia were the Algoeast, Stolt Aspiration and the tug James A. Hannah with barge 5101 waiting to load. The departure of the Maumee was also delayed.

Reported by: Tom Gerger and Jamie Kerwin

Challenger Ready to Start Sailing Season

The Southdown Challenger is due to leave her lay-up dock in Milwaukee on Tuesday in the late afternoon or evening. The engine room has been inspected by the Coast Guard and ABS and the crew will participate in fire and boat drills before departing Tuesday. Rumor has it that the Challengers first trip will be right back to Milwaukee.

Reported by: John Cull

Sarnia Departures

The Maumee departed about 7 p.m. Monday evening heading downbound to fuel at Shell Oil. The Mississagi departed her winter lay-up dock in Sarnia shortly before 10 p.m. Monday night. She cleared the dock area after the tug Susan W. Hannah and barge Southdown Conquest cleared the area upbound.

The Mississagi was expected to proceeding down to the Shell Oil Dock to wait behind the Maumee for fuel and will be destined for Cedarville upon departure.

Monday night it appeared that the Maumee at Shell and the Algorail at Imperial Oil may still be experiencing a delay in fueling due to Monday afternoon's power problems.

Also in the area Monday evening was the Frontenac upbound near Stag Island and the Dorothy Ann and Pathfinder docked at the stone dock in Port Huron. The Agawa Canyon remains at the Sydney Smith dock with the steering pole still drawn in, but may depart on Tuesday.

Reported by: Jamie Kerwin and Tom Gerger

Iglehart Waits

The J.A.W. Iglehart remained at anchor late Monday morning about a mile off the piers in St. Joseph. It appeared to be waiting for work to be completed on the CSX train bridge.

The cement carrier arrived about 4:30 a.m.

Reported by: Matt Cook

Containers for Quebec

For the very first time since the mid-seventies, when classic Canadian Pacific Line ended his presence at the Anse-au-Foulon Terminal, a load of containers has been delivered to the Quebec City Harbor.

The MSC Brianna stopped in port at Section 53 (a deep-water dry bulk terminal) en route to Montreal to deliver containers coming from Europe. It is unknown if this operation will become regular caller or if this is only a one time deliver.

Quebec Port Authorities have recently announced that they are considering the return of containers traffic in the harbor. The deep-water terminal, Sections 50 to 53, could receive larger vessels that can't go farther upbound to Montreal.

In others news port news familiar Great Lakes and Seaway users are, or soon will be in port. The Algowood is unloading a cargo of corn at Cargill (Section 107), while Utviken is loading scrap for Charleston, Va. Expected Tuesday are the Birchglen, at Bunge terminal to unload wheat and the largest regular vessel sailing the St. Lawrence River, crude carrier MV Cap Diamant (160,000 dwt). Vessels expected for the end of the week include the Sandviken and Spruceglen.

Reported by: Jean-François Boutin

Rare Trip for Algorail

The Algorail paid a rare visit to the Welland Canal over the weekend. She was down on Saturday with a part load of potash for Hamilton. The Algorail returned upbound, unloaded on Sunday.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt

Risley at the Soo

The Samuel Risley arrived at Soo Sunday night after a full weekend of icebreaking. Monday morning at 4 a.m. the Risley was again underway downbound to assist the CSL Laurentian stuck in the upbound channel at Neebish. Ice had drifted into the channel overnight, slowing and finally stopping the Laurentien, George A Stinson and Jane Ann IV.

After a few passes by the Risley the upbound lane was opened. An upbound FedNav saltie and the Algonova went to anchor in the lower river. Chios Pride went to anchor in the upper river near Gros Cap overnight.

Reported by: Scott Best

Twin Ports Report

Although a warm southerly wind cleared the mouth of the Duluth ship canal of ice and took a stubborn ice field for a ride away from shore, apparently no vessels used the Duluth entry on Monday. The ice field may return today when northeast winds for forecast.

Nonetheless, vessel traffic continued through Superior entry. Alpena arrived, carrying the season's first cement cargo. Canadian Transport loaded coal at Midwest Energy Terminal, with Walter J. McCarthy Jr. scheduled to follow. Burns Harbor was due at BNSF ore dock. Edwin H. Gott was expected at Hallett 5 dock in Duluth for repairs. Once those are complete, it is expected to proceed to Two Harbors to load.

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette Update

Shipping schedules have again been changed. The H. Lee White arrived late at the Shiras steam plant dock, and was scheduled for a late move to the upper harbor to take on a load of ore. Other ships scheduled have been moved back in the lineup. No ships are expected on Tuesday, the Charles M. Beeghly and the Mississagi are due Wednesday, and the Lee A. Tregurtha on Friday.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Green Bay News

The John G. Munson arrived in Green Bay Monday morning about 5:30 a.m. with 20,000 tons of stone for Great Lakes Calcium. The Munson completed unloading shortly afternoon, but remained in port waiting for high winds and low water levels to improve. After departing the Munson was expected to load at Port Inland and return to Green Bay later this week.

The Cuyahoga is due to the Fox River Dock with salt early Wednesday morning. The Arthur M. Anderson is due in later that morning with coal for the C. Reiss coal dock. The Catherine Desgagnes will also visit Green Bay with a load of pig iron for the Fox River Dock.


Reported by: Jason Leino

Saginaw Update

The start of the shipping season on the Saginaw River has been very slow so far this season with the CSL Tadoussac visit last week being the only non tug-barge vessel to call on the river in 2003.

On Monday, the tug Barbara Andrie and her barge arrived at the Triple Clean Liquifuels Dock in Essexville during the afternoon. She was expected to depart about 8 a.m. Tuesday morning.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bramble was working aids to navigation on the Saginaw Bay on Monday. The Bramble will be working aids in the area for the next few days.

Reported by: Todd Shorkey

James R. Barker Downbound

Sunday the James R. barker was downbound at Port Huron loaded for Zug Island.

Below the Blue Water Bridges.
Close up.
Stern view.

Reported by: Clayton Sharrard

Algosoo and Algoway in Detroit

The Algosoo arrived at Zug Island on Saturday loading Coke Breeze (a fine coke dust,) while her fleet mate the Algoway arrive Monday afternoon to unload salt from Goderich at Motor City Materials (Osburn Industries) Dock in River Rouge.

The Algoway was expected to depart with tugs about 7:30 p.m. Monday evening.

The Jackman is expected at the Motor City Materials dock on Thursday to unload part of a load of salt also from Goderich.

Reported by: Gary Angel

Lower Detroit River Traffic

Traffic passing Amherstburg, Ont. over the weekend.

Walter J. McCarthy.
Another view.
McKee Sons.
Canadian Miner.
Great Lakes Trader.
Passing Detroit.

Reported by: Dave Cozens

Cleveland Update

The United State Army Corps of Engineers began their 2003 season on Friday, April 11. The Corps of Engineers' Tug Cheraw and Derrick Simonsen working on Cleveland breakwater on Monday. The Tug Kozoil picked up the Derrick McCauley, which had work done on it over the winter in the Old River Bed, and returned to the Cleveland Office Dock.

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, 155,000 tons of steel coils manufactured by International Steel Group Inc.'s Cleveland Works will be shipped from the Cleveland Port Authority Docks to Southern Europe. This is the first export of steel from Cleveland since 1994. ISG's Cleveland Works is the company that was formed from the bankrupt LTV Steel Cleveland Works.

Tug Cheraw and Derrick Simonsen.
Tug Kozoil and the Derrick McCauley.
Steel coils ready to be loaded.

Reported by: Bill McDonald

Hamilton Update

Sunday afternoon the Federal Oshimo departed Hamilton Harbor transiting the Burlington Ship Canal at 2:10 heading for the Welland Canal. The vessel had been in Hamilton since midweek at anchor in the Harbor and finally this past Friday/Saturday it was at Pier 23 unloading steel products before leaving on Sunday.

A Desgagnes tanker was seen at the Bronte Piers Sunday afternoon from the Burlington Piers.

The Montrealais is still at Pier 9 (north face) and the Canadian Leader at Pier 11. Both pilothouse windows still covered over.

Reported by: Patricia Burgon

Toronto Report

English River departed early Monday morning from the Lafarge cement dock. The McKeil tug Glenevis arrived Sunday.

The Port Authority tug Kenneth A. and workboat Osprey were out Monday preparing to place the airport "Keep Out" and assorted harbor buoys.

The Island Yacht Club tender Prince II, which sank at its dock on Sunday, was refloated by C & C Marine's tug Patricia D. and crane barge Rock Prince.

The ferry Ongiara was refloated at Toronto Dry Dock Monday morning. Ongiara returned to its city dock before noon, but remained out of service for some additional painting.

The charter boat Yankee Lady II came out of winter lay-up Monday and was on the harbor for trials that afternoon.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Federal Weser in Antwerp

FedNav's Federal Weser came into Antwerp, Belgium last Wednesday. She departed the port early Monday morning and was noted leaving the Zandvliet Lock early in the morning.

Federal Weser .
Close up.
Stern shot against the rising sun.

Reported by: Chris Rombouts

Federal Oshima Heads for Detroit

Below are images from the Federal Oshima on a trip from Port Weller to Lock 7 on April 13. The Oshima is headed for Detroit to load steel coils.

View from the Juleen I (Port Weller Pilot Boat) on Lake Ontario at Port Weller.
Upbound in ballast headed for Detroit to load steel.
Lake Ontario pilots disembarking.
Pilot boat breaking away heading back to station in Port Weller Harbor.
Ship's Officers: Capt. Vikram Singh Chhetri (left) and 2nd Officer Nalin Arasu (right).
Pilot and 2nd Officer.
Hard to port and full ahead underway for Port Weller Piers after Algolake clears the canal.
Heading for the piers.
Pilot's view from the conning position on final approach to Port Weller.
Sliding the approach wall below Lock 1. Pilot boat can be seen inbound beside the No.2 crane.
Raising in Lock 1.
Engines stopped, rudder midships.
Port Weller Dry Docks. Atlantic Huron, Haida, Jiimaan and tug James McGrath.

Reported by: Capt. Alain Gindroz

Huron Maid Returns to Detroit

Monday morning the pilot boat Huron Maid departed Port Huron heading down bound for Detroit. The Maid arrived at the J.W. Westcott Co. dock about 2 p.m. and took up position between the J.W. Westcott II and the Joseph J. Hogan. The Huron Maid will be used for pilot changes in the Detroit River.

Huron Maid docked on the Black River.
Entering the St. Clair River and heading downbound.
Crew onboard. (L to R) Dave Tozer, Capt. Sam Buchanan and Mike Crawford.
Former rail ferry Pere Marquette 11.
Tug Manitou.
American Mariner upbound.
Bow look-outs.
Stern view.
Close up.
Downbound view from the stern.
James R. Barker upbound.
River was a little choppy.
Barker's bow lookout camera.
Stern view.
We continue downbound.
Passing Marine City.
Navigation team at work.
A quick stop for lunch on Harsens Island.
At the Diamond Jack Dock.
Algoeast passing.
Wide view.
To go, please.
Lunch onboard we head down the St. Clair Cut Off Channel for Lake St. Clair.
Heading for Lake St. Clair.
Nice day for a boat ride.
Holding the red side of the channel heading for the Crib Light.
John J. Boland passing the St. Clair Crib Light.
Close up of bow.
Accomodations block.
Stern view.
St. Clair Crib Light.
Algorail following.
Close up, Crib Light off in the distance.
Stern view.
Charles M. Beeghly ends the parade.
Stern view.
William Livingston Memorial light at the head of Belle Isle.
Passing Coast Guard Station Belle Isle.
Another view.
Dossin Great Lakes Museum.
Former William Clay Ford pilothouse at the museum.
Dave Tozer takes us past Detroit.
View inside.
Approaching the Westcott Co. dock.

Reported by: N. Schultheiss

Southern Waters Report

On board the Olympia Voyager for the weekend, many interesting photos were taken. The Olympia Voyager was designed with a cruising speed of 28 kts, and made the passage from Port Everglades to Freeport Bahamas, a distance of 110 miles in four hours, dock to dock.

St. Tropez laid up in Port Everglades.
McKinney Maersk inbound Port Everglades.
Enchanted Capri chartered to replace Island Adventure while on Dry dock.
Olympia Voyager at Port Everglades.
Wake of the Olympia Voyager at about 26 kts.
Tug Eileen M. Roehrig and barge Texas at Freeport oil docks.
Red Boat 3 awaiting its fate at Freeport. Red Boat 2 with steam up in background.
Norwegian Sea departing Nassau.
Navigator of the Seas at the Nassau piers.
Former Army T boat Ashepoo at the Nassau piers.
Replica Irish Emigrant ship Jeanie Johnston at the Nassau piers.
HMBH Bahamas, Bahamian navy ship T-160.
Nasau harbor tug Snapper headed to a towing job.

Reported by: Bill Hoey

Today in Great Lakes History - April 15

CANADA MARQUIS was launched April 15, 1983.

SAM LAUD was christened April 15, 1975.

On April 15, 1977 the CONALLISON's self-unloading boom collapsed while unloading coal at the Detroit Edison Trenton, MI power plant in the Trenton Channel of the lower Detroit River.

The W.W. HOLLOWAY suffered a fire in the fantail while in dry dock following her re powering at AmShip on April 15, 1963 causing $15,000 damage.

J.P. MORGAN JR. left Lorain light April 15, 1910 on her maiden voyage to load iron ore at Duluth, MN.

The JOE S. MORROW entered service April 15, 1907.

JOHN P. REISS left Lorain on her maiden voyage April 15, 1910 with coal for Escanaba, MI. She was the first of three bulkers built in 1910 for Reiss interests.

The IMPERIAL COLLINGWOOD began service April 15, 1948. On April 15, 1955, the Detroit Edison (2) entered service, departing Manitowoc, Wisconsin for Port Inland, Michigan on her maiden trip.

On April 15, 1985, the William Clay Ford (2) (formerly Walter A. Sterling and presently Lee A. Tregurtha) departed Fraser Shipyards for the D. M. & I. R. ore docks in West Duluth for her first load in Ford Motor Company colors.

April 15, 1930 - While going up Manitowoc River to dry dock, the WABASH rubbed the parked steamer Theo Roosevelt and damaged her upper works forward.

On 15 April 1862, ELISHA C. BLISH (wooden propeller tug, 81', 107 t, built in 1857 at Black River, OH) sank near shore at Algonac, MI when a steam pump was accidentally left in an open position and she flooded. She was raised and lasted another two years when she "went missing" on Lake Huron.

On 15 April 1872, the Port Huron Daily Times announced that the HURON was chartered by a circus company for the season. They intended to perform at many Lake ports throughout the summer.

Data from: Max Hanley, Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Duluth ice jam starts moving

Southerly winds Sunday night separated much of Duluth's ice jam from the shoreline, opening the mouth of the Duluth ship canal and raising the possibility that the 12-day block of the canal could soon be ending.

A two-mile-wide band of tightly packed ice has halted ship traffic through the Duluth entry since April 3. While ship traffic has continued through Superior entry, three icebreakers have been unable to open a track into the Duluth canal.

However, the overnight southerly winds could add new impetus to icebreaking efforts. By 7 a.m. Monday, the ice field had separated from shore from 21st Avenue East, around the corner of the lake, past the mouth of the ship canal and down Minnesota Point. The edge of the ice field also showed signs of loosening, as smaller fields of ice broke free and began to drift.

Monday's forecast is favorable for breaking the jam, with southeast winds predicted for the entire day. However, winds are expected to switch to the northeast tonight and continue brisk from the northeast Tuesday.

Reported by: Al Miller

Jiimaan Enters Dry Dock

Sunday crews moved the carferry Jiimaan into dry dock at Port Weller Dry Docks. The Jiimaan joined the museum ship Haida in the dry dock. The Haida was moved over and the ferry was placed head of the Haida.

Assisting were tugs James E. McGrath on bow and Glenevis on stern.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt

Huron Maid Heading for Detroit

The pilot boat Huron Maid is expected to depart Port Huron Monday morning and sail downbound for the J.W. Westcott Co. dock in Detroit. The Huron Maid will be used for pilot changes in the Detroit River.

Reported by: Capt. Sam Buchanan

Burns Harbor Stops in Milwaukee

The Burns Harbor arrived in Milwaukee Sunday morning to replace a generator. A crew from Midwest Maritime assisted the Burns Harbor's engineers in removing the generator. The task took most of Sunday due to the tight confines of the engine room. Once a temporary replacement generator is in place the Burns harbor will be departing Milwaukee.

Backing in early Sunday morning
Flags: Canada, Harley Davidson, Cleveland browns, Bethlehem, University of Michigan, Marine Corps, Cleveland Indians.
Landing the deckhands.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Marquette and Escanaba News

The American Republic made a rare stop at Escanaba to load ore, and was followed in by the Lee A. Tregurtha. The Republic had some problems pushing through the ice. She started to back in and then turned and came in bow first.

The Kaye Barker is back in Marquette's schedule, coming in on Tuesday. Busy days ahead for Marquette; the H. Lee White at Shiras to unload stone, then to the upper harbor to load ore, the Charles M. Beeghly and Kaye Barker also on Tuesday, with the Mississagi on Wednesday.

Pictures by Lee Rowe
Republic arriving.
Lee A. arrives.
Republic docked.

Pictures by Eric & Sandy Chapman
Republic loading.
Close up of bow.
Lee A. docked on other side of the dock.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Eric & Sandy Chapman

Goderich Update

Sunday the Algoway was docked at the salt mine, loading. The Algomarine and the Peter R. Cresswell are expected to arrive for salt early this week.

Reported by: Lisa Stuparyk

Sarnia Update

The Agawa Canyon appears to be ready to depart her winter lay-up dock in Sarnia. The winter gangway has been removed from the side and the standard boarding ladder is being used to gain access to the vessel.

The Maumee and the Mississagi have the coverings off of the pilot house windows and the Maumee looks to be lower in the water. The Mississagi still appears to have no steam up and is sitting without ballast.

Reported by: Jamie Kerwin

Green Bay Update

The Cason J. Callaway was the second ship of the season for Green Bay. The Callaway arrived early Sunday morning with 20,000 tons of stone for Great Lakes Calcium. Unloading took about six hours and the Callaway departed Green Bay for Calcite, Mi about 12:45 p.m.

The John G. Munson is due in Green Bay with 20,000 tons of stone for Great Lakes Calcium Monday morning at 5:30. On Tuesday morning the Arthur M. Anderson is due with coal for C. Reiss Coal and the Cuyahoga is due with salt for the Fox River Dock.

Pictures by Tim Nixon
Another view.

Reported by: Jason Leino and Tim Nixon

Cleveland Update

Calumet was working at the Cleveland salt mine Saturday afternoon, transferring salt across the river, with salt being loaded into her hold amidships, and simultaneously being unloaded by her boom onto the south side of the river.

Fred White Jr. was loading at the lakefront. A tug was working on the sewage plant reconstruction job. Helena Oldendorff was still in town. There are seven G tugs at their drydock, along with a Corps derrick.


Reported by: Dave Merchant

Welland Traffic

Saturday morning, the new CSL vessel Birchglen was downbound at Glendale Ave. Bridge. Sunday afternoon the saltie Lake Superior was upbound at Lock 1, while ahead of her in Lock 2 was the Algorail in ballast. Downbound loaded with coal for Lakeview Power Station was the Algolake at Lock 3.

Birchglen downbound.
Close up.
Through the bridge.
Accomodations block.
Stern view.
Pilot house.
Locking through.
Lake Superior upbound.
Close up.
Stern view.
Algolake locking through.
Capt. Anders Rasmussen in the pilothouse window.
Another view.
In the lock.
Toronto Maple Leafs flag waves at the bow.
Stern view departing.

Classic views of Welland Canal Shipping
Tyne Ore downbound above Lock7 1964.
Carrigan Head upbound above Lock7 1963.

Reported by: Alex Howard

Oshawa Update

The Lady Hamilton is in port loading steel products She is expected to depart on Monday, sailing for Hamilton.

The tugs Atomic and Progress are docked in Oshawa.

The Regina Oldendorff departed Oshawa Saturday evening.

Progress arriving.
Atomic and Progress.
Regina Oldendorff departing.
Regina passing.
Another view.
Lady Hamilton inbound.
Progress on the stern.
Close up.
Deck cargo.
Close up.
Preparing to dock.
Close up.
Another view.
Bow close up.
Tugs docked.

Reported by: Jim Gallacher

Marquette Break Out

All photos taken April 7 and 8, 2003 in Marquette / Presque Ile, Michigan.

Kaye E Barker off Marquette.
The loading dock at Marquette North.
Another view.
Train at Marquette North.
Saginaw stuck in the ice off Marquette.
Saginaw’s prop trying to push the ship through the ice.
How the prop can clear the ice from the stern.
Close-up of the forward house of the Saginaw.
The bow of the Saginaw stuck in the ice.
The Thompson’s progressing toward Marquette.
Close-up of the tug in the notch.
Kaye E. Barker stuck in a ridge. Close-up of the forward structure.
Kaye E. Barker stuck in a ridge. Close-up of the after structure.
Kaye E. Barker moving toward the dock.

Reported by: Paul Beesley

Spruceglen Pictures

I am updating the gallery and need a picture of the current Spruceglen (former Fraser). Please e-mail any pictures you may have to:

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Today in Great Lakes History - April 14

On April 14, 1961 the FORT CHAMBLY departed Toronto, Ont. on her maiden voyage bound for the Canadian Lake head.

The COLONEL JAMES PICKANDS sailed on her maiden voyage April 14, 1926 clearing Lorain for Toledo, OH to load coal.

The GLENEAGLES lost her self-unloading boom April 14, 1977 while unloading at the CSL stone dock at Humberstone, Ont.

On April 14, 1984, vessels around the Great Lakes were battling one of the worst season openers for ice in recent memory. The Ernest R. Breech (now Kinsman Independent) and the Herbert C. Jackson spent the entire day battling ice off the Duluth entry, while the St. Clair River was choked with ice.

On 14 April 1873, the Port Huron Daily Times gave the following report of shipbuilding work going on in Port Huron: "Mr. Fitzgerald is up to his eyes in business with a large barge in process of construction and a good sized schooner still on the stocks. Mr. Thomas Dunford has in hand the repairs of the large scow T. S. SKINNER and she is being rapidly healed of the damage done to her in the collision with the INTERNATIONAL last Fall. At Muir's yard the [schooner] canaler on the stocks is rapidly approaching completion. At the [Port Huron] Dry Dock Company's yard, they are busy as bees docking and repairing vessels and work upon the new tug for Moffat & Sons is [being] pushed ahead very rapidly." Unfortunately, later that year the "Panic of 1873" struck and all shipyard work was stopped while the country tried to recover from that economic depression.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Ice Continues to Block Duluth Entry

The approach to the Duluth ship canal has been blocked by ice for more than a week, and it appears that assistance by the best icebreaker of all – Mother Nature – may be needed to remedy the problem.

Northeast winds Saturday prompted the Coast Guard Cutter Sundew to remain at its dock. Ensign Scott Cieplik of the Sundew said working the ice field would be “counterproductive” as long as winds remain from that direction. “Northeast winds are our enemy right now,” he said. “If we were out there, we would just be loosening up the ice and then it would blow in and re-freeze.”

On Saturday morning, the 140-foot Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay arrived off Duluth and took a crack at cutting a track into the ice field. The vessel maneuvered well in the ice but could not get past the point that has stopped the Sundew and the Canadian icebreaker Samuel Risley.

And no wonder. Ensign Cieplik said the ice jam – packed in last week by 72 hours of gale-force northeast winds – consists of three feet of mushy snow atop ice that extends from 10 to 15 feet below the surface.

“All the ice on the lake came in and just overlapped itself,” he said.

The Sundew spent much of the day Wednesday, Thursday and Friday working the ice field. The technique was simple: back and ram.

“We have to put in a lot of work to make a little bit of distance,” Ensign Cieplik said. “We’re backing and ramming. It takes a lot of patience to get through that ice. Chunks of ice the size of Cadillac Escalades are coming up every time we make a run.”

Ensign Cieplik said on the first day of icebreaking the Sundew made about one-tenth of a mile headway into the ice field. On the second day it gained about three-tenths of a mile. At this point, the icebreaker still has about seven- to eight-tenths of a mile to go to reach the mouth of the Duluth ship canal.

The good news is that the ice off Superior entry is thinning and deteriorating.

“The Superior entry track isn’t as clear cut as before, but because the ice is so thin and slushy that’s no concern to mariners,” Ensign Cieplik said “The ice field there doesn’t extend nearly as far and is much thinner than off Duluth.”

Vessels were moving through Superior entry Saturday without problems. Menominee, the Twin Ports first saltie of the season, departed Saturday morning. A 1,000-footer was loading at BNSF ore dock while Paul R. Tregurtha arrived for Midwest Energy Terminal.

After attempting to cut the track, the Morro Bay retreated and entered port through Superior entry. The vessel was expected to take on provisions and then depart for Thunder Bay to assist in icebreaking there.

Reported by: Al Miller

MacArthur Lock in Service

Saturday evening the Mac Lock opened when the Alpena made an upbound passage in the Mac Lock heading upbound to Duluth/Superior with a load of cement.

The Alpena was the first commercial ship to use the lock, a few Coast Guard vessels have used the lock this spring.

The John D Leitch is expected to make a rare daylight passage up the St. Mary's River Sunday heading to Thunder Bay.

Alpena entering the Mac Lock.
Quebecois upbound Saturday evening.
Columbia Star waiting to lock upbound.

Reported by: Scott Best

Michipicoten Dry Docking

Saturday the Michipicoten was still floating in the graving dock at Fraser Shipyards. The Canadian Flag can be seen flying from her stern. No other visible changes have been made.

The vessel was acquired by Lower Lakes Towing on Thursday after the vessel spent a long career with the Interlake Steamship Company.

Dry docking is expected to last about two weeks, the vessel will then sail down bound and crews will complete her Canadian reflagging at Sarnia.

Michipicoten in dry dock. Jody Aho
Canadian flag flying on her stern. Jody Aho

An altered picture of the Elton Hoyt 2nd showing how the Michipicoten will likely appear sailing for Lower Lakes Towing. Richard Jenkins

Reported by: Jody Aho

Chios Pride Departs

The Chios Pride was ready to depart Marinette Fuel & Dock Co. around noon on Saturday. The Selvick tugs Jimmy L and Jacqueline Nicole were in place and ready to assist by 11 a.m.

However, when the Jimmy L left the harbor to break some ice in order to turn the Chios Pride around, they reported ice 10-12 inches thick. The Jimmy L stayed out in the bay breaking ice for close to an hour before returning to harbor to await the Chios Pride's decision whether or not to leave.

The heavy ice and a 15 MPH wind forecast delayed her departure until Saturday evening. About 7 p.m. she cleared the piers entering Lake Michigan.

Jimmy L breaking ice Saturday morning.
Wide view of Jimmy L breaking ice.
Jimmy L passes North Pier Lighthouse on its way back to Marinette.
Chios Pride waiting to depart.

Reported by: Dick Lund

Marquette Update

The Kaye Barker's trip to Marquette has been postponed until the 23rd due to mechanical problems. The next ship in will be the H. Lee White with a load of stone to the Shiras dock on Sunday. She will shift to the ore dock on Monday afternoon. The Charles Beeghly is expected on Tuesday. Others in the line-up are the Mississagi, the Lee A. Tregurtha, the Great Lakes Trader, and the Saginaw.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Thunder Bay Update

Below are recent images of traffic in Thunder Bay.

Algocape loading.
Cedarglen loading.
Canadian Transfer in Pascol Engineering's dry dock.
Algorail moved from dry dock.
Another view.
Stern clear of the dry dock.
Another view.
Bow clear.
Towed to dock.
Wide view.

Reported by: Rob Farrow

Green Bay Opener

The Herbert C. Jackson was the first ship of the 2003 season in Green Bay. The Munson arrived Saturday about 5 p.m. with 13,608 tons of coal for the Fox River Dock. Unloading was expected to be completed by mid night. After departing they will head to load at Stoneport, Mi.

This was one of the latest season starts for Green Bay. Other traffic due in Green Bay this week includes: Cason J. Callaway early Sunday, John G. Munson on Monday, Cuyahoga and Arthur M. Anderson on Tuesday, John G. Munson middle of the week, Catherine Desgagnes and Jacklyn M./ Integrity at the end of the week.

Reported by: Jason Leino

Alpena Update

The Alpena returned to its namesake port early Saturday morning. It tied up at the Lafarge dock to load cement for Superior, WI and departed before daybreak.

With repairs completed, the J.A.W Iglehart left Alpena Friday evening and is heading for South Chicago.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Algoway Passes Port Huron

Saturday the Algoway was downbound passing Port Huron.

Entering the St. Clair River.
Passing under the Blue Water Bridges.
Bow profile.

Reported by: Clayton Sharrard

Cleveland Update

Friday evening Oglebay Norton's 1000-foot Columbia Star entered Cleveland Harbor to unload taconite at Whiskey Island.

Through the outer piers.
Starting its turn in the harbor.
Backing to the Bulk Terminal With the Mather, Old Coast Guard Station and Helena Oldendorff in the distance.
Approaching the dock.
Close up.
Wide shot of the Cleveland skyline and ship.
Helena Oldendorff .

Reported by: Rex Cassidy

Welland Traffic

Friday afternoon saw the CSL Laurentien upbound above Lock 7, with a cargo of Labrador ore destined for Toledo. She passed her fleet mate Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin heading downbound. Also in the system were the Catherine Desgagnes upbound at Homer Bridge and the Canadian Miner Stopped at Lock 3.

CSL Laurentien upbound.
Close up.
Martin approaches.
Stern view.
Paul Martin.
Catherine Desgagnes upbound.
Stern view.
Canadian Miner.
Along side.
View aft.
Close up of stern.
Classic Views of Welland Canal Shipping
Cape Breton Miner is upbound above Lock 7 circa 1964.

Reported by: Alex Howard

Welland Canal, Hamilton and Buffalo

Below are images taken on Thursday Friday.

Welland Canal and Hamilton Friday.
tug Jane Ann IV upbound approaching Lock 1.
Stern view.
Jiimaan at Port Weller Dry docks.
Close up.
Atlantic Huron and H.M.C.S. Haida at P.W.D.D.
Another view.
Lorena I assisted by Mc Keil tugs Lac Manitoba and Glenevis.
Close up.
Lac Manitoba.
Another view.

Buffalo, New York - Thursday
HSBC Arena in Buffalo hosting the 2003 NCAA Frozen Four.
tug New Jersey.
tug Washington.
Kinsman Independent.
fireboat Edward M Cotter.
Buffalo Industrial Diving Co. Dock (BIDCO). Unidentified tug on the left.
Another view.
tug West Wind.
tug Kelly Ann.
tug Buckeye State.
Buffalo State University's Great Lakes Center's R/V Seneca.
Close up of logo.
tug Ruby.
Stern view.
tug Deep See.
Kinsman Independent.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls

Oshawa Opener

The Regina Oldendorff was the first ship of the season to dock at the port of Oshawa, she has been in port for several days loading 17,500 tons of steel billets. She was expected to depart about 5 p.m. Saturday on her way to Montreal, prior to heading for Spain to discharge her cargo.

The Lady Hamilton was due to dock in Oshawa on Saturday.

Regina Oldendorff loading.
Bow close up.
Accomodation block.
Close up loading.
On deck.
Hatch cover.
Deck view.
AB Mr. Muchtar and agent Mr. Balkenende.
Stern view loading.

Reported by: Jim Gallacher

Montreal Harbor

Montreal Harbor was busy on Saturday. The Utviken was in port for repairs after striking the Eisenhower Lock Friday night. The vessel was reported to be damaged under the waterline and taking on some water. She stopped in Montreal harbor for repair work and got back underway at 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon heading for Quebec, section 50.

The Arctic, an OBO ship (ore-bulk-oil) presently in “refit” in Montréal.
Ice breaking bow.
Stern view.
Aivik, a heavy lift, own by NEAS (Nunavut eastern arctic shipping). Ship comes up the seaway to load at Valleyfield and then go up north in the arctic. Will probably go up for Valleyfield at the end of June.
VMS Hercules it’s the heavy lift barge own by the seaway. Presently in the Montreal harbor.

Reported by: Sylvia Masson

St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

Tsuru downbound from Montréal with a load of grain. She's drawing 10.5 meters of water. April 8.
Pineglen downbound from Seaway, April 10.
Pineglen, superstructure, April 10.
Pétrolia Desgagnés, upbound for Seaway, April 11.
Maria Desgagnés upbound for Seaway, April 6.
Stern view.
Jadestar, upbound for Montréal, April 11.
Frontenac upbound for the Seaway, April 11.
Frontenac, stern view, April 11.
Frontenac downbound from the Seaway, April 8.
Canmar Valour, downbound from Montréal, April 11.
Canmar Courage downbound from Montréal, April 11.
Algocape downbound from Seaway, April 11.

Reported by: Marc Piché

Open House

The Great Lakes Maritime Academy held an open house The Great Lakes Maritime Academy in Traverse City, Michigan held an open house Saturday on the Training Ship State of Michigan. The State of Michigan is a vessel is used for onboard training of cadets attending the merchant marine program.

View of the bow.
Crew quarters.
Pilot house.
Engine room.
Life boat drill.

Reported by: Becky H.

Duluth Break Out Continued

All photos taken on April 5, 2003 during the break-out of Duluth / Superior.

Close-up of the Sundew bridge.
Sundew in the ice off Superior, Wisc.
Close up.
Another view of the Sundew.
The Risley backs in close to free the Sundew.
Another close-up of the Sundew bridge.
Arthur M Anderson outbound Superior, Wisc.
(Yes there are 2 83’s!) Indiana Harbor outbound Superior, Wisc.
Canadian Olympic inbound Superior, Wisc.
Canadian Progress inbound Superior, Wisc.

A look inside Superior and Duluth and a trip on the Sundew. All photos taken on April 6, 2003 in Duluth / Superior.
George A Stinson fitting out.
Whaleback museum ship “Meteor”
J B Ford in Duluth.
John Sherwin and Elton Hoyt 2nd in lay-up.
Paul R Tregurtha at the dock in Duluth.
John G Munson finishing off her lay-up.
Samuel Risley comes alongside Sundew in Duluth Harbor.
Another view of the Risley and Sundew together. Some of the crews changed ships for 2 hours to see how the other half lives and works.
The bridge in Duluth.
Inside the wheelhouse on the Sundew
The view from the bridge of the Sundew.
A view of the after deck of the Sundew.
The buoy working deck of the Sundew.
Old style boat falls on the Sundew.
Luffing davits on the Sundew.
The Sundew leaving the Risley.

Tomorrow, photos of the first ships into Marquette North and their struggles to get through the ice.

Reported by: Paul Beesley

Algonova and Federal Yoshino

Below are images taken aboard the Algonova on a trip from Nanticoke to Sarnia and on the Federal Yoshino from Lock 7 to Port Colborne.

Algonova alongside Nanticoke east dock.
Underway bound for Sarnia.
One of two coal hoppers in Nanticoke serving the hydro generating station.
Looking forward in the waning light.
Long Point Bay sunset.
Another view.
After steaming all night we are treated to sunrise over Point Pelee.
Passing Detroit.
Meeting fleet sister Algowood.
Algoma Central Corporation flag flying proudly.
Kaye E Barker below Recors Point.
Approaching Imperial Oil dock in Sarnia 22 hours later.
Final approach.
Securing the ship alongside.
Maumee laid up at the Government Dock in Sarnia.
Waiting for the word to resume sailing.

Early morning on the bridge of the Federal Yoshino.
Approaching Ramey's Bend on a beautiful spring morning.
Pilots view from the "front window" at Ramey's Bend.
Approaching Lock 8. Robin Hood Mill is on the starboard side.
The vessels master Capt. Tong Woong Lee keeping a vigilant watch on proceedings.
Entering Lock 8 the final lock.
Breaking away from the east wall above Lock 8.
Approaching Bridge 21 in the ice free Port Colborne Harbour.
Approaching the Goviken secured at Wharf 16. The scrap yard is ahead on the left.
Headed for Thunder Bay.
Seahound secured behind the pilot boat at the West Street Wharf Port Colborne.

Reported by: Capt. Alain Gindroz

Today in Great Lakes History - April 13

The RICHARD REISS lost her boom April 13, 1994 when it collapsed at Fairport, OH.

The GEORGE M. HUMPHREY (2) struck a shoal in Whitefish Bay, near Gros Cap, April 13, 1956, when forced off channel in a shifting ice pack, and nearly sank.

On 13 April 1872, the wooden schooner-barge JOSEPH PAIGE was launched at the Wolf & Davidson yard in Milwaukee. Her dimensions were 190' x 32' x 12', 626 gt.

The passenger/package freight vessel OCEAN was launched at Andrews & Sons shipyard in Port Dalhousie, Ontario on 13 April 1872. She was placed in service on 27 April 1872, loading iron at Kingston for Chicago.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Straits of Mackinac Sinks

The stripped-down Straits of Mackinac was sunk Thursday in the chilly, green waters of Lake Michigan to create a new underwater destination for divers and an artificial reef for fish.

Riddled with holes and loaded with seven truckloads of concrete, the 1928 steamship that once linked Michigan's Upper and Lower peninsulas stubbornly hovered above the surface for more than an hour before finally plunging with a flourish 80 feet to the bottom. Twenty-foot geysers spurted up, wood splintered off and the ship gurgled helplessly for five minutes after it vanished from sight.

"Oh, that is awesome," Eileen Campagne, coordinator for the Mackinac Project, said with a gasp as she watched intently from a nearby pleasure boat. "We couldn't have asked for a more perfect planned sinking."

With its demise, the 200-foot-long Mackinac became the 23rd dive site in the Chicago area and one of the largest complete structures deliberately submerged in Lake Michigan, dive officials said.

Though project organizers said it is primarily intended to lure divers to the Chicago area and help boost tourism, they hope it will also provide habitat for organisms and help researchers monitor invasive species, such as the zebra mussel and the round goby.

For the last year, volunteers have been preparing the boat for its watery journey to its final resting place, a labor-intensive process that required scraping it clean of paint, removing asbestos, oil and gas, moving it to its temporary home along the banks of the Calumet River, and obtaining numerous city, state and federal permits.

The site, about 10 miles northeast of Navy Pier, was chosen because it was the only one that met the various regulatory requirements. It is not in a major shipping lane, it is at least five miles from a water intake crib, and it is deep enough that the smokestack is sufficiently submerged.

Reported by: David Foss

Michipicoten Enters Dry Dock

On Friday the former Elton Hoyt 2nd entered Fraser Shipyards' dry dock in Superior, Wi.

Friday morning two G tugs pulled the Michipicoten from alongside former fleet mate, the John Sherwin and put it in the dry dock at Fraser.

The vessel was acquired by Lower Lakes Towing on Thursday after the vessel spent a long career with the Interlake Steamship Company.

Dry docking is expected to last about two weeks, the vessel will then sail down bound and crews will complete her Canadian reflagging at Sarnia.

An altered picture of the Elton Hoyt 2nd showing how the Michipicoten will likely appear sailing for Lower Lakes Towing. Richard Jenkins

Reported by: Eric Bonow and Richard Jenkins

Middletown Returns

The G-Tugs Missouri and Florida spent most of Friday assisting the Middletown back down bound to the Carbide Dock after the Middletown began experiencing more engine trouble Thursday evening after locking upbound.

The tugs guided the Middletown into place at the Carbide Dock Friday evening in strong wind. It is unknown how long the Middletown will remain at Carbide undergoing repairs.

Friday morning about 7 a.m. the visiting U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay locked upbound heading to Duluth to assist the Sundew. Other traffic on Friday included: Paul R Tregurtha St. Clair, Edgar B Speer, Stewart J Cort. Downbound: George A Stinson, John J Boland, Armco, and Spruceglen.

Pictures by Scott Best
Middletown towed to the dock.
Another view.
Bow is pulled in.
Approaching the dock.
Tugs hold her to the dock.

Reported by: Scott Best and Linda Stoetzer

Six icebreakers continue work on Upper Lakes

 Six icebreakers will be working on Whitefish Bay, the St. Marys river and Straits of Mackinac in the coming days.

The last region of the Lakes with significant ice cover, Lake Superior, the river and Straits continue to present a challenge to commercial shipping, according to a USCG Group Sault spokesman.

Friday; the icebreaker Mackinaw worked the West Neebish Channel while on its way to a refueling and provisioning stop. Neah Bay and Morro Bay are working the upper St. Marys River. Biscayne Bay is working the Straits of Mackinac, Katmai Bay is bound for the lower St. Marys and the Canadian icebreaker Griffon is due in the North Channel and lower river on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Canadian icebreaker Samuel Risley is at Thunder Bay for a crew change, according to reports. With heavy ice still locking access to Marquette Harbor and the Duluth entrance to Duluth-Superior Harbor, it is uncertain where Risley will be sent once underway from her home port.

Off Duluth, the USCG Cutter Sundew on Friday was again working the ice of the Duluth ship canal. The width of the ice field has shrunk in the past few days thanks to southerly winds, but the field remains compact enough to prevent ships from using the ship canal. The Sundew was backing and ramming all Friday morning as it battered its way to about a mile off the end of the canal.

Reported by: Bonnie Barnes

Marquette Update

The Charles M. Beeghly brought a load of coal to Marquette's Presque Isle power plant Friday. The Beeghly will be taking on ore once she finishes unloading the coal.

The Reserve came in later for a load of ore. The Kaye Barker will be in on Saturday, the H. Lee White will bring a load of stone to the Shiras Steam Plant dock in the lower harbor on Sunday, and then transfer to the ore dock for a load on Monday.

Other ships in the tentative line-up are a return of the Beeghly, the Mississagi, the Lee A. Tregurtha, and the Great Lakes Trader.

Beeghly unloading.
Another view.
Reserve loading.
Bow view.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Friday in Clarkson

Friday afternoon brought a fitting close to a busy week in Clarkson.

Algocen finished loading cargo at St. Lawrence Cement. She sailed onto Lake Ontario just after 2 p.m. E.D.T. On the other side of the dock, James Norris was unloading her second cargo of limestone for the week. She arrived at about 12:30 p.m.

At the Petro Canada refinery dock, Melissa Desgagnes finished her discharge. She sailed out at 4 p.m.; in ballast and heading East. Emerald Star is still in the early stages of unloading. She will likely be here well into Saturday. Both of these vessels have been here since Wednesday.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Today in Great Lakes History - April 12

NANCY ORR GAUCHER was launched April 12, 1967 as the a) LANA.

Fuel Tanker LAKESHELL (3) was launched April 12, 1969.

The A.A AUGUSTUS departed Cleveland on her maiden voyage April 12, 1910 bound for Green Bay, WI with a load of coal.

HUDSON TRANSPORT was launched April 12, 1962.

On April 12, 1955 while upbound from Monroe, MI to load iron ore at Duluth, the ENDERS M. VOORHEES had the honor of opening the second century of navigation through the St. Marys Falls Ship Canal that was celebrated with great pomp and ceremony.

On 12 April 1880, the wooden 2-mast schooner-barge JUPITER was launched at Marysville, MI after being rebuilt under the supervision of James Bowers. She was originally built in 1857 at Irving, NY and after this rebuild, she lasted another 21 years.

On 12 April 1892, UGANDA (wooden propeller, 291', 2053 gt) was launched at W. bay City, Michigan at F. W. Wheeler's yard (hull #88).

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Hoyt Sold

Lower Lakes Towing is proud to announce that it is continuing to grow with the acquisition of the Elton Hoyt 2nd in a transaction which closed Thursday. The vessel will be brought into Canadian flag and will be renamed the Michipicoten.

Ships in the Lower Lakes Towing fleet all carry names honoring rivers, on or near where the vessels trade. She will join the Cuyahoga, Saginaw, and Mississagi in servicing the growing list of Lower Lakes Towing customers.

The Michipicoten is expected to enter the dry dock at Fraser Shipyards in Superior today. Dry docking is expected to last about two weeks, the vessel will then sail downbound and crews will complete her Canadian reflagging at Sarnia.

Reported by: Lower Lakes Towing

Old ferry heads for Lake Michigan grave

The former car ferry Straits of Mackinac was expected to be sunk Thursday in Lake Michigan about 10 miles off Chicago's Navy Pier to become an underwater destination for divers.

The Straits of Mackinac, built in 1928 to carry vehicles and passengers between Mackinaw City and St. Ignace, Mich., left its mooring on the Calumet River early Thursday and was being towed to its sinking point.

Members of the Mackinac Project, a group of Chicago-area divers, raised $95,000 to acquire and fit out the ship so it could be scuttled. Volunteers prepared the ship for sinking, cutting holes in its deck to give divers safe access. Asbestos and interior fittings were removed and the ship was loaded with 90 cubic yards of concrete for ballast.

The Straits of Mackinac ferried cars across the Straits of Mackinac from 1928 until the Mackinac Bridge opened in 1957.

Pictures by Bill Hoey
Straits of Mackinac at Kewaunee July 26, 2001.
Straits of Mackinac in service at Mackinac Island in 1961.
Interior view.

Reported by: Greg Gilbert

First Oceangoing Vessel Arrival

The Port of Duluth-Superior's 2003 St. Lawrence Seaway/Great Lakes navigation season is scheduled to officially open at approximately noon Friday (April 11) with the arrival of the Norwegian-flagged Menominee.

The Menominee is carrying about 1,800 metric tons of German lumber for discharge at Innovative Pine Technologies/Lake States Lumber’s newly completed lumber remanufacturing and distribution facility located at Duluth’s Clure Public Marine Terminal. Terminal operator Lake Superior Warehousing Co., Inc., will offload the lumber at its Berth No. 4. The Menominee is then scheduled to travel light to Three Rivers, Quebec, to load lumber destined for Northern Europe.

Lakes States entered a long-term lease agreement with the Port Authority in 2002 for a nine-plus acre waterfront parcel for construction of the facility and for land to be used for outdoor storage and material staging for the lumber, which Lake States distributes to numerous Upper Midwest outlets.

A general cargo vessel built in 1967 at Lindholmens Varv Shipyard, Goteborg, Sweden, the Menominee is commanded by Captain Kai Oestensvik. Great Lakes-European Shipping, Bergen, owns the vessel, and the local agent is Guthrie-Hubner, Inc.

The Menominee, one of two vessels that delivered Duluth-Superior's first European lumber imports in late 2001, also marked last year’s first oceangoing vessel arrival with an April 2 visit to the Clure Terminal with lumber.

U.S. and Canadian Seaway officials delayed the 2003 opening of the Welland Canal and Montreal-Lake Ontario sections of the system from March 25 until March 31 due to harsh ice conditions in several Great Lakes locations. The Menominee, which entered the Seaway system April 5, discharged about 3,500 metric tons of lumber in Toledo, Ohio, before traveling to Duluth.

The Port's earliest oceangoing vessel arrival since the 1959 opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway was April 1, 1995, with the arrival of the Indian vessel LT Argosy.

Great Lakes ships were on the move in the Twin Ports by March 23 this year with the departure of three Great Lakes Fleet vessels—the Edgar B. Speer, Roger Blough and Edwin H. Gott—each of which had wintered here and were traveling to Two Harbors to load iron ore pellets destined for Gary, Ind. The Fleet’s Presque Isle departed March 24, also for Two Harbors to load iron ore for the same destination. The four vessels were the first downbound passages through the locks at Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., which opened to vessel traffic March 25.

Canada Steamship Lines’ Frontenac opened the Port’s 2003 Great Lakes commercial navigation season on March 29 as the first inbound ship from the Soo Locks. The Frontenac fueled at Murphy Oil USA, Inc.’s, Duluth Marine Terminal, shifted to Duluth’s Hallett Dock No. 5 to discharge about 3,500 metric tons of salt, shifted again to Duluth’s C. Reiss Terminal to unload an additional 15,500 tons of salt, and then traveled to Superior’s Burlington Northern Santa Fe taconite facility for about 24,390 metric tons of iron ore pellets for Hamilton, Ont.

Reported by: Lisa Marciniak, Duluth Seaway Port Authority

Transfer Enters Dry Dock

Thursday the Canadian Transfer was in Pascol Engineering's dry dock in Thunder Bay. The stay in the dry dock is expected to be brief, the crack was not expected to delay her normal spring fit out.

In March the Canadian Transfer developed a crack on her deck running from side to side in front of the after winches. There was no work going on at the time the crack formed. The ship had recently been removed from the drydock and her fitout crew was not yet aboard.

It is believed that the extremely cold temperatures combined with the usual stressing of the vessel in a pumped out condition was the primary cause.

Reported by: Rob Farrow

Westcott II Returns to Service

The U.S. mail boat J.W. Westcott II returned to service Thursday morning. Capt. Sam Buchanan backed the 50-foot work boat from the dock at Gregory's Marina onto the Detroit River. The back up mail boat Joseph J. Hogan was towed by the Westcott II and took up her place at the Westcott Company Dock on the Detroit River.

This is the J.W. Westcott Company's 108th season on the river. Winter work on the Westcott fleet included a new rudder on the Westcott and the Hogan's hull color was changed from red to black.

The first vessel serviced by the mail boat for the 2003 season was the downbound Algowood.

Westcott II at its Detroit dock.
Joseph J. Hogan now in black.
The opening included the fly by of a U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Detroit helicopter.
Close up of Helo 6506, the Coast Guard conducts regular boarder patrols along the river.
Westcott crew ready for their first delivery. Capt. Sam Buchanan (right) and deck hand Dave Tozer
Algowood arrives downbound.
Westcott II pulls along side.
"Mail by the Pail".
Dave Tozer catches the mail bucket.
The mail bag is tied to the line along with a floral arrangement. The arrangement included a balloon marked "We Missed You" courtesy "The Flower Lady" of Chris Engel's Greenhouse in Detroit.
Algowood is downbound riding high in the water.
Exchanging salutes.
The Westcott II returns to her dock.
Canadian Navigator arrives as the first upbound vessel.
Bow look out.
Mail goes aboard.
Stern view.
Heading upbound.
Quick stop to retrieve a stray bottle of Mountain Dew lost over board.
Back at the station we find Office Manager Paul Jagenow busy at work.
Next vessel is the downbound Kaye E. Barker, loaded for the Rouge.
Mail is exchanged.
Close up of her name.
Stern view.
As the sun sets we load up with freight for the H. Lee White and mail for the Algolake.
Algolake downbound.
Along side.
Mail is taken aboard.
Capt. Anders Rasmussen waves from the pilothouse and sends his greetings.
Toronto Maple Leafs flag waves at the bow.
A short distance down river the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bristol Bay and her barge pass upbound.
Turning into the Rouge River we find the H. Lee White unloading at the Rouge Short Cut Coal dock.
Lots of freight to go aboard.
Heading for the engine room gangway door.
Engineer Dean Parks asked if we were Boatnerd Reporters. He sends a message for his wife Jessica, "I love you and I'll be home in about 100 days."

Reported by: N. Schultheiss

Jiimaan Arrives

The car ferry Jiimaan arrive at Port Weller Dry Docks Thursday afternoon and tied up at the ship yard.

Jiimaan is reported to be scheduled for her five year dry docking inspection before entering service.

The ferry provides service between Leamington Ontario and Pelee Island in Lake Erie.

Pictures by Alex Howard
Jiimaan heading for Port Weller Dry Docks.
Close up.
Stern view.
Quebecois upbound Thursday.
Close up.
Stern view.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt, B. Pyke and Alex Howard

Middletown Stops in the Soo

Thursday evening the Middletown arrived at the Carbide Dock to under go what is reported to be engine repairs. The Middletown is on its first trip of the season, headed to Silver Bay to load ore for Cleveland.

Also upbound on its first trip of the season Thursday evening is the Reserve.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw was tied up at the Coast Guard base Thursday evening along with the Morro Bay. The Neah Bay is working the ice in Whitefish Bay, while the Katmai Bay spent Thursday working ice in the lower river.

Approaching Carbide Dock.
Another view.
working the stern to the dock.

Reported by: Scott Best

Steelworkers endorse U.S. Steel bid for National

U.S. Steel Corp. reached a tentative labor contract Wednesday with the United Steelworkers of America, making the Pittsburgh-based steelmaker the likely winner in the bidding to buy bankrupt National Steel Corp., the Detroit Free Press reported.

As part of the deal to be submitted this week to U.S. Bankruptcy Court, U.S. Steel would be allowed to cut up to 5,700 jobs, or 20 percent, of the workforce of the combined companies. Local union leaders told the newspaper that cuts should be minimal among its 2,600 members at National plants in Michigan.

National's assets in Michigan include plants in Ecorse and River Rouge, the ProCoil Processing Center in Canton and the technical research center in Trenton.

AK Steel had bid $1.125 billion in February to purchase National's assets, which trumped U.S. Steel's bid of $950 million. But John Armstrong, U.S. Steel's spokesman, said the Pittsburgh-based company would submit a new bid, although he would not confirm the amount.

National sought bankruptcy protection in March 2002, citing low steel prices and a weak economy. Japan's NKK Corp., which bought half of National Steel in 1984, remains the company's majority owner.

Reported by: Frank Frisk

Algoway Departs

The Algoway departed her winter lay-up berth at 6:15 p.m. Thursday evening. A Coast Guard ice breaker was waiting for Algoway out in the bay.

Algoway departs.
Close up, powering through the ice.

Reported by: Ed Saliwonchyk

Mackinaw battles ice at the Soo

Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw took its power into the St. Marys River on Tuesday as it continued battling the ice that's slowing ship traffic.

The icebreaker pursued many tasks, starting the day by flushing an ice jam in the lower Rock Cut and then "grooming" the lower river down to Pipe Island.

Mackinaw then escorted the downbound Paul R. Tregurtha through West Neebish Channel and escorted the upbound James R. Barker through Middle Neebish Channel. The Mackinaw reported the Barker had trouble making the turns at Winter Point and Johnson Point.

The Mackinaw reported a "vast amount of ice" came down West Neebish Channel following the transit of the tug Reliance. Thick brash ice is located at the bottom of the Rock Cut and at most turns in the Middle Neebish Channel. Vessels transiting both channels likely will need icebreaker assistance.

The Mackinaw also had to spend some time at the Carbide Dock at the Soo to inspect its steering gear and make minor repairs to its rudder post after crew members noticed an unusual noise and sluggish response.

Onboard the Joseph L. Block Thursday, Lime Island can be seen on the left in the lower St. Marys River.
Passing the Reserve.
Stern view.

Reported by: Eric Treece

Anderson Opens Stone Port

The Arthur M Anderson arrived at the Stoneport dock around 7:30 p.m. on Thursday. It went back and forth a few times to make a path and clear away some of the ice that remained in the dock area. It was loading stone for Huron, OH.

The Phillip R. Clarke, John G. Munson and H. Lee White are also expected in to load at Stoneport on Friday.

Passing the Lake Huron port Thursday was the Earl W. Oglebay, she is likely headed for Calcite.

Anderson arriving at dock.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Twin Ports Report

Coast Guard Cutter Sundew spent Thursday trying to break up the stubborn the ice field off the Duluth ship canal. At 7 a.m., the cutter was working in the partial track cut Saturday by the Canadian cutter Samuel Risley. With part of the ice field having drifted away, the Sundew had managed to get within two miles of the ship canal -- about as far as the Risley had gotten before being stopped by a pressure ridge.

Despite the ice, Twin Ports ship traffic continued as vessels took advantage of the track through the Superior entry. James R. Barker was loading at BNSF ore dock and Saginaw was loading at the DMIR ore dock. Spruceglen was loading grain at the Cenex Harvest States elevator in Superior.

Norwegian-flag lumber carrier Menominee is expected to be the Twin Ports first saltie this season. It's due at the port terminal on Friday.

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette Update

The John J. Boland was expected late on Thursday. Friday will see the Charles Beeghly with a load of coal, then taking on a load of ore, and the Reserve in for a load of ore. South winds have opened up the harbor.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Jackson in Milwaukee

The Herbert C. Jackson arrived in Milwaukee Thursday with the first coal load of the year. As the Jackson finished unloading the tug Dorothy Ann and barge Pathfinder arrived. They backed down past the Jackson and took their place at the coal dock after the Jackson departed.

Jackson unloading.
Pathfinder backing into the inner harbor.
Jackson departing the coal dock, Pathfinder waits.
Heading for the lake.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Integrity Delivers

The tug Jacklyn M. and barge Integrity were in St. Joseph on Thursday. The pair arrived some time early Thursday morning and was still unloading at 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon.

Reported by: Matt Cook

Cleveland News

The Columbia Star arrived in port Thursday evening to unload at the Cleveland Bulk Terminal. Fleet mate Fred R. White Jr. continues on the ISG shuttle.

The Helena Oldendorff remains at the Port of Cleveland dock, having offloaded steel.

The Cuyahoga was busy offloading stone down river, now that the American Republic and Earl Oglebay have left lay-up at that site.

Reported by: Bill Kloss, Rex Cassidy and Tim & Karen Zehe

Toronto Update

Stephen B. Roman was back in port Thursday morning. Federal Yoshino continued unloading at Redpath.

The winter tarps were removed from the ferry Thomas Rennie Thursday in preparation for it entering service next week, when the ferry Ongiara comes off Toronto Drydock. At that time, the ferry William Inglis, which is currently running, will be taken out of service for some additional spring maintenance.

The charter vessel Jubillee Queen shifted to its summer berth early Thursday.

The venerable Royal Canadian Yacht Club tender Kwasind made its first appearance of the season on the harbor Wednesday morning. Also out Wednesday for a harbour tour was Mariposa Cruise Line's Oriole, on its second trip of the season.

The Water Works tug Ned Hanlan is back in service transporting workers from the city to the island filtration plant. The water taxi Bryan A has returned to service as well.

The schooner Kajama began bending sails Wednesday morning in preparation for the season. One of McNally Const. Co.'s spud barges had departed from Pier 35.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Clarkson Update

Thursday's warm air temperatures combined with cooler air over Lake Ontario to create a thick fog over the waterfront for most of the day.

By early evening the fog cleared to reveal that the piers at St. Lawrence Cement and at the Petro Canada Refinery remained busy. At St. Lawrence Cement, Algocen continued loading the forward holds and will likely clear late tonight or early Friday.

Algosteel and James Norris which both brought in limestone on Wednesday had departed.

At Petro Canada, Melissa Desgagnes was alongside discharging cargo. Out on the lake, the loaded Emerald Star lay at anchor, deck lights aglow, awaiting her turn at the dock.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Duluth Breakout

All photos taken on April 5, 2003 during the break-out of Duluth / Superior.

Paul R and Canadian Progress waiting in the ice outside Duluth.
Wash day on the Risley.
A good view of the ice field outside Superior.
How the ice rides onto the Risley’s after deck.
A high up view of track making and the entrance to Superior.
Another view of the attempts to back through the ice.
A pretty photo of the ice edge.
Superior light, and some guy on the ice.
A high up view looking out of Superior.
A gathering of Boatnerds, whose photos showed up on the news page the next morning!
More boatnerds. I was lucky and could duck inside to warm up. These people were very hardy indeed.
A better view of Superior light.
USCGC Sundew clears Superior Harbor.
USCGC Sundew in heavy ice.
Lake Michigan whale breeding ground discovered – in western Lake Superior!

Tomorrow, more photos from the breakout of Superior and Duluth. These will include the first two ships out and the first two in, as well as more of the Sundew in ice.

Reported by: Paul Beesley

Today in Great Lakes History - April 11

IMPERIAL ST. CLAIR entered service on April 11, 1974 light for Montreal, Que.

The J.W. McGIFFIN was christened at Collingwood on April 11, 1972.

The PHILIP D. BLOCK sailed on her maiden voyage April 11, 1925 with coal from Huron, OH bound for delivery at Indiana Harbor, IN.

The A.E. NETTLETON was launched April 11, 1908.

On April 11, 1970 in Lake Superior’s Whitefish Bay the STADACONA (3) encountered thick ice and suffered bow damage. She developed a hairline crack in her bow and to alleviate the leakage her cargo was shifted from her forward hold to her after compartments with her self-unloading equipment. This maneuver raised her bow enough to keep her from sinking before she reached safety.

ENDERS M. VOORHEES was launched April 11, 1942 .

On April 11, 1964 while upbound on Whitefish Bay, Lake Superior, a boiler burst on board the WILLIAM A. IRVIN killing one of the crew and injuring two others.

April 11, 1948 - The ANN ARBOR NO. 7 ran aground just south of Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.

On 11 April 1874, the new tug E.H. MILLER burned at her dock at Willow Island in the Saginaw River. Her loss was valued at $9,000 and there was no insurance. Although considered to be a total loss, she was rebuilt and lasted another 46 years.

On 11 April 1878, ALASKA, a wooden bulk freighter, was launched at J. P. Clark's yard in Detroit. Her dimensions were 180' overall, 28' beam, and 10' depth.

The navigation season at the Canadian Sault Canal was unofficially opened at 7:15 AM, 11 April 1955, when the MANZZUTTI (steel crane ship, 246', 1558 gc, built in 1903 at Buffalo, NY as J. S. KEEFE) locked up bound for the Algoma Steel dock. Because the MANZZUTTI wintered over at the Soo, its Captain, John B. Perry, was not eligible for the traditional top hat and silk gloves presented to the first captain through the locks. So this was not the official opening of navigation at the Soo. The first boat through the American locks was expected the following day.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Hoyt Sold

Lower Lakes Towing is proud to announce that it is continuing to grow with the acquisition of the Elton Hoyt 2nd in a transaction which closed today. The vessel will be brought into Canadian flag and will be renamed the Michipicoten.

She will join the Cuyahoga, Saginaw, and Mississagi in servicing the growing list of Lower Lakes Towing customers.

Reported by: Lower Lakes Towing

Ice Jam Eases

The ice jam off the Twin Ports showed signs of easing Wednesday, aided by southerly winds and continued work by the Coast Guard Cutter Sundew.

Winds from the south at 10 to 20 mph were made to order for breaking up the ice jam that's plagued the Twin Ports since last Thursday. The Sundew was working the edge of the ice field off Duluth during the afternoon, and several large rafts of ice had broken free from the jam and were starting to drift away. By early evening some of the rafts were nearly a mile away, and a large lead of open water appeared to be opening in the middle of the ice field.

Today's weather could continue to help. The forecast calls for winds again from the south, with plenty of sun and temperatures near 60.

With the pressure easing on the ice, traffic continued through a stable track running through Superior entry. The George A. Stinson left its layup berth at Elevator M, loaded at BNSF ore dock and was expected to depart. Armco reportedly will get under way today and proceed to Silver Bay to load.

Reported by: Al Miller

Morro Bay Reaches the Soo

The U.S. Coast Guard cutter Morro Bay arrived in the Soo harbor late Wednesday morning and docked at the Coast Guard Base.

The Mackinaw locked upbound to Whitefish Bay while the Katmai Bay was in the lower river on an ice patrol.

Reported by: Scott Best

Busy Opening Day at Clarkson, Ont.

Wednesday afternoon five vessels were on Lake Ontario in view of the Petro Canada and St. Lawrence Cement piers.

At St. Lawrence Cement, the Algosteel was loading cargo on the west side of the pier. On the east side, the Algocen was about a third of the way through discharging the first load of stone for the season. Meanwhile, the fully loaded James Norris arrived from the East on her first trip of the season.

The Norris is most likely bringing in limestone from Colborne, Ontario. She set her anchors about a mile out, awaiting her turn for a place at the pier to unload.

Further out, were two tankers awaiting clearance into Petro Canada. The Melissa Desgagnes was clearly identifiable; the other tanker appeared to be either the Emerald Star or the Spar Jade.

This is the most active day in the port in recent memory, the 2003 season is well underway.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley

Jiimaan Heading for Port Colborne

The car ferry Jiimaan is expected to arrive in Port Colborne Thursday morning. She is headed for Port Weller Dry Docks. It is unknown what type of work will be performed on the carferry.

Last summer the Jiimaan suffered a mechanical failure on one of her engines. The ferry provides service between Leamington Ontario and Pelee Island in Lake Erie.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt

Algoway Prepares to Depart

The Algoway was preparing to depart her winter lay-up berth on Wednesday in Owen Sound. The heavy duty shore power line had been removed and her engines were running.

She was expected to depart Wednesday evening ands sail upbound for Meldrum Bay to load for Sarnia.

Pictures by Ed Saliwonchyk
Crane along side the Algoway Wednesday.
Repaired section of hull.

Reported by: Ed Saliwonchyk and D. Shearman

Alpena Loads

The steamer Alpena arrived at the Lafarge dock around 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday to load cement. It was expected to leave by 2 a.m., heading for Whitefish, ON. This will be its first visit to that port this season, adding to the list of deliveries made by the Alpena which was the first vessel out of lay-up this year.

The J.A.W Iglehart is still at the Lafarge coal dock getting repairs and may sail by Friday.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Green Bay Season Expected to Open Sunday

The 2003 shipping season is expected to begin Sunday with the arrival of the John G. Munson. The Munson, who ended Green Bay's 2002 Season with a load of coal, is due to bring 20,000 tons of limestone to Great Lakes Calcium Sunday morning. Officials in Green Bay are expecting fewer ships with lighter loads this year due to the late start and very low water levels.

Reported by: Jason Leino

Bayfield Opener

The 2003 navigation season opened at Bayfield, WI Wednesday. The ferry Island Queen arrived at LaPointe, on Madeline Island at 5 p.m., after a nine hour icebreaking marathon to complete the approximately two and a half mile distance.

The smaller ferry, Nichevo II, joined in the effort for the last half mile.

Reported by: Harvey Hadland

Lower Detroit River Traffic

The American Republic was upbound in the Amherstburg Channel Wednesday morning on her first trip of the year. The barge Ocean Hauler pushed by a McKeil tug docked at General Chemical with a load of brine Wednesday. The Southdown Conquest was upbound that morning. The Middletown followed upbound later in the afternoon. The Canadian Coast Guard Ship Gull Isle departed the Amherstburg base and is likely working Aids to Navigation.

There has been no sign of ice in the river for the last several weeks.

American Republic off Amherstburg.
Close up.

Reported by: Dave Cozens

Toledo Traffic

Below are images of traffic in Toledo on Tuesday.

Menominee (Norway) at the Toledo TWT Dock.
Stern view.
Reserve and Middletown at the TWT Dock.
U.S.C.G.C. Hickory at the Lafarge Dock in Toledo.
Close up.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls

Today in Great Lakes History - April 10

TEXACO CHIEF (2) was christened April 10, 1969.

The GODERICH (1) was sold April 10, 1963 to the Algoma Central & Hudson Bay Railway Co. and renamed e) AGAWA (2).

The keel was laid April 10, 1952 for the WILLIAM CLAY FORD (1)

The SINCLAIR GREAT LAKES was christened on April 10, 1963

On April 10, 1973 the ARTHUR B. HOMER departed the shipyard with a new pilothouse. She had suffered extensive damage the previous fall in a head on collision on the Detroit River.

April 10, 1912 - ANN ARBOR No. 5 struck her stern against the channel in Manitowoc, bending her rudder, and damaging her port shaft.

On 10 April 1875, the propeller EMMA E. THOMPSON was launched at East Saginaw. She was built for Capt. D.F. Edwards of Toledo and cost $20,000. Her dimensions were 125' x 26' x 10'. In 1880, she was rebuilt as a schooner and then returned to a propeller in 1881 when she was given the engine from the propeller AKRON.

On 10 April 1882, ESPINDOLA (wooden schooner, 54 tons, built in 1869 at Manitowoc, WI) was carrying railroad ties when she was overwhelmed by a storm and went to pieces one mile north of the Chicago waterfront. No lives were lost, but four crewmen were rescued by a tug after having been in the water for some time.

The MANZZUTTI (steel crane ship, 246', 1558 gc, built in 1903 at Buffalo, NY as J. S. KEEFE) of the Yankcanuck Steamship Ltd. was the first vessel through the Canadian locks at the Soo for the 1954 navigation season. She entered the Canadian canal about 8:15 AM on 10 April 1954. The locking of the MANZZUTTI was not considered the official opening of the season at the Soo since she wintered in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario and the first vessel must come up the St. Mary’s River from Lake Huron or Michigan. President Dave Bows of the Kiwanis Club, pointed out the club’s $1,000 marine contest is based on the first such vessel though the Michigan Sault locks only. The U.S. Coast Guard reported six inch ice in the lower St. Mary's River.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Speer Refloated

The 1000-footer Edgar B. Speer was pulled free from Graham Shoal, just east of the Mackinac Bridge, on Tuesday morning.

The Purvis tug Reliance arrived on scene about 9 a.m. and began working to pull the Speer free. The big tug was able to free the grounded footer about 10:30 a.m. and the Speer went to anchor near Round Island for inspections.

On Monday afternoon the Speer became stuck in ice and was pushed aground by ice and high winds.

The crew reported a soft landing on the shoal and did not know the ship was aground until they could no longer maneuver. The Soo Evening News reported that the crew heard none of the usual sounds of grounding on the mixed sand and gravel shoal. It is hopeful that the damage will be minimal due to the bottom materials and slow speed at which she grounded.

Reported by: Terry Foley and Linda Stoetzer

Sykes Departs

The Wilfred Sykes departed its winter berth at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay, WI on Tuesday afternoon. She headed to Lake Michigan via the ship canal. Most of the water is open on that end of the bay, however the wind had blown some pack ice into the channel at the south end of the bay just before it narrows into the canal.

The ice slowed the Sykes but was not significant enough to stop her. She passed into Lake Michigan with out problems.

The Selvick Marine tug Susan L was on hand to assist with departure.

Vessels remaining at Bay Ship are the John J. Boland, Sam Laud, St Clair, Lee A. Tregurtha and the tug Rebecca Lynn and barge.

Through the bridge.
Approaching the ship canal in the ice .
Susan L.
Following the Sykes.

Reported by: Carl Grota

Chios Pride Opens Marinette

The Port of Marinette was officially opened with the arrival of the Chios Pride on Tuesday afternoon. The tug, Erika Kobasic, led the way into the Menominee River acting as an icebreaker for the saltie. The Kobasic then turned around in the Menominee River harbor and headed back to Escanaba, leaving the Selvick tugs, Jimmy L and Jacqueline Nicole, to bring the ship into port. The Chios Pride is carrying a load of Brazilian pig iron to Marinette Fuel & Dock Co., and was docked alongside the crane ship, William H. Donner.

Earlier this week, on Sunday morning, the two Selvick tugs entered the Menominee River and proceeded to the K&K Warehouse Dock. There, they attached their lines to the Donner and towed it back to her berth at Marinette Fuel and Dock Co. It had been brought to K&K for winter maintenance and repairs last December. The Menominee North Pier Lighthouse showed the signs of a storm with high winds last week, with ice piled over the pier.

Ice piled up on Sunday after two day storm last week.
Close-up of an ice shove.
A view from the lighthouse back toward shore on Tuesday.
The Jimmy L and Jacqueline Nicole nudge the William H. Donner into its berth at Marinette Fuel & Dock.
Erika Kobasic leads the way through the ice for the Chios Pride.
Close-up of the Chios Pride in the ice.
Erika Kobasic breaks free of the ice with a bone in her teeth.
Erika Kobasic heads back to the Chios Pride.
Jimmy L heads out to assist the Chios Pride.
The Jacqueline Nicole waits in the ice to assist the Chios Pride.
The Erika Kobasic heads back to Escanaba while the Selvick tugs get ready to assist the Chios Pride into the Menominee River.
A group of boatwatchers look on as the tow heads for the lighthouse.
Chios Pride in the river with the Jimmy L and Jacqueline Nicole helping.
Chios Pride being nudged alongside the crane ship William H. Donner.

Reported by: Dick Lund

Morro Bay Upbound

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay was upbound in the Detroit and St Clair Rivers Tuesday.

The 140-foot Bay-class cutter is heading for the upper lakes and will continue on to the Straights of Mackinac or Whitefish Bay to assist with ice breaking.

The Morro Bay passed the Black River in Port Huron about 4 p.m.

Reported by: Larry Leverenz III

Iglehart Under Repair

The J.A.W Iglehart has been in Alpena since Sunday, docked at the Lafarge Coal Dock for repairs. Crews have been working on the lower starboard side making repairs where it was damaged by heavy ice on its last trip through the Straits of Mackinac.

Crews hope to have the repairs complete and leave port in the next few days.

The Alpena is expected back in port early Thursday morning. It went to Muskegon to load the barge Integrity and tug Jacklyn M.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain

Yankcanuck Arrives

The Yankcanuck arrived at the old McLouth Steel dock in Trenton Tuesday evening. She is loaded with a cargo of rolled coil steel. This is the Yankcanuck's second trip of the season.

Yankanuck left before dawn up bound in the Trenton Channel after unloading her load of rolled coil steel.

Reported by: Bob Burns

Calumet Departs

The Calumet departed her lay-up dock in Sarnia Tuesday evening, sailing downbound.

The Mississagi and Maumee still have the covers over the windows, however, the Maumee does have main boiler steam up. The Agawa Canyon is still showing little sign of returning to service and still has the gang plank welded to the side.

Reported by: Jamie Kerwin and Barry Hiscocks

Marquette Update

The Kaye Barker took over the Joseph H. Thompson's slot Monday night and began unloading coal. She will take on a load of ore when she finishes. The Canadian Coast Guard Ship Samuel Risley departed with the Saginaw and Joe Thompson.

The barge Great Lakes Trader and tug Joyce L. VanEnkevort came into Marquette with out escort and will take on a load of ore Wednesday.

The next ship due in is the John J. Boland on Thursday, although the Saginaw could make a return trip.

Also expected into Marquette are the Reserve and Charles M. Beeghly on the Friday. The H. Lee White is due at the Shiras power plant on the Saturday and then will shift to the upper harbor for a load of ore on Sunday. The Lee A. Tregurtha and a return of the Beeghly are also tentatively scheduled.

Work was continuing on the dock trestle Tuesday as the shipping season gets underway.

Pictures by Lee Rowe
Great Lakes Trader docked.
Freezing spray coated the bow with ice.
Kaye E. Barker unloading coal.
Working on the trestle.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Art Pickering

New Loading Dock In Manistee

With the recent purchase of Martin Marietta by Dow chemical of Ludington, Mi a new dock has been created in Manistee, Mi. Sunday evening found the Hannah Marine barge Hannah 2901 loading calcium chloride at Martin Marietta.

Luedtke Marine has created a dock by mooring what appears to be 2 barges loaded with scrap against the shore by the factory. Martin Marietta is just southeast of General Chemical, where McKeil ships brine on the Capt. Ralph Tucker and two barges.

The loading operation at Martin Marietta will be temporary as a new pipeline is being connected from Manistee to Ludington. This pipeline will ship calcium chloride, while General Chemical will continue to ship brine.

Hannah Marine was the first company to ship liquid calcium chloride out of Manistee when the old Akzo Salt factory was converted to a calcium chloride plant and sold to Ambar Inc. No Hannah Marine tugboat was seen in Manistee, but when the barge is fully loaded it will head to Ludington to offload.

Reported by: Chris Franckowiak

Busy Day for Muskegon

Tuesday proved to be a busy day for Muskegon. The Alpena spent the better part of the day at the Mart dock transferring their cargo of cement to the barge Integrity. About 3 p.m. the Indiana Harbor arrived between the piers heads destined for the B.C. Cobb dock to off load coal. She arrived dockside around 5 p.m.

Both the Alpena and Integrity were outbound around 7 p.m. The Indiana Harbor is due to leave sometime during the night.

Reported by: Bill Bell

First Saltie for Cleveland

The Helena Oldendorff arrived in Cleveland on Sunday. The Helena is the first saltie to visit Cleveland for the 2003 season. She is loaded with steel.

Her trip to Cleveland was eventful when the vessel lost steering on April 2 and grounded at in Lake St. Francis, Quebec. The steering was quickly repaired and there was no apparent damage to the hull.

Reported by: Bill Kloss

Toronto Update

The saltie Regina Oldendorff was officially welcomed as the first foreign flagged visitor by the Port Authority in a ceremony on Monday, complete with TV crews and a lone reporter for the Toronto Sun. After the ceremony the Oldendorff was turned in the harbor with the assistance of McKeil's tugs Atomic and Progress, late in the day, to allow the unloading of her stern hatches.

Unloading was completed at Redpath Tuesday and she departed around 10 p.m.

Just before midnight the McKeil tugs were out again assisting Federal Yoshima into the Redpath Sugar dock. This was likely the saltie which has been anchored in Humber Bay since late Thursday.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Seaway News

After one week of navigation in the St. Lawrence Seaway, from March 31 to April 6, only eight foreign-flag ocean freighters have been logged.

So far the sister ships Regina Oldendorff and Helena Oldendorff, the Stolt Aspiration, Federal Oshima, Chios Pride, Menominee, Federal Yoshino and Utviken. All those vessels are regular callers to the Seaway.

The following ships are also listed and are expected in Great Lakes ports in less than a week: Goldeneye for Escanaba, an unusual port for a saltie, Isolda for Cleveland, Lady Hamilton for Oshawa, Vancouverborg for Menominee and Spar Opal for Hamilton. There will be others as well.

Spar Opal was the last saltie in the Seaway last year clearing the waterway on Christmas Day. The Lady Hamilton will be interesting to see, she is on charter to Fednav but as of October last year, her funnel markings had not been changed to the Fednav markings.

Reported by: René Beauchamp

Today in Great Lakes History - April 09

On April 9, 1960, the Murray Bay (1) (former Comeaudoc) entered service as the first Canadian 730-footer.

The LAWRENDOC (2) was christened jointly with her Collingwood-built sister ship MONDOC (3) on April 9, 1962.

The Wilson Marine Transit Co., Cleveland purchased the FINLAND on April 9, 1957 and resold her the same day to the Republic Steel Corp., Cleveland with Wilson Marine acting as manager.

April 9, 1930 - The CITY OF FLINT 32 entered service under the command of Estan Bayle.

On 9 April 1871, the wooden "rabbit" BAY CITY (152', 372 gt, built in 1867 at Marine City) had just loaded 270,00 feet of lumber in Bay City for Tonawanda, NY when a fire broke out ashore. The ship was set adrift at 11:00 a.m. to get away from the lumber yard blaze. However, as the crew watched the shore fire, sparks smoldered in the ship's cargo. At 2:00 p.m., she burst into flame. Four tugs and a steam-powered fire engine brought along side on a lighter fought the blaze to no avail. The vessel was scuttled to put out the fire. A few days later she was raised and repaired at a cost of $4,000.

On 9 April 1885, laid-up vessels BURLINGTON and CHURCH were hit by the barge ALLEN and forced into the Military Street bridge at Port Huron, Michigan, crashing into the structure and completely blocking the Black River and disabling the bridge. The blame was placed on the Spring thaw.

Data from: Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Speer Grounds in the Straights

04/08 11 a.m. update
The Purvis tug Reliance arrived on scene in the Straits at 9 a.m. Tuesday to attempt to free the Edgar B. Speer. The tug was able to free the grounded footer by about 1030 a.m. The Speer is now going to anchor near Round Island for inspections.

Original Report
Monday afternoon the Edgar B. Speer grounded on Graham Shoal, just east of the Mackinac Bridge. Monday evening the Speer remained aground off St. Ignace, Mi.

A crowd of onlookers witnessed several attempts by the Speer to free herself, unsuccessfully. It is unknown why the 1000-footer grounded and what role the heavy ice played.

The Sault Ste. Marie based tug Reliance departed her dock in Soo early Tuesday morning. She reported her destination as the Straits of Mackinac. The big tug is likely heading to assist the Speer.

The U.S. Coast Guard cutters Neah Bay and Biscayne Bay broke a path in the ice for the Arthur M. Anderson, Chios Pride and the Indiana Harbor to proceed past the Speer.

Earlier on Monday, heavy ice and wind gusts from the east apparently caused great difficulty for the downbound footer. While there is open water west of the bridge, hard fast ice remains to the east.

Reported by: Terry Foley, Scott Best and Dave Wobser

Saginaw and Thompson Reach Port

After being stuck in the ice outside the Marquette harbor for four days, the Saginaw was finally freed by the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Samuel Risley on Monday.

The Risley opened a path, freed the Saginaw, then went back to free the tug and barge Joseph H. Thompson/Jr. which had been working her way slowly toward Marquette along with the Saginaw.

The Kaye Barker followed the Risley to Marquette from Duluth, but also got stuck in the ice, and was the third ship to be freed from the ice and escorted to the harbor. She has a load of coal and has to wait for the Thompson to finish her load before she can approach the dock.

A crowd of boatwatchers gathered to see the slow parade of ships enter the harbor.

Pictures by Lee Rowe
Saginaw and Thompson stuck off Marquette.
Saginaw inbound.
Heading for the dock.
Joseph H. Thompson inbound.
Approaching the harbor.
Boatwatchers watch the action.
The Risley stopped at the dock.
Another view.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Art Pickering

Toledo Receives First Saltie

On Monday the 503-foot saltie Menominee was the first salt water vessel to arrive at Toledo for the 2003 season. The Great Lakes European Shipping Company vessel brought 3,500 metric tons of lumber from Norway.

The Toledo Port Authority is expecting more loads of imported lumber this season.

Reported by: Dave Wobser

Ice Continues to Cause Problems in the Twin Ports

Vessel traffic in the Twin Ports remained confined to Superior entry and the track through the densely packed ice field jamming the western tip of Lake Superior.

Paul R. Tregurtha departed through Superior entry with coal just about 4:30 a.m., followed a short time later by the Cason J. Callaway, which was bound for Two Harbors to load taconite pellets. Stewart J. Cort made it into port sometime Sunday or Sunday night and loaded at BNSF ore dock.

Elsewhere in western Lake Superior, Columbia Star was loading at Silver Bay, and Oglebay Norton was loading in Two Harbors, with Roger Blough and Edwin H. Gott arriving later.

Despite a brisk easterly breeze that sent swells angling into the ice field, vessels continued to transit the track during the afternoon. At midday, Stewart J. Cort was preparing to depart and apparently did so without trouble. Mesabi Miner arrived in port to fuel and then load at the DMIR ore dock. Spruceglen arrived at the Cenex Harvest States elevator to become the Twin Ports' first grain boat of the season. A vessel that appeared to be Algolake was proceeding through the ice field in late afternoon.

Reported by: Al Miller

April 1 Fleet Total Reflects Ice Delays

Only 19 U.S.-flag lakers were in service on April 1, 2003, a decrease of 15 hulls compared to a year ago. The heavy ice conditions forced a number of vessels to push back their sail dates. The April 1 total represents a decrease of 19 hulls compared to the 5-year average.

Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association

Whitefish Warrior battles its old foe

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw continued to battle the ice in Whitefish Bay on Sunday, assisting 11 vessels through the difficult conditions there.

The Mackinaw came to the aid of a convoy of upbound ships after the two most powerful vessels Roger Blough and Edwin H. Gott became beset.

With full power, the Mackinaw was able to make only 2 knots in the heavy ice. Nonetheless, the icebreaker was able to lead the convoy to open water. Along with the Blough and Gott, the upbound vessels included Burns Harbor, Mesabi Miner, Spruceglen, Columbia Star, Algolake, Halifax and Birchglen.

The Mackinaw also assisted Gordon Leitch and Edgar B. Speer in passing downbound through the ice.

Later in the day, the Mackinaw reestablished a track through the ice. Part of the track only allows one-way traffic.

The Mackinaw reported that Whitefish Bay down to Ile Parisienne remains covered with large floes of ice ranging from 2 to 6 feet thick. On Sunday the track was holding in light winds, but brash ice in the track was refreezing and becoming more difficult as the temperature fell.

Reported by: Philip Nash

Winter Puts The Big Chill On March Coal Trade

With some of the worst ice formations seen in years covering the Lakes, coal shipments in March totaled only 523,015 net tons, a decrease of 44.3 percent compared to a year ago and a drop of 49.1 percent compared to the 5-year average. Each of the seven coal loading ports registered decreases compared to the corresponding period last year. Superior Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior, Wisconsin, the largest coal-loading dock on the Great Lakes, did not load its first cargo until March 31, a delay of 12 days compared to the its original forecast. The Bessemer & Lake Erie dock in Conneaut, Ohio, did not load one single cargo in March. Nor did KCBX in South Chicago or Canadian National in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Year-to-date, the Lakes coal trade stands at 1.2 million tons, a decrease of 46.3 percent compared to the same point in 2002 and 39.2 percent compared to the 5-year average.

Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association

Lower Detroit River News

The Canadian Coast Guard Ship Griffon docked at the Amherstburg Coast Guard base late Friday evening. The "Gopher" was busy transporting buoys to the Griffon Saturday morning. The Griffon departed before noon with about five markers on her deck to be set in western Lake Erie. Many more buoys are lined up on the wharf awaiting their turn.

On Saturday the Ontario Provincial Police launched their two new patrol boats which were commissioned last year. One of these boats is usually stationed at the Amherstburg base to patrol the Detroit River and western Lake Erie.

Also at the base, the Sora search and rescue vessel has been returned to the water and is ready for action. New quarters were constructed at the base last year for their search and rescue crews. The Gull Isle is also stationed at the Amherstburg base and will soon be busy placing the remaining buoys.

The Crystal O is a back up ferry that operates between Amherstburg and Boblo Island. The Greek freighter, Chios Pride, was upbound Sunday morning. The Captain Ralph Tucker was downbound about 10 p.m. Sunday evening with a load of brine for General Chemical in Amherstburg. The Tucker departed Monday, and was upbound.

Griffon docked.
Close up.
Griffon departing.
Wide view of base.
Buoys lined up on the dock.
Crystal O docked in Amherstburg.
Chios Pride.
Stern view.
Ontario Provincial Police patrol boat.

Reported by: Dave Cozens

Federal Welland Departs

The Federal Welland departed the port of Antwerp, Belgium on Sunday. The Welland will cross the Atlantic Ocean heading for Montreal.

Federal Welland departing.
Stern view.

Reported by: Chris Rombouts

Melissa Desgagnés Prepares to Depart

The Melissa Desgagnés was preparing to depart Quebec City on Monday. The vessel is expected depart Thursday heading for Clarkson. She will reportedly be loading carrying cement at Clarkson.

Stern view.
Pilot house.
Another view.
View forward.
Builder plate.
Life boat.
Engine room.
Steering gear.
Popellor shaft.
Catherine Desgagnes docked in port.
Another view.
Stern view.
Cecilia Desgagnes.
Stern view.

Reported by: Sylvia Masson

Workboat Report

The following photos show recent activity within the workboat fleets.

A CDD work launch at Whitby.
Pushboat Daryl C. Hannah at Lemont.
Day Peckinpaugh laid up at Erie.
Indiana Harbor backing to the Port Authority.
Indiana Harbor stuck. Waiting for tug.
Boatwatcher stuck, attaching towline.
G-tug Kentucky clearing the dock.
Breaking ice.
Heading home.
Constellation's Ocean King.
Huge smoke stack.
Leslie Supertyfon 200 and work whistle, standard tug equipment.
Sunken push boat at Lemont.
Mac's old Susan Elizabeth (built 1886) is now at the tug museum in Kingston.
Mac's new Susan Elizabeth at Georgetown, SC.
Abandoned Navy tug at Panama City.
Stern view.

Reported by: Franz VonRiedel

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Today in Great Lakes History - April 08

The sea trials for the AMERICAN REPUBLIC were conducted in Green Bay on April 8-10, May 4-11 and 18, 1981.

The J.A. CAMPBELL was the first bulk carrier to load taconite pellets that were shipped from Reserve Mining’s Davis Works at Silver Bay MN on April 8, 1956.

On April 8, 1957 Great Lakes Steamship stock holders voted to sell the entire 16 ship fleet to four fleets.

On April 8, 1977 at Toledo the G.A. TOMLINSON required an estimated $235,000 to outfit her machinery for the up coming season.

The R.E. WEBSTER was launched April 8, 1905 as a) ELBERT H. GARY.

On April 8, 1969, LEON FALK, JR. entered Duluth harbor to become the first vessel to arrive from the lower lake region opening the 1969 shipping season at the head of the lakes. She loaded almost 20,700 tons of iron ore bound for Great Lakes Steel in Detroit.

The ELBERT H. GARY was launched on April 8, 1905.

April 8, 1998 - An unidentified worker was injured in a fall aboard the CITY OF MIDLAND 41 while it was being converted to a barge in Muskegon.

8 April 1871 was a bad day on the St. Clair River. The schooner A. MOSHER had favorable winds, so the captain decided to save the cost of a tow and sail up the St. Clair River without assistance from a tug. In the strong current at Port Huron, the vessel hit some old dock timbers, went out of control and collided with the down bound 3-masted schooner H. C. POST. The POST's main and fore masts were carried away in the collision. After some vehement arguing, the MOSHER sailed on while the POST anchored in mid-river while her skipper went ashore. The schooner JESSE ANDERSON then sailed out of the Black River and rammed right into the side of the POST. This finished the wrecking of the POST's aft mast. The ANDERSON went out of control and went aground on the river bank. The tug GEORGE H. PARKER tried to assist the ANDERSON, but she also got stuck on the mud bank. It was several hours before everything got cleaned up and river traffic was back to normal.

The steam ferry JULIA, owned by C. McElroy of St. Clair, Michigan, started running between St. Clair and Courtwright, Ontario on 8 April 1878. She was formerly named U. S. SURVEYOR. Before JULIA took over this service, the ferries R. F. CHILDS and MARY MILLS served in this capacity.

The steamer MANCOX (steel propeller crane freighter, 255', 1614 gt, built in 1903 at Superior, WI, originally H. G. DALTON) of Yankcanuck Steamship Lines was first through the Sault locks for the 1958 season at 7:05 AM on 8 April 1958. In locking through the Canadian lock, the MANCOX became the first ship to come through the new lock gates which were installed during the winter months. The American Sault locks had been ready for traffic since March 26 but the Canadian locks had the first ship.

Data from: Joe Barr, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Ice Jam Continues

Twin Ports vessel traffic was moving through Superior entry Sunday as icebreakers continued efforts to break through an ice jam blocking the Duluth ship canal.

The coal-laden Canadian Olympic departed Superior about 8 a.m. Sunday and proceeded through the two-mile wide ice field without icebreaker escort. The vessel was following the track opened Saturday by the Canadian Coast Guard Cutter Samuel Risley and the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Sundew.

While Canadian Olympic was leaving, the Risley was four miles away trying to again break a track into Duluth. The cutter made some progress backing and ramming, but as midday neared, it was still stopped by thick ice about 1.5 miles off the ship canal.

Inside the harbor Sunday morning, the Sundew was breaking ice in the turning basin off the DMIR ore docks as the John G. Munson backed out of the docks to depart. After fueling, the Munson was to depart through Superior entry.

Elsewhere in port, Canadian Progress was loading at Midwest Energy Terminal and expected to depart late in the afternoon. Paul R. Tregurtha was due next at the coal dock. Cason J. Callaway remained at the DMIR ore dock shiploader undergoing repairs.

There was some indication Sunday that the Sundew may be sent to Marquette to assist vessels stuck in the ice there. Conditions also reportedly were bad in Whitefish Bay, with the icebreaker Mackinaw assisting 10 ships trying to get through the ice.

In the Twin Ports, the ice jam remains densely packed and extending out about 2.5 miles. On the ice field, jumbled ice stands two to three feet high and undoubtedly extends much farther than that below water. Along the Minnesota shore, mounds of rock-hard ice stand 10 to 30 feet high. Complicating matters Sunday afternoon was an easterly wind strong enough to raise whitecaps on the lake.

Pictures by: Glenn Blaszkiewicz
Samuel Risley working the ice around the Duluth Port Terminal.
Passing the John G. Munson at the Murphy Fuel Dock.
Munson leaving the dock.
Crewman watches from the deck.
Close up.
Stern view.
Paul R. Tregurtha docked at St. Lawrence Cement waiting for her turn to load at SMET.
Munson heads for the Superior entry.
Heading for Lake Superior.
Passing the Superior lighthouse.

Reported by: Al Miller, Richard Mc Govern and Glenn Blaszkiewicz

Saginaw and Thompson Stuck off Marquette

Sunday night the Saginaw and Joseph H. Thompson were stuck in the ice outside the Marquette harbor about a mile and a half off shore.

Coast Guard icebreaker assistance is expected to come in to free the vessels late Sunday or early Monday.

Reported by: Lee Rowe, Art Pickering and Chad Michaels

Barker Departs

Early Sunday morning the James R. Baker departed the Soo after spending several days undergoing repairs to her hull. The Barker's steel hull was damaged while passing through ice in Whitefish Bay last week.

The Barker was downbound past DeTour, Mi. in the lower St. Marys River about 1 p.m. Sunday after being stuck in ice at the lower end of the Rock Cut. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Katmai Bay worked to free the Barker.

Reported by: Linda Stoetzer

Soo Lock Delays

A problem with the west guard boom on the Poe Lock delayed traffic at the Soo Locks all day Sunday. At 8 p.m. the problem appeared to be corrected and the Yankcanuck was easing into the Poe Lock downbound. The Poe Lock is the lock in operation at the Soo this early in the season.

Downbound traffic waiting to lock through included: Gordon C. Leitch waiting off West Pier and the Edgar B Speer waiting near Gros Cap.
Upbound traffic; Walter J McCarthy has been tied up to the Poe lock approach all day, while the Joe Block docked at the Carbide Dock around 7:30 p.m. and the CSL Tadoussac was in the process of securing at the Mac Lock approach at 8p.m.

Walter J McCarthy Jr. waiting Sunday evening .
Tug and barge used to repair the James R Barker departing the Carbide dock to allow the Joe Block to dock.
Joe Block turning to approach the dock.
CSL Tadoussac comes around the bend at Mission Pt.
Joe Block, CSL Tadoussac, work barge.
Joe Block close up.
CSL Tadoussac upbound.
Joe Block approaching Carbide Dock.
Tadoussac passing as Joe Block docks.
Joe Block secured at Carbide Dock.
CSL Tadoussac passing.

Reported by: Scott Best and Linda Stoetzer

Alpena and Iglehart in Port

The Steamer Alpena arrived in port at the Lafarge dock around midnight on Sunday. It loaded a cargo of cement that may be transferred to the tug Jacklyn M. and barge Integrity. The two are expected to meet in Lake Michigan near Seul Croix Point.

The J.A.W Iglehart arrived in port to load on Sunday, sailing from Milwaukee. The Iglehart was reported to be in need of repairs after a difficult transit through the Straights of Mackinac. The cement carrier was reported to be holed in two spots. Initially repairs were expected to be completed by Tuesday, but that was before crews found the second hole.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain and Therese Wrublik

Thunder Bay News

The Algorail was pulled out of Pascol drydock Sunday about 8pm. The drydock gate was pulled open on the Saturday and the Algorail was moved halfway out where she remained all day on Sunday. The reason for her waiting that way was not known at this time. Her boom was up and shipyard crews were seen working in and around a hold under the boom, as her crew hurried about the boat getting things ready for her entry into the 2003 season.

Gravel and Lake Tugs Peninsula and George N. Carleton assisted the Algorail out of drydock and placed her alongside the Canadian Transfer, which was already tied up at the dock. The Algorail and the Canadian Transfer are the only two remaining winter layup boats still in Port.

Other traffic on Sunday saw the Algocape head out onto the lake with help from the Thunder Bay Tug Service tug Point Valour. There she appeared to make steady headway thru the ice as she headed for the turn down the lake at Thunder Cape.

Reported by: Rob Farrow

Challenger in Milwaukee

The after end crews of the Southdown Challenger are busy bringing the 1906 cement carrier back to life for its 97 season on the Lakes. The main engine, a Skinner Uniflow steam engine, as well as the various support machinery is being readied for Coast Guard inspections. The balance of the crew is due to report April 14.

Tied up at the Milwaukee dock.
Steward 'Sam' Samawi shows off the Sunday dinner.
The Skinner goes back together.
Inside the crankcase showing one of the four cross heads, connecting rods and crankshaft counter weights.
One of the four pistons is pulled each year at lay up. Here it is being prepared to go back in.
New piston rings.
Carbon is scrapped from the piston.
One of the two main generators goes back together.
Working inside the crankcase.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Integrity in Muskegon

The barge Integrity and tug Jacklyn M. entered port Saturday night shortly before 9 p.m. They moored to the Mart dock astern of the Paul H. Townsend at 9:30pm. It is unknown if they are waiting out weather or if there is a lack of demand for cement.

Reported by: Bill Bell

Toledo Update

The Buffalo and Gemini remain in drydock at the Shipyard Sunday. The Nanticoke finished unloading ore at the Torco Dock on Saturday and proceeded upriver to the Andersons "E" Elevator to load grain. She was the first ore boat of the season for the Torco Ore Dock, as well as the first grain boat of the season for the Port of Toledo.

The new U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory was inbound the Maumee River Sunday afternoon. The cutter dock near Lafarge Cement about 2 p.m. Toledo is one of many stops for the cutter on its delivery trip off the lakes. Built in Marinette, Wi., the 225-foot buoy tender will be stationed in Homer, Alaska, where it will maintain buoys and other aids to navigation.

The H. Lee White is expected to depart from her winter lay-up berth at the old Interlake Iron Company Dock on Monday and will proceed to the CSX Coal Docks to load coal.

The next scheduled coal boats due into the CSX Docks will be the H. Lee White on a return visit on Tuesday. The Canadian Transport on Friday. The Arthur M. Anderson on Saturday. The CSL Niagara on Tuesday (15th), followed by the Saginaw on Wednesday (16th).

The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Docks will be the Jean Parisien on Tuesday, the Canadian Navigator, and Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin on Wednesday. The CSL Laurentien on Saturday. The CSL Niagara on Tuesday (15th), The Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin on Wednesday. (16th), followed by the Algowood on Thursday (17th).

Pictures by N. Schultheiss
Hickory upbound heading for the dock.
Hickory turning off the dock.
Crewmembers from Coast Guard Station Toledo wait to handle the lines.
Station Toledo's Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat.
Nicely equipped.
Hickory's crane.
Station Toledo crew looks on.
Stern view of Hickory.
Crew prepares to dock.
Hickory spins in the river to face outbound.
Approaching the dock.
Line thrown to the dock.
Tying up.
Hickory's name board.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Busy Sunday in Hamilton

The new lift cables installed over the winter on the Burlington Lift Bridge received a solid workout on Sunday afternoon, as a steady stream of vessels passing through the canal in and out of Hamilton Harbor kept the bridge operators busy.

Road traffic on Eastport Drive ground to a halt at one point when the bridge remained open for approximately 30 minutes to allow the departure of John D. Leitch, Canadian Prospector and the Frontenac in immediate succession. Arriving shortly afterward was CSL Niagara, as the crew of the James Norris prepared to depart. The Norris headed onto Lake Ontario Sunday evening on her first trip of the season.

Pictures by: Craig Ritchie
John D. Leitch outbound.
Stern view.
Canadian Prospector follows.
CSL Niagara inbound.
Stern view.
James Norris prepares to depart.
Pier Lighthouse.
WInd driven ice on the Hamilton Piers.
Another view.
Weather instruments on the pier.

Reported by: Craig Ritchie and Eric Holmes

Toronto Update

CCG Limnos came into port and went to anchor Thursday night, riding out the severe ice storm that hit the city. She shifted to Pier 29 on Friday, and departed early this Sunday morning.

Anchored Sunday in Humber Bay is a saltie which was upbound in the Seaway last week. It is likely waiting for Regina Oldendorff to finish unloading at the Redpath dock.

Algosoo was in during the weekend to unload a much needed cargo of road salt. It was reported that salt-spreading trucks were carting it away as fast as they could load it.

The charter vessel Oriole was out for a one-hour tour over the weekend, her first of the season.

The scheduled launching of the Royal Canadian Yacht Club's venerable tender Kwasind may be delayed due to weather. Originally scheduled for launching on Monday, the recent ice storm, and predicted snow for Monday will likely delay the hull painting and subsequent launching.

Reported by: Gerry O.

2003 Know Your Ships on the move after storm delay

Despite a severe spring storm that stranded a truck bearing a cargo of 2003 "Know Your Ships" somewhere in the Upper Peninsula over the weekend, the latest edition of the popular boatwatchers' guide is now on its way to ship fans.

Orders for this year's volume, featuring the historic steamer Kinsman Independent as Vessel of the Year, begin shipping out today.

Besides listing more than 2,000 vessels and their owners, year built, length, capacity, type of engine and former names, the 144-page "Know You Ships" contains more than 50 color photos of vessels in Great Lakes and Seaway service.

In addition, "Know Your Ships" includes 10 pages of colorful stack and flag markings, a section dedicated to the Soo Locks, Welland Canal and St. Lawrence Seaway, Jody Aho's "Marine Milestones," and "Passages," a look at the changes in the shipping scene since last year's book.
"Know Your Ships" is now in its 44th year.
To order, or view new sample pages visit:

Today in Great Lakes History - April 07

The CANADIAN TRANSPORT (2) was christened April 7, 1979.

The tanker ROBERT W. STEWART (b AMOCO MICHIGAN) was delivered to Standard Oil Co. on April 7, 1928 as the second largest tanker in service at the time of her launch.

JAMES LAUGHLIN was launched April 7, 1906.

The EMORY L. FORD was sold on April 7, 1965 to the Reiss Steamship Co. and renamed b) RAYMOND H. REISS, the last boat purchased by Reiss.

TEXACO BRAVE (1) arrived at Ramey's Bend from Toronto April 7, 1975 in tow of tugs G.W. ROGERS and BAGOTVILLE for scrapping.

In 1974 the THOMAS W. LAMONT loaded the initial shipment of ore for the season at the D.M. & I.R. ore docks in Duluth.

On 7 April 1871, the tug S.V.R. WATSON was towing the schooner S.G. SIMMONS out of Chicago harbor at noon when the WATSON stalled. The schooner plowed into her broadside, causing the tug to tip on her beam ends, take on water and sink. Four men were trapped below decks and drowned; two survived. The WATSON was later raised and returned to service.

On 7 April 1873, the contract for the building of a new carferry, MICHIGAN, for the Great Western Railway was awarded to the Jenkins Brothers of Windsor, Ontario. The new vessel was planned for service on the Detroit River. Her engines were built at Montreal by Canada Engine Works for a cost of $100,000. The hull alone cost $600,000.

Although the locks are not scheduled to open until Thursday, 12 April 1962, the Canadian Sault harbor was officially opened Saturday, 7 April 1962, when the tanker IMPERIAL LONDON pulled into the Imperial dock between the two hospitals. Captain Russel Knight accepted the traditional silk top hat. The IMPERIAL LONDON, carrying almost 1,000,000 gallons of gasoline, led the IMPERIAL SIMCOE, loaded with 19,000 barrels of fuel oil for household heating, up the St. Marys River to the Sault.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Sundew, Risley battle ice jam off Duluth

With several vessels chafing to leave port and more arriving off shore, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Sundew and the Canadian Coast Guard Cutter Samuel Risley spent Saturday battling thickly packed ice that plugged both entrances to the Twin Ports.

Strong northeast winds that blew for more than 36 hours packed ice into the Duluth Ship Canal and Superior Entry and built a tightly packed field of broken ice that extended three miles off shore by Saturday morning. No ships had been able to enter or leave port since Thursday morning, when Indiana Harbor tried to depart and was forced to retreat after being stopped in the ship canal.

Following two days of foul weather, Saturday dawned calm and clear. During the night, Arthur M. Anderson joined Indiana Harbor at the Duluth port terminal to await an opportunity to leave port. Out on the lake, the Canadian Olympic, Canadian Progress and the Paul R. Tregurtha were stopped in the ice field or waiting just outside it off the Duluth ship canal.

The icebreaking action began about 8 a.m. when the Risley arrived from Thunder Bay. The icebreaker made steady progress through the ice field off the Duluth ship canal until it slowed to a stop about 1. 5 miles out. After several unsuccessful attempts to back and ram through a pressure ridge, the Risley backed to the edge of the ice field, turned and proceeded toward Superior Entry.

As the Risley was retreating, the Canadian laker that had lain outside the ice field overnight made a play for the ship canal, getting under way and making good progress for about half a mile before being stopped by the same pressure ridge that stymied the Risley. The vessel remained there for much of the day. Meanwhile, the Tregurtha got under way later in the morning and moved out of the ice field before stopping.

The Risley commenced working the ice off Superior Entry. Meanwhile, the Sundew got under way and proceeded down the harbor's front channel and began working the packed, broken ice inside Superior Entry. Working together, the two ships managed to open a track through the Superior Entry despite a tough pressure ridge about a mile off shore. They made several passes through the entry trying to widen the track. Even with a barely discernable breeze, they reported enough pressure on the ice that the tracks were closing. By midday, the Risley's captain estimated that 5 or 6 more hours would be needed to open a track.

Their actions were followed with interest by the masters of several vessels. The Indiana Harbor and Arthur M. Anderson were particularly keen to get under way. At one point, the Sundew proceeded down the front channel with the masters of both ships aboard so they could see the ice for themselves to judge whether their vessels could get through.

Inside the harbor, Cason J. Callaway had departed its layup berth overnight and was loading at the DMIR ore docks. Kaye E. Barker was calling for a tug for early after so it could depart layup in Fraser Shipyards and load at Midwest Energy Terminal. John G. Munson had backed out of the Fraser Shipyards drydock, and Philip R. Clarke also was preparing to leave the shipyard. Outside the harbor, another 1,000-footer arrived, stopping about 6 miles out to await developments.

Shortly after 4 p.m., the Sundew delivered both masters back to the port terminal. The Indiana Harbor and the Anderson were both tied up along the north dock wall. The masters immediately returned to their ships and preparations were begun to get under way. At 4:30 p.m., the Anderson departed the dock with assistance of the tug North Dakota. As soon as the Anderson passed the Indiana Harbor, the 1,000-footer began getting under way. Both proceeded down the front channels to attempt to breakout through Superior Entry.

At the same time, about half a mile away, the Kaye E. Barker, with one tug on the stern, was backing out of Fraser Shipyards. About one ship length behind was John G. Munson, also backing out.

Out on the lake, news of the vessel movements prompted activity on the two Canadian lakers. Canadian Progress and Canadian Olympic began maneuvering in the ice field to get over toward the Superior entry, about four miles away. Both were eager to get through the ice track and into the harbor after the Anderson and Indiana Harbor passed outbound.

During the evening, ship traffic resumed, with at least three vessels arriving. Paul R. Tregurtha entered port at 7:04 p.m., exchanging security call information with Philip R. Clarke, which was preparing to leave Fraser Shipyards in Superior -- the last vessel of Great Lakes fleet to enter operations this season.

Pictures by: Al Miller
Samuel Risley widening the track in the Superior entry.
Samuel Risley passes into Superior harbor.
Sundew churns through packed ice inside Superior entry, with some of the old Great Northern ore docks in the background.
Having taken on fuel, the Arthur M. Anderson was on a loose tether at the Duluth port terminal, eager to get under way.
Video - Sundew working ice in Superior entry.
Video -Samuel Risley working ice in Superior entry.
Arthur M. Anderson gets under way in late afternoon to attempt to get out of port.
Anderson pushes away from the dock using tug and bow thruster .
Video - Anderson and tug movie.
Anderson passes the Indiana Harbor.
Anderson heads down the front channel to battle the ice.
Indiana Harbor pulls away from the dock to follow the Anderson. After some discussion earlier in the day, the masters agreed the Anderson might turn better into the Superior entry, so would be the logical choice to lead the way.
Indiana Harbor pulls away from the dock.

Pictures by: Glenn Blaszkiewicz
Canadian Progress, Canadian Olympic and Paul R. Tregurtha wait off the Duluth entry.
Wide view.
Boats wait of the ice packed Duluth entry.
Another view.
Looking past the ship canal light.
Indiana Harbor waits to depart.
John G. Munson and Kaye E. Barker depart the shipyard.
Kaye E. Barker.
Close up.
Passing the Clarke.
Trailing tug on the Barker.
Philip R. Clarke.
Anderson departing.
Another view.
Cason J. Callaway loading at DM&IR in Duluth.

Pictures by: Kent Rengo
Ice build up along the shore from the waves. The height of the ice was at least 15-feet in some areas.
Looking back to the Duluth Entry.
Canadian Progress and Canadian Olympic.
Tregurtha waits.
Philip R. Clarke and Armco at the ship yard.
Tug Minnesota breaking ice.
Kaye E. Barker departing.
Another view.
Close up.
Stern view.

Reported by: Al Miller, Glenn Blaszkiewicz, Richard Mc Govern and Kent Rengo

Saginaw and Thompson head for Marquette

While heading inbound for Marquette Saturday, the barge Joseph H. Thompson and tug Jr. got stuck in ice about 35 miles off Marquette. The tug and barge managed worked their way in to the Saginaw's position, which was about 15 miles off the Lake Superior port. Saturday evening the tug and barge appeared to be leading the Saginaw toward the harbor. The Saginaw was reported to be low on fuel after becoming stuck in the ice Friday.

Saginaw spent most of Saturday trying to free the vessel from the ice. By Saturday afternoon they had given up and expected to wait for the wind to change or for a Coast Guard icebreaker come in to free her.

The Saginaw reported that on a previous visit to Marquette last week they experience ice as thick as 8-feet. Saturday morning Marquette was under a winter storm warning with another 4-5 inches of snow predicted.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Art Pickering

Tadoussac Opens Saginaw

The Saginaw River had the first freighter traffic of the 2003 shipping season Saturday as the CSL Tadoussac arrived with a load of cement clinker. The Tadoussac was inbound passing the Front Range before noon, stopping at the Essroc Terminal in Essexville to unload. She was expected to depart sometime during the morning.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
CSL Tadoussac unloading at Essroc.
Another view.
View from Smith Park.

Reported by: Todd Shorkey, Lon Morgan and Stephan Hause

Morrow Bay Upbound

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay was upbound in the Welland Canal Saturday heading for the upper lakes. The Bay-class cutter is based in Yorktown, Va.

The Morro Bay is heading upbound for Cleveland and will assist with ice breaking on the lakes.

Picture by Marc Piché
Morro Bay departing Pier M-4, Montréal last week.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt and Gerry O.

Busy Day at the Soo

Saturday was a very busy day at the Soo Locks with a total of ten upbound vessels and two downbound. By mid afternoon a parade of vessels was starting to arrive at the locks, the first being the Stewart J. Cort upbound on there first trip of the season.

CSL's new vessels Birchglen and Spruceglen also were upbound, while the Pineglen locked downbound Saturday evening.

By Saturday evening several of the upbound vessels became stuck in ice on Whitefish Bay.

Upbound Saturday night was the Algolake and Halifax. The James R Barker remains tied up below the locks undergoing repairs.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw escorted the Alpena down to the locks Saturday morning and then tied up at West Pier to take on supplies and for crew change. The Cutter Katmai Bay was downbound in the lower St. Marys River Saturday morning near Johnson’s Point to break out the upbound Stewart J Cort, Mesabi Miner and Roger Blough.

The Mackinaw will get underway at first daylight Sunday morning along with the Coast Guard Cutter Katmai Bay to assist any stuck vessels in Whitefish Bay. The escort may include taking the convoy across Lake Superior.

Birchglen upbound above the locks.
Stewart J Cort passing.
Mesabi Miner arrives at the lower approach to the Poe Lock.

Reported by: Scott Best

Herbert C. Jackson departs Bay Shipbuilding

On Saturday afternoon the Herbert C. Jackson departed Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay, WI. She headed through the bridges and to Lake Michigan via the Ship Canal. The local Sturgeon Bay Coast Guard Station was out Saturday performing sea trials for the upcoming season.

Jackson outbound.
Close up.
Passing through the Michigan Street Bridge.
Entering the Ship Canal.
Heading for Lake Michigan.
Propeller wash.
Coast Guard general utility boat (note mid engine hatches are open).

Reported by: Carl Grota

Thunder Bay Traffic

Below are recent images taken in Thunder Bay.

Gordon C Leitch opens Thunder Bay's 2003 Season on April 1.
Point Valour breaking out Agricore United "a" slip .
USCG Sundew breaks out Glenada and Point Valour .
Danny laid up Amethyst Harbour, Thunder Bay .
Jim Dan D, a Ministry Fish Tug in Layup .
Melissa Current River Layup .
Fish Tugs at Current River Thunder Bay .
W.J. McKay wintering on Black Bay, Lake Superior.

Reported by: Rob Farrow

Milwaukee Update

The Peter Cresswell departed Milwaukee early Saturday morning after unloading salt. Three hours later fleet mate Algowood arrived. The Wood turned in the inner harbor and backed down to the Nidera grain elevator to load.

On Thursday the Great Lakes tugs Virginia and Arkansas completed fit out and returned to their dock at Jones Island. Both tugs spent the winter tied up in the Menomonee river valley. The old G-tug dock on the Milwaukee River at Water St. was sold last year for a condo development. Construction should be completed later this summer.

Algowood backing into port.
Condos at the former tug dock.
Port of Milwaukee's tug Harbor seagull with the G-Tug Virginia in the background.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Today in Great Lakes History - April 06

ALGOLAKE was christened April 6, 1977, she was the first maximum-sized ship of this type in Algoma's fleet with all cabins aft.

The HON. PAUL MARTIN departed Collingwood April 6, 1985 on her maiden voyage to load grain at Thunder Bay, Ont. bound for Quebec City, Que. She was the largest vessel built at Collingwood as a result of the new Seaway regulations that allowed increased hull lengths beyond the previous maximum overall of 730' to transit the lock systems.

PRAIRIE HARVEST (c) MELVIN H. BAKER II) sailed on her maiden voyage in 1984.

On April 6, 1990 CANADOC (2) was laid up at Montreal, Que. never to sail again.

NOTRE DAME VICTORY (b CLIFFS VICTORY) was delivered to Interocean Steamship Co. on April 6, 1945 under charter from the U.S.M.C.

FERNDALE (2) was launched April 6, 1912 as a) LOUIS R. DAVIDSON

April 6, 1931 - The CITY OF FLINT 32 set a world record sailing 101,000 miles in her first year of service.

On 6 April 1872, the schooner I.N. FOSTER was launched from the Fitzgerald & Leighton yard at Port Huron. She was classified as a "full-sized canaller" since she was as large as a vessel could be to pass through the Welland Canal. Her dimensions were 143' overall, 26'2" beam, 11'6" depth, 437 tons.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Risley Heads for Duluth

Friday night the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Samuel Risley departed Thunder Bay for Duluth. High winds have caused ice to pack into the Duluth entry preventing traffic from leaving or entering the Lake Superior port.

The wind driven ice has built up to a reported depth of 15 feet in some areas, theses ice conditions are more than the Duluth based U.C. Coast Guard Cutter Sundew or local tugs can manage.

Weather permitting the Risley should arrive outside the Duluth harbor about 9 a.m. Saturday morning.

Duluth Live Cam

Reported by: Paul Beesley

Traffic Backed Up by Weather and Ice

A nasty spring storm packing winds up to 40 mph Friday kept the pressure on the ice jam off Duluth, forcing several vessels to stay in port and one to anchor out on the lake.

City officials reportedly got the Coast Guard's blessing to keep the Aerial Lift Bridge closed to vessel traffic, fearing that the high winds could damage the span if it was forced to remain up for a long time while vessels battled ice in the ship canal. It was probably a moot point since the second day of strong northeasterly winds kept ice jammed into the ship canal and Superior Entry.

Coast Guard Cutter Sundew remained at its dock, and there was word late Friday that the Canadian icebreaker Samuel Risley may put in an appearance Saturday to clear the ice jam off Duluth Indiana Harbor, which failed to bust through the ice on Thursday, remained tied up at the Duluth port terminal, barely visible from the highway because of blowing snow. Arthur M. Anderson remained at the DMIR ore dock in Duluth.

Cason J. Callaway, Philip R. Clarke and John G. Munson were all waiting for weather in Fraser Shipyards. When the weather moderates the Callaway is set to load at DMIR in Duluth while the Clarke and Munson are scheduled for the DMIR dock in Two Harbors. Kaye E. Barker, which was due out this week, also remained in the shipyard Friday.

Out on the lake, Canadian Olympic reportedly was anchored about 8 miles off Duluth waiting for an opportunity to enter port to load at Midwest Energy Terminal. Farther up the shore, Edgar B. Speer was reported off Grand Marais, Minn., waiting for the weather to moderate before it can make Two Harbors.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Sundew remained at its dock Friday but reportedly will work the ice Saturday.

Reported by: Al Miller

Saginaw Stuck in the Ice

Friday night the Saginaw was stuck in the ice about 12 miles out from the Marquette harbor. The high winds causing problems in Duluth have caused the lake ice to pile up off Marquette. The Saginaw is waiting for ice breaker assistance.

The Joseph H. Thompson is expected Saturday morning but is likely in for a long delay. The Kaye E. Barker was scheduled to arrive Saturday but remains trapped in Duluth.

The Gallagher Marine barge in the upper harbor has been refloated.

Barge refloated.

Reported by: Lee Rowe

Leitch Opens Thunder Bay

In a small ceremony held Friday at Saskatchewan Pool 7a's slip, the Ceremonial Top Hat was given to the captain of the Gordon C. Leitch for being the first vessel to arrive in Port. The Leitch arrived in Port April 4, to officially open the 2003 Navigation Season. The Leitch's Captain reported heavy ice around Whitefish Bay but they encountered smooth sailing up until the Welcome Islands in Thunder Bay. From there it was slow going the last 6 miles or so into Port.

Three vessels have left their winter lay-up berths and departed the port this past week. The Atlantic Erie was the first to go, loading and departing downbound. The Canadian Olympic was the third vessel to leave her layup but the second to depart port, as she headed for Duluth/Superior to load. The Pineglen loaded and has since apparently departed.

The Algorail is in drydock at Pascol Engineering and the Canadian Transfer is still tied up there dockside. The Algomarine remains tied up at Keefer Terminals.

The Samuel Risley and the tug Point Valour have been steadily breaking out the harbor and the Elevator slips around the Port this past week. Ice is still heavy in Thunder Bay and is expected to remain that way for awhile. Recent cold temperatures and snow storms have not helped the situation.

Reported by: Rob Farrow

Soo Update

Ice and weather are delaying the upbound passage of the Mesabi Miner, Birchglen and Roger Blough which is expected to arrive in the lower river tonight and join the Miner and Birchglen at anchor. The Katmai Bay is expected to assist the vessels Saturday morning.

Strong northeast winds are moving some of the ice around in the river and in Whitefish Bay. Friday evening the Algosteel departed the Algoma Export dock downbound for Clarkson with slag. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw was working in Whitefish Bay Friday and was expected to wait in Whitefish Bay to assist the Alpena Saturday morning and possibly the Great Lakes Trader.

Weather and ice permitting it could make for a nice parade of vessels at the Soo Saturday afternoon. The James R. Barker remains tied up at the approach wall to the Mac Lock.

Reported by: Scott Best

Cuyahoga Departs Lay-up

Shortly after 7 p.m. Friday night the Lower Lakes Towing self-unloader Cuyahoga departed her lay-up berth. She gave the Masters' Salute and headed off onto Lake Erie to begin her 2003 season.

Reported by: Joan Wilton

Mackinaw Busy in Whitefish Bay

The U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Mackinaw spent Wednesday assisting numerous freighters trying to battle through difficult ice conditions on Lake Superior's Whitefish Bay.

The day began shortly after midnight with the Mackinaw aiding the Algocape, which was beset about 2.5 miles north of Whitefish Point. Next the icebreaker met the Joseph L. Block to escort it through the worst of the ice.

Shortly before 5 a.m., the Mackinaw came to the aid of the Gordon Leitch, which was beset 3 miles southeast of Whitefish Point. Both vessels were unable to make progress, so about an hour later the Mackinaw was diverted to assist the downbound vessels Walter J. McCarthy Jr., Presque Isle and Saginaw as they passed through ice above Whitefish Point.

Responding to reports that Algocape and Alpena were beset in large drifting ice floes, the Mackinaw arrived at their location shortly before 7 a.m. The icebreaker assisted Alpena, enabling it to move from 1.3 miles north of Whitefish Point to 3.5 miles northwest of Whitefish Point.

The Mackinaw then returned to the Saginaw, which was again beset. Mackinaw broke free the Saginaw and escorted it downbound.

Shortly after 10 a.m., Mackinaw returned to the Leitch and got it moving again. By 1:20 p.m., the Mackinaw was working with the Algocape, completing that task shortly before 3 p.m.

Next, the Mackinaw began running a track through the ice along the Lake Carriers' Association recommended downbound course. Near dark, it hove to off Ile Parisienne to await upbound vessels.

The Mackinaw reported it was unable to maintain a track through the ice between Ile Parisienne and Whitefish Point due to large, drifting ice floes and strong winds. The vessel was planning to get under way about 10 p.m. to escort the upbound Paul R. Tregurtha and Oglebay Norton and the downbound Atlantic Erie.

Reported by: Philip Nash

McKee Sons Opens Cleveland

On Friday the barge McKee Sons and tug Invincible became the first boat in Cleveland for the 2003 season. The tug and barge arrived empty docking at Ontario Stone.

The American Republic and the Earl W. Oglebay are still in lay-up. The Fred R. White Jr. continues on the shuttle from Cleveland Bulk Terminal to the ISG dock on the Cuyahoga River.

Reported by: Bill Kloss

St. Clair River Traffic

The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. was downbound at noon Friday. The Algolake was downbound, then turned in the river to dock at the Shell Oil Dock in Sarnia.

Reported by: Bob Mattson

Today in Great Lakes History - April 05

On April 5, 1984 the joined sections of the HILDA MARJANNE and CHIMO's emerged from the Port Weller Dry Dock as the b) CANADIAN RANGER.

Sea trials for the PRAIRIE HARVEST (c) MELVIN H. BAKER II) were complete on April 5, 1984.

The G.G. POST was launched April 5, 1902 as a) LUZON

April 5, 1977 - Chessie System announced that the CITY OF MIDLAND 41 would be withdrawn from service and only the SPARTAN and BADGER would run for the season.

On 5 April 1854, AMERICA (wooden side-wheeler, 240', 1083 t, built in 1847 at Port Huron) was bound for Cleveland from Detroit. After the captain had set her course and gone to bed, the 2nd mate changed the course to the north. The 1st and 2nd mates disagreed about the course and as they awoke the captain, the ship ran aground near Point Pelee. Wave action reduced the vessel to rubble but no lives were lost.

On 5 April 1879, the 3-mast wooden schooner RESUMPTION was launched at the Wolf & Davidson yard in Milwaukee, WI. Her dimensions were 143' x 29' x 10', 294 gross tons, 279 net tons.

April 5, 1962 the Steve Robert W. Stewart was renamed to Amoco Michigan, The William P. Cowan was renamed to Amoco Illinois, the Edward G. Seubert was renamed Amoco Wisconsin and the Red Crow was renamed Amoco Indiana...after being transferred from Standard Oil Company in a sale to the American Oil Company for $10 each ship. Each ship traded in their names and their well known red superstructure for a typical white paint job instead which stuck with them until their end. The only change came to the Amoco Indiana when she traded in her black hull for Medusa (now Southdown) hull color.

Data from: Steve Haverty, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection and the Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Indiana Harbor stopped by Duluth ice jam

Indiana Harbor was stopped in the ice just inside Duluth harbor Thursday morning after strong northeast winds jammed loose ice into a mass in the western tip of Lake Superior and the Duluth ship canal.

A tug from Great Lakes Towing was attempting to assist the 1,000-footer about 7:30 a.m. Thursday, but with winds reaching 37 mph blowing ice into the canal, little progress was being made. The tug was able to slowly proceed from the Indiana Harbor's position to the Aerial Lift Bridge, but it was stopped by the ice just short of the bridge. The tug was backing and ramming in an effort to pass beneath the bridge.

Indiana Harbor loaded Wednesday at Midwest Energy Terminal. It was attempting to depart when it was stopped by the ice.

Western Lake Superior has been largely ice free for the past week, but 30 mph northeast winds Wednesday night and Thursday morning pushed loose ice into a mass off Duluth and Superior entries. The ice off Duluth extended about 2 miles into the lake and was jammed into the ship canal and the inner harbor.

After several unsuccessful attempts Thursday morning to penetrate the ice jam, the Indiana Harbor remained stopped in ice inside the harbor at midday.

The Indiana Harbor was stopped at a 45-degree angle to the end of the ship canal, and appeared to be trying to back out of the turning basin and back to the Duluth port terminal. One tug from Great Lakes Towing continued to work the packed ice around the boat.

The Indiana Harbor's efforts to push through the canal at mid-morning apparently dislodged a large amount of ice, which blew in the harbor, leaving an area of open water in the canal.

The Indiana Harbor finally made it through the ice and back to the Duluth port terminal Thursday afternoon. By 4:30 p.m. the vessel was tied up at the terminal waiting for the wind -- which was gusting to 50 mph and driving light snow before it -- to subside. During its attempt to punch through the ice in the ship canal, the vessel kept the Duluth Aerial Bridge raised for about an hour.

The only other active vessel in port Thursday was Arthur M. Anderson, which spent the day beneath the gravity chutes at the DMIR ore dock, marking an unexpectedly early start for that dock. The Anderson had no scheduled departure time because of the high winds.

This early in the season there's still relatively little ship traffic on Lake Superior. But Edgar B. Speer was out there Thursday, anchored off the Apostle Islands waiting for the winds to ease before proceeding to Two Harbors.

Indiana Harbor at midday, stopped in the ice in Duluth's inner harbor while a GLT tug works the compacted mass of ice.
Close up of Indiana Harbor.
Close up of the tug.

Duluth Live Cam

Reported by: Al Miller

Spruceglen Upbound

Thursday night the Spruceglen was passing upbound on Lake Erie at Long Point. The vessel had spent most of the day in the Port Colborne Anchorage with engine trouble. The Spruceglen was expected to arrive at Southeast Shoal in Western Lake Erie about 6 a.m. She is headed to Duluth to load grain.

First saltie to pass through the Welland Canal was expected last night, weather permitting. The Chios Pride arrived off Port Weller about 5 p.m. and went to anchor.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt and Jeff Thoreson

Oldendorff Refloated

The Helena Oldendorff was pulled from her grounding point on Thursday morning. The vessel ran aground on Wednesday at Buoy D 26 in Lake St. Francis. She proceeded under her own power to the Snell Lock where divers were standing by to inspect the vessel.

Reported by: Kent Malo

Mail Boat Prepares for New Season

The U.S. Mail boat J.W. Westcott II is painted and ready for another season on the Detroit River. The Westcott is receiving a new rudder and new bearings, as well as an overhaul of its steering gear.

The Westcott is expected to be floated at Gregory’s Marina in Detroit on April 7 and return to service on April 10.

Reported by: Capt. Sam Buchanan

Cort Departs

Miserable weather didn't prevent the Stewart J. Cort from departing its Milwaukee lay up dock Thursday. Captain Dave Mathie backed the Cort into stiff NE winds as he navigated the inner mooring basin. Assisting were 1st Mate Charlie Boles, 2nd Mate "Fast Eddie" Gaynor and 3rd Mate Doug Glass. After clearing the outer piers the Cort made a giant 'Y' turn and headed up the lake.

3rd Mate Doug Glass waves good-bye to Milwaukee.
Cort departs.
Tight fit.
Bow view.
Cort outbound.
Passign the inner break wall.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Voinovich, Stupak Named Top Lakes Legislators

Senator George V. Voinovich (R-OH) and Congressman Bart Stupak (D-MI) as its Great Lakes Legislators of the Year. The awards are presented annually to legislators who best advance the interests of Great Lakes shipping in our nation’s capitol. Senator Voinovich and Rep. Stupak will receive their awards at the Task Force’s annual presentation to the Great Lakes delegation in Washington on May 7.
Click here for more information on the awards.

Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association

Marquette News

The Saginaw is expected to return to Marquette on Friday, ice conditions permitting. The Kaye Barker is due on Saturday with a load of coal for the Presque Isle power plant, and she will then take on a load of ore. The Joseph H. Thompson/Jr. is expected late on Saturday.

Just a few hours after the arrival of the Saginaw Wednesday, the Great Lakes Trader made its first visit of the season when she pulled into the south side of the ore dock. Both the Saginaw and the Great Lakes Trader traveled to Marquette without icebreaker escort.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Art Pickering

Goderich Update

The Peter R. Cresswell arrived in Goderich Tuesday afternoon. She was seen backing in to the harbor with the assistance of two tugs. There was some ice to break but appears to be thinning. She is taking her load of salt to Milwaukee and Chicago.

The Algowood loaded salt all day Wednesday and departed late evening for Chicago. The Algolake is expected to arrive Friday, also for a load of salt.

Reported by: Lisa Stuparyk

Toronto Update

The cement carrier English River arrived overnight and departed late Thursday afternoon for Bath. The Stephen B. Roman departed earlier in the day for Picton. Regina Oldendorff continued unloading her raw sugar cargo at Redpath dock.

McNally's tugs Whitby and R.C.L. 11 were busy Thursday shuttling workers to the island.

The charter vessel Stella Borealis came out of winter hibernation Thursday and was out briefly for trials.

Wednesday the Port Authority launched its small tug Kenneth A. and its workboat Osprey at their yard on the Keating Channel.

Friday evening at 7:30 p.m. Ted Wickson will present a slide show on Toronto Harbour at the Toronto Marine Historical Society's April meeting, held at the Swansea Town Hall. Visitors are welcomed. Ted will have copies of his new book about Toronto Harbour for sale. For more information visit the TMHS web page

Reported by: Gerry O.

St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

The Pierre Radisson left the Seaway Thursday after her week long mission in the Seaway and Lake Ontario.

Pierre Radisson downbound from Seaway, April 3.
Pierre Radisson, stern view, April 3.
Morro Bay pulling away from Pier M-4, Montréal, April 2.
Morro Bay maneuvering in Bickerdyke Basin, Montréal, April 2.
Morro Bay's stern as the cutter is swinging around off berth M-4, Montréal, April 2.
Morro Bay ready to proceed downriver to Seaway, April 2.
Morro Bay with Montréal skyline & wintering lakers in background, April 2.
Morro Bay departing Montréal, April 2.
Ferbec wintering at berth M-1 & Cast Progress undergoing repairs, Montréal, April 2.
Welders repairing Cast Progress' bulbous bow at berth B-1, Montréal.
Algocen, Quebecois, Canadian Miner & Algoville at Alexandra Pier, Montréal, April 2.
Tsuru approaching Verchères, April 3.
Tsuru, upbound for Montréal, April 3.
Tsuru, stern view.

Reported by: Marc Piché

Workboat Report

The following photos show recent activity within the tugboat fleets.

Boston Towing's Railroad tug Cornell in action.
Constellation Towing Corporation's big tugs Draco, Orion And Port Service wait between jobs in East Boston.
Vintage tug Flushing working the construction trade in Boston.
Her beautiful builders plate.
Pouring the coal to it while turning a barge.
The smokey culprit: An opposed-piston Fairbanks-Morse 38D-8 1/8 diesel.
The canaller Frances Turecamo now at the Kingston tugboat museum.
Gregg Mcallister and William Mcallister at Newport News. The Gregg worked the Great Lakes as the S.M. Dean.
Stern view.
General Marine's Hannah D. Hannah spins a Memco barge at Burns Harbor.
Breaking out the tugs (by hand) to break out the ships at Goderich.
Kathleen Turecamo running on the Hudson River near Albany.
Kathleen getting a line on an ocean ship ready to leave.
G-tug Kentucky busting out the shipyard.
G-tug North Dakota cutting a track along side the Armco.
At the end of the line, she climbs high out of the water as her weight crushes the 2' of ice.
Former Gaelic tug Kinsale resting in the mud at Jacksonville.
Side view.
Steamer Mathilda rests at the marine museum in Kingston, NY.
Huge Navy tug Mohawk working the Delaware River.
Vintage tug Mount Mckay inbound Duluth the hard way. Not a real photo
Mr. Albert sitting ashore in Freeport.
A pile of big tugs abandoned at Panama City.

Reported by: Franz VonRiedel

Today in Great Lakes History - April 04

The keel was laid April 4, 1978 for the Fred R. White Jr.

Sea trials of the tanker ROBERT W. STEWART were run on April 4, 1928

CEDARGLEN was launched on April 4, 1925 as a) WILLIAM C. ATWATER

HARRY W. CROFT was launched April 4, 1908 as a) FRED G. HARTWELL (1)

The E.G. GRACE became the first Maritimer to be sold for scrap when she was sold to Marine Salvage April 4, 1984.

JEAN-TALON was launched April 4, 1936 as a) FRANQUELIN (1)

The Harbor Tug and Fire Boat EDNA G. was launched April 4, 1896

On April 4, 1983 and on April 4, 1984, the William Clay Ford (1) opened the inter-lake shipping season at Duluth. While the William Clay Ford was traditionally among the first vessels to visit Duluth-Superior, it was coincidence that she opened the port on the same day during her last two seasons in service.

On 4 April 1872, the schooner JOHN WESLEY was launched from Bailey's yard at Toledo, OH. She was built for Skidmore & Abairs. She was classed as a full sized canaller and cost $22,000.

On 4 April 1881, the last two vessels of the Northern Transit Company, CHAMPLAIN and LAWRENCE, were sold to D. H. Day & Company of Grand Haven, MI.

Data from: Joe Barr, Jody Aho, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

Indiana Harbor stopped by Duluth ice jam

04/03 5:30 p.m. Update
Indiana Harbor finally made it through the ice and back to the Duluth port terminal Thursday afternoon. By 4:30 p.m. the vessel was tied up at the terminal waiting for the wind -- which was gusting to 50 mph and driving light snow before it -- to subside. During its attempt to punch through the ice in the ship canal, the vessel kept the Duluth Aerial Bridge raised for about an hour.

The only other active vessel in port Thursday was Arthur M. Anderson, which spent the day beneath the gravity chutes at the DMIR ore dock, marking an unexpectedly early start for that dock. The Anderson had no scheduled departure time because of the high winds.

This early in the season there's still relatively little ship traffic on Lake Superior. But Edgar B. Speer was out there Thursday, anchored off the Apostle Islands waiting for the winds to ease before proceeding to Two Harbors.

1:30 p.m. report
After several unsuccessful attempts Thursday morning to penetrate an ice jam in the Duluth ship canal, the Indiana Harbor remained stopped in ice inside the harbor at midday.

The Indiana Harbor was stopped at a 45-degree angle to the end of the ship canal, and appeared to be trying to back out of the turning basin and back to the Duluth port terminal. One tug from Great Lakes Towing continued to work the packed ice around the boat.

The Indiana Harbor's efforts to push through the canal at mid-morning apparently dislodged a large amount of ice, which blew in the harbor, leaving an area of open water in the canal.

Winds have been from the east-northeast at 35 to 38 mph since 7 a.m. -- ideal conditions for packing loose, broken ice into a shorebound mass that can extend many feet under water.

Indiana Harbor at midday, stopped in the ice in Duluth's inner harbor while a GLT tug works the compacted mass of ice.
Closeup of Indiana Harbor.
Closeup of the tug.

9:30 a.m. report
Indiana Harbor has made several unsuccessful attempts to push through the wind-driven ice jam clogging the Duluth ship canal.

The vessel has passed back and forth beneath the bridge several times, but has been unable to clear the canal. By 9:30 a.m., it had left an area of open water in the canal where it had pushed the ice aside.

7:45 a.m. report
Indiana Harbor was stopped in the ice just inside Duluth harbor Thursday morning after strong northeast winds jammed loose ice into a mass in the western tip of Lake Superior and the Duluth ship canal.

A tug from Great Lakes Towing was attempting to assist the 1,000-footer about 7:30 a.m. Thursday, but with winds reaching 37 mph blowing ice into the canal, little progress was being made. The tug was able to slowly proceed from the Indiana Harbor's position to the Aerial Lift Bridge, but it was stopped by the ice just short of the bridge. The tug was backing and ramming in an effort to pass beneath the bridge.

Indiana Harbor loaded Wednesday at Midwest Energy Terminal. It was attempting to depart when it was stopped by the ice. The vessel is lined up on the ship canal about 1,500 feet from the inner end. It doesn't appear to be stuck, because the vessel is moving back and forth a short distance, and a small area of open water existed of its stern on the starboard side.

Western Lake Superior has been largely ice free for the past week, but 30 mph northeast winds Wednesday night and Thursday morning pushed loose ice into a mass off Duluth and Superior entries. The ice off Duluth extended about 2 miles into the lake and was jammed into the ship canal and the inner harbor.

Duluth Live Cam

Reported by: Al Miller

Ice Damages Bow

The James R. Barker arrived at the Soo Locks Wednesday with damaged to her bow caused by heavy ice on Whitefish Bay.

The Barker was downbound in ballast when crews noticed the water level in the number 1 starboard ballast tank had gone from 12-feet to 16-feet. Crews started the ballast pump and the level returned to normal. This appeared to be a minor problem with a valve and the vessel continued on.

The Barker reached the Soo Locks and passed through the Poe Lock. As the Barker passed through the lock, the water level in the ballast tank began to rise faster than the pumps could remove the water. This indicated that the hull had been holed by ice. The ice acted as a plug until the Barker stopped and the ice worked free allowing a higher volume of water to flow in.

The Barker tied up at the lower approach to the Poe Lock and divers were called to survey the damage. Hidden two-feet below the water line was a four-foot weld fracture that allowed water to flow into the ballast tank. Another area near the fracture had been pushed in about a foot but not breached.

Divers completed temporary repairs and the leaking ballast tank was pumped empty. The bow was then riding higher than before and the damaged area was above the water line.

The Barker shifted to the lower approach of the MacArthur Lock where permanent repairs are now being made.

There was no damage to the Poe Lock during the incident as the draft of the Barker never exceeded 25-feet. Ships like the Barker are designed with multiple ballast tanks, this design allows one tank to take on water while the others remain dry.

This is the second incident this winter in which a steel hulled vessel has been holed by ice. The barge McAsphalt 401 was damaged by ice on Lake Eire in late February.

James R. Barker stopped below the Poe Lock Wednesday afternoon.
Close up.
Moved to below the MacArthur Lock.
Another view.
Algocape passing on Wednesday.
Another view.
More information on the James R. Barker.

Reported by Scott Best

One Icebreaker Turns Back, Other continues Upbound

Rotting ice on Lake Erie and Lake Huron has cancelled the much anticipated visit of the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Pierre Radisson to the lower lakes.

Mild temperatures, wind and rain in late March helped ease ice conditions on the lower lakes. In recent weeks the ice coverage across Lake Huron and Lake Erie went from 80-85% to 25 %.

Officials decided that with the changing conditions the Radisson could be better used in Quebec. The Radisson broke an excellent track through the ice from Montreal to Lake Ontario. She stood by at Cape Vincent to assist shipping and then on Monday was sent east again.

This week the Canadian Coast Guard ship Samuel Risley was breaking out Thunder Bay, the Griffon was working Lake Erie and the Simcoe was working with the George R. Pearkes in Lake St. Francis.

The upper lakes remain the site of difficult ice conditions. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay was upbound in the Seaway on Wednesday heading for the lakes. The Bay-class cutter is based in Yorktown, Va.

The Morro bay entered the Seaway at 11:30 a.m. and proceeded to Lock 1 at St. Lambert. The Morro Bay is heading upbound for Cleveland and will assist with ice breaking on the lakes.

Pictures by Kent Malo
USCGC Morro Bay 106, departing Montreal going by the Clock Tower at Victoria Pier.
close up of the USCGC Morro Bay.
Morro Bay dwarfed by the M/V Artic.

Reported by: Mike Hines and Kent Malo

Helena Oldendorff Grounds

Wednesday morning the Helena Oldendorff went aground at Buoy Delta 26, in Lake St. Francis near CIP 6. She was out of the channel on the north side and not blocking traffic. It is unknown why the vessel grounded.

The Liberian flagged freighter is loaded with steel for Cleveland.

In other Seaway news, the Canadian flagged Motor Vessel "Artic" in Montreal having work, these are repairs that normally take place this time of year, Fednav operates the vessel.

M/V Artic showing her massive Ice breaking bow.
Wheel house and accommodations of the M/V Artic .
Federal Yoshino pushing through broken ice above the lock at Cote Ste. Catherine.

Reported by: Kent Malo

Sturgeon Bay Departures

The 1000-foot ships Paul R. Tregurtha and Mesabi Miner departed Bay Ship Wednesday. The Tregurtha was the first out that morning heading upbound on Green Bay. As the Paul R. was departing the wind picked up and closed the track in the ice, trapping the Paul R. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mobil Bay was quickly on scene and freed the Tregurtha.

The Mesabi Miner departed in late afternoon and powered out to Green Bay with out assistance. Both ships are heading upbound to Escanaba, Mi. for there first loads of the season.

The Charles M. Beeghly was scheduled to depart Wednesday, but was delayed. She was expected to depart Wednesday night or Thursday morning.

Bow out past her fleet mate Mesabi Miner.
Stern out past Miner.
Out bound.
Paul R. trapped in ice.
Miner departs.

Reported by: Vic DeLarwelle

Twin Ports Report

Indiana Harbor began its season Tuesday by loading coal at Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior. Arthur M. Anderson slipped out of port Monday night to load taconite pellets at Two Harbors.

Reported by: Al Miller

Block in Two Harbors

Below are images taken from the Joseph L. Block.

Joseph L. Block at Two Harbors.
Block in Whitefish Bay ice.
Presque Isle loading at Two Harbors.
Whitefish Point lighthouse from Block.

Reported by: Eric Treece

Marquette Update

After unloading ore at Algoma, the Saginaw returned to Marquette arriving about 11 a.m. Wednesday morning. The trip from Marquette to the Soo under perfect conditions normally takes about 11 hours. The Saginaw is taking on another load for Algoma Steel in the Soo.

The Kaye Barker was loading coal in Superior Wednesday for Wisconsin Electric in Marquette. They expected to depart Wednesday night. Under normal conditions the trip from Duluth to Marquette is about 24 hours. Ice could delay her arrival.

Pictures by Lee Rowe
Saginaw loading.
Close up.
Great Lakes Trader.
Close up.
Bow view.
Gallagher dredge moored in the harbor near the marina.
Close up.

Reported by: Art Pickering and Lee Rowe

Sarnia Fitout

Work on board the Mississagi, Calumet and Maumee continues at a fast pace. All three vessels are expected to be back sailing with in a week. Crews from Fraser Machine, Shelley Marine as well as crew members are all working to complete the final fitout.

Wednesday a crew from Shelly marine was completing repairs on the port side of the Mississagi and were using hot riveting. The big sixteen cylinder Nordberg on the Calumet, had new heads reinstalled. While the Maumee was getting new steel.

Rivets are heated.
Placed in the hull.
Crew on deck of the Calumet.
Work in the engine room.

Reported by: Ted Coombs

Detroit Traffic

Barge Ocean Hauler & tug Doug Mc Keil downbound in the Ballards Reef Channel headed for the General Chemical Dock in Amherstburg Wednesday.
Close up.
Tug Sea Eagle II and Barge St Marys Cement II at the Blue Circle Dock on the Rouge River in Detroit.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls

Lower Detroit River News

The Canadian Coast Guard Ship Gull Isle has completed setting buoys in the Amherstburg Channel of the Detroit River. Upbound traffic which has been using the Livingston Channel all winter has now been returned to the Amherstburg Channel.

Recent traffic has included the Gordon C. Leitch and the Canadian Progress on April 1 and the Oglebay Norton April 2. Amherstburg's Navy Yard Park is great for ship watching as the upbound channel is only 750 feet from shore. Two way traffic can be seen just north of the town, about 1500 feet from shore.

Gull Isle.
Sun set.

Reported by: Dave Cozens

Toledo News

The Buffalo and Gemini are in drydock at Toledo Shipyard. The Canadian Transport is due in at the CSX Coal Docks to load coal late Wednesday evening. The next scheduled coal boats due in at the CSX Docks will be the Canadian Transport on Saturday. The H. Lee White on Monday, followed by a return visit of the H. Lee White on Tuesday. The Arthur M. Anderson on Wednesday and the CSL Niagara and Saginaw on Tuesday (April 15).

The first scheduled ore boat of the season for the Torco Ore Dock will be the Nanticoke on Friday. The Oglebay Norton departed her winter lay-up berth at the T.W.I. Dock Wednesday morning. The Reserve and Middletown are also at the T.W.I. Dock and are expected to sail around April 9.

The David Z. Norton is at the Torco Ore Dock. The Courtney Burton, Saturn, and the ex Boblo passenger vessel Ste. Claire are at the Lakefront Docks. The Wolverine and Adam E. Cornelius are at the CSX Docks. The ex N/S Railroad carfloats Roanoke and Windsor are at the CSX Docks "Frog Pond" area. The H. Lee White is at the old Interlake Iron Company Dock. The Joseph H. Frantz at the Hocking Valley South Dock. The Buckeye, and museum vessel Willis B. Boyer are at the City Docks.

So far this season there have been no vessels in port to load grain.

Classic views of Great Lakes Shipping
Kinsman Venture outbound at the North end of the Portage Ship Canal on the Keweenaw Peninsula near Houghton/Hancock, Michigan.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Erie Update

The McKee Sons and tug Invincible paid their first ever visit to Erie on Wednesday, opening the 2003 season in the process. The McKee Sons arrived at approximately 3:30 p.m. with stone from Port Colborne. She entered port, turned in the basin and docked at the Mounfort Terminal.

The McKee Sons is just the first of many vessels expected to call on the port in 2003. Numerous road projects are expected keep the demand for stone high. Among those are phase three of the Bayfront Parkway extension. When complete in 2006, this will allow motorists to go straight from Erie's bayfront to Interstate 90.

The last visit the McKee Sons paid to Erie was in 1993, when pushed by the Olive L. Moore. They unloaded stone at the then-Codan Dock, which is now the Mounfort Terminal. The last time Lower Lakes Towing/Grand River Navigation had a vessel open the season for Erie was in 1997, when the Cuyahoga visited with stone from Port Colborne. In 2002, the Lee A. Tregurtha delivered stone from Stoneport to open Erie's season.

McKee Sons inbound.
Another view.
Close up.
Close up of the Invincible.
Stern view.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Toronto Report

The first saltie of the season arrived in port Wednesday morning, but it was not the first arrival of the day. McKeil's tug Progress arrived from Hamilton in time to assist the tug Atomic with docking Regina Oldendorff at the Redpath Sugar Co. Afterwards, Progress remained in port at the McKeil dock by the Cherry St. Bridge. Atomic has been here all winter.

The Spruceglen got underway late Tuesday night. and was anchored off the Port Weller piers Wednesday morning waiting to transit the canal.

Several charter boats shifted to summer berths Wednesday. Mariposa Cruise Lines' Torontonian and Oriole were moved back to Harbourfront. Harbour Star was moved to Harbourfront late Tuesday.

Enterprise 2000, which wintered in the Yonge St. slip, went to Polson Quay Wednesday, but rumor has it that the company intends to move to the Yonge Street slip for the summer.

Stephen B. Roman continued unloading cement at the Essroc dock. The ferry Ongiara remains on Toronto Drydock. Vehicles to the island must now use the island airport ferry Maple City and they must afterwards scurry across the runways of the island airport to the back gate for the island park. Water taxi service has returned

Reported by: Gerry O.

St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

Vega Pioneer downbound from Montréal, April 1.
Lykes Runner upbound to Montréal, March 31.
SPICA downbound from Montréal.
Nordic Blossom downbound from Montréal, March 27.
Nanticoke, first laker out of winter layup, downbound from Montréal, March 27.
Sandviken downbound from Montréal, March 20.
Cabot downbound from Montréal to Newfoundland, March 20.
Sapphire downbound from Montréal, March 17.
MSC Brianna replacing MSC Canada, downbound from Montréal, March 15.
Stern view.

Reported by: Marc Piché

Samuel Risley in Thunder Bay

Scenes from Thunder Bay, Ontario, April 1 and 2, 2003. The Mission river:
Scenery as the Samuel Risley went upstream to break ice.
Long-abandoned factory on the Mission.
A rotting dock.
Wreck at the mouth of the Mission.
Another view of the wreck.

Pineglen leaving her winter berth for her first load of the year.
Pineglen with the Atlantic Erie visible in the background.
Working through the ice to Pool 7A.
Approaching the Pool.

CCG Base Thunder Bay:
Bell 212 in the area to relight all the shore lights for the shipping season.
Another view of the 212.
CCGC (Cutter) Cape Lambton out of the water for the winter.
Another view of the Cape Lambton.
CCGS (Ship) Samuel Risley secured at the base after another day of icebreaking.

Railroad Stuff in Thunder Bay:
Mock-up of commuter coach from South America. Risley 3rd mate inside.
Another view of the mock-up.
Coupling on a real commuter coach from South America.
A complete coach. These have been brought to Thunder Bay to be refurbished by Bombardier.
The insignia on the side of one of the coaches.
A railroad Whatzit. (Forgive me, but my only railroad knowledge is to stay off the tracks when a train is coming!)
Mating Thingys. In the spring all fancies turn to procreation.
Another view of the Thingys mating ritual.
What the Thingys mate with.
A Loud & Noisy.
Yellow-crested Chummy.
What the Yellow-crested Chummy looks like just before it lands on your head.

Captain Neil Olsen and Chief Officer Richard Miller took time out from a hectic spring fitout to give us a tour of the Algomarine. Our thanks to these two Seamen.
What it’s all about – a view into the cargo hold.
Another view into the hold.
Looking athwart ships under the hatch crane.
The hatch crane mechanism – chain drive.
Some of the deck crew preparing the ship for the season at the after end of the forward house.
View down the deck.
Captain Olsen and Jason Rimmer of the Risley discussing things nautical.
The forward console with telegraph and bow-thruster controls.
The steering position and one of the radars.
Mk 37 Gyro compass, navigation light panel and the coffee pot!
Discussing the new electronic chart gizmo.
Another view along the deck.
Part of the main engine. 6 cylinder Sulzer.
The rest of the main engine.
Looking aft over the engine.
Yet another view of the engine.
You know that door that people look out of from the engine room? This is it! Fitted with a comfy wooden leaning shelf. The shipping companies spend considerable time and money to find and train the Leaners. They have no function on board other than to watch you watching them. Honest! Part of the steering gear.
One of the 3 messes on board, with the galley in the background.
Looking forward on the main deck.
The business end of the unloader.
Boomathaurus. Not yet as rare as the Lake Michigan whale.
Another view looking forward.
Looking aft.

Reported by: Paul Beesley

Today in Great Lakes History - April 03

On April 3, 1991 the pilothouse of the WILLIAM CLAY FORD (1) was moved by barge towed by Gaelic tug's CAROLYN HOEY and placed on a specially built foundation at the Dossin Museum for display facing the Detroit River as a fully equipped pilot house.

LIQUILASSIE was launched April 3, 1943 as a) TEMBLADOR.

On 3 April 1872, the passenger/package freight steam barge ROBERT HOLLAND was launched at Marine City, MI. She was towed to Detroit by the propeller TRADER to have her machinery installed.

On 3 April 1876, the Port Huron Times reported "The wreck of the schooner HARMONICA, which has been missing for a month or more, has been discovered on the beach near Whitehall completely buried in the ice. Four are supposed to have perished."

On 3 April 1894, WILLIAM H. BARNUM (wooden propeller freighter, 219', 937 gt, built in 1873 at Detroit, MI) was carrying corn on her first trip of the season. She was reportedly in poor condition and was insured only for this voyage. Her hull was cut by floating ice and she sank about two miles east of present Mackinac Bridge. The tug CRUSADER got her crew off before she sank.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection and the Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

First Footer Departs

The first 1000-footer departed Bay Ship Sturgeon Bay early Tuesday morning. As the thick fog cleared, The Columbia Star departed her lay-up berth at Bay Ship. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mobil Bay was working the ice in upper Green Bay and will escort the Columbia Star to Escanaba Mi. for her first load of the season.

The Charles M. Beeghly is expected to depart Tuesday evening also for Escanaba, following in the track of the Columbia Star and the Mobil Bay.

Bow eases out.
Stern out of berth.
Heading out bound in heavy Fog.

Reported by: Vic DeLarwelle

Southdown Conquest Opens Grand Haven

The Southdown Conquest and Susan W. Hannah open the 2003 cement trade in Grand Haven Monday. At 3 p.m. they were unloading at the cement silos in Ferrysburg.

Reported by: Dan McNeil and Dale Rosema

Radisson Downbound

The Pierre Radisson was downbound in the Seaway Tuesday passing Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin as she heads for Straits of Belle Isle for escort duty. Radisson is apparently going to the lower St. Lawrence to escort supply vessels.

The Radisson was upbound for the Lake Erie over the weekend but her schedule was changed. It is unknown if she will return upbound this season, but it is unlikely.

Radisson downbound at the Iroquois Lock.
Paul Martin secure above Iroquois Lock awaiting upbound traffic.
Another view.
Pierre Radisson passing Paul Martin.
Regina Oldendorff clearing Lock upbound .

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Ojibway Operating under New Owners

The Sault Ste. Marie based supply boat Ojibway has fit out for the new season after the sale of the Soo Warehouse early this year left her future in question. In January Great Lakes Transportation, owner of the Great Lakes Fleet, confirmed the sale of the operation. The property ­ and the supply boat Ojibway ­were sold to MCM Marine, which operates an adjacent small drydock.

The Soo Evening News reported Tuesday that the Soo Warehouse is operating under new ownership, the company is called Soo Marine Supply. The newspaper reported that Soo Marine Supply was formed by a group of investors to continue the century-old ship chandlery business on Sault Harbor.

Assistant manager Ralph Ray told the Soo Evening News that MCM and Soo Marine Supply have entered a leasing arrangement for the warehouse property and supply boat that will allow the company to continue supplying ships from two lines, Great Lakes Fleet and Interlake Steamship. The earlier warehouse operation also served the two U.S. fleets.

Ray said the new company offers the two shipping lines the same line of products supplied under Great Lakes Fleet ownership. He added that the new operation has hired back a number of older warehouse employees idled at the end of the last shipping season, when the MCM deal was completed.

Reported by: Ed Schipper and Andy Severson

McKee Sons Starts Season

Tuesday afternoon the McKee Sons was upbound in the Welland Canal, on its way to load at the Port Colborne stone dock. The barge and tug Invincible are slated to load stone for Erie. The John D Leitch left Wharf 6 in Thorold on Tuesday and headed upbound from its lay-up berth.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Twin Ports Report

The harbor continues to come back to life this week. Walter J. McCarthy Jr. backed out of its layup berth about 7 a.m. Tuesday and proceeded to Midwest Energy Terminal to load. Sometime during the night, Cason J. Callaway backed out of the drydock in Fraser Shipyards, to be replaced by John G. Munson. Crewmen aboard Kaye E. Barker took the shutters off her pilothouse and observation room Tuesday morning as that vessel prepares to leave Fraser Shipyards today to load coal at Midwest Energy Terminal destined for Marquette.

Reported by: Al Miller

Milwaukee Update

The Marine Management tug Nicole S. arrived in Milwaukee Monday with three grain barges from Chicago. The larger John M. Selvick is normally on this run.

The balance of the Stewart J. Cort's crew began arriving Monday with fitout starting on Tuesday morning. The Cort should be departing on Thursday.

Nicole S.
Looking past the Nicole S. to the Cort.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde

Alpena Update

The J.A.W Iglehart was seen anchored in a somewhat foggy Thunder Bay (off Alpena) Tuesday afternoon. It was waiting for the tug Jacklyn M and barge Integrity to arrive in the area. It is possible that the Iglehart may take a cargo of cement from the Integrity and then go on to its next destination. Monday the Integrity became stuck in the ice 7 miles east of Lansing Shoal. Early Monday morning they were waiting for the Iglehart to come and lighten the barge.

The steamer Alpena is due into port early Wednesday morning to load cement for Heron Bay, ON. Unless orders change, this will be the Alpena's first trip to the locks and Lake Superior for this season.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain and Dan McNeil

Toronto Update

English River got under way Monday night for her first trip of the season.

The Spruceglen continues to fitting out and was lit up brightly Tuesday morning. The charter boat Yankee Lady III shifted from her winter berth in the Turning Basin next to the Cherry St. Bridge, to her summer berth at Pier 28, sometime over the past two days.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Kingston Update

A sure sign of spring is the first trip by the English River to Bath, to load cement. She was eastbound Tuesday and expected reach Bath at 2 p.m., depending on ice conditions.

The Canadian Navigator was eastbound at Cape Vincent Tuesday morning and reported visibility of 1/4 mile in snow. The snow in the area was heavy at times.

The Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin arrived at Iroquois shortly before 11 a.m. and was remained there at 1 p.m. The three CSL fore body replacement freighters, were expected to meet Tuesday in the Seaway.

The Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin was eastbound while the CSL Niagara and CSL Laurentien were westbound. Navigation is still daylight hours only until lighted aids are placed.

The Regina Oldendorff was expected to be the first westbound vessel past Cape Vincent on Tuesday.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Toledo City Docks Lay-up

Buckeye and Museum Ship Willis B. Boyer.
View from the dock.
Stern view.
Is this the Museum Ship entrance?.
Museum Ship Willis B. Boyer at sunset.
Buckeye bow at sunset.

Reported by: Bob Densic

Samuel Risley Keeping Busy

On March 26 the Welland canal was opened for a special passage of the Canadian Enterprise. This allowed the Enterprise to carry a desperately needed load of coal to an electricity generating station on Lake Ontario.

Canadian Enterprise downbound below lock 1, Welland Canal.
Downbound from Lock 1, Welland Canal. The Canal was opened to allow the Enterprise to make a special trip downbound. Therefore the Enterprise was the first ship downbound in the Welland Canal in 2003.
Another view.

On March 26 the Risley escorted the Canadian Progress from Port Colborne to Ashtabula. Once this escort was complete the Risley picked up the Algowood near Long Point and escorted her to Sarnia.
Canadian Progress flashing up for start of season in Port Colborne. March 26, 2003. Shortly after this photo was taken the Risley and Progress headed out into Lake Erie.
Griffon in the Western Basin of Lake Erie. The Griffon was proceeding to Port Colborne to take over from the Risley.

March 29 saw the Samuel Risley a few miles south of Detour when orders were issued to proceed to Lake Michigan and assist the USCGC Biscayne Bay between Lansing shoals and White Shoal.

The wind was strong northerly and the B Bay’s track kept closing behind here while she was escorting 3 footers heading east. As well, the Algowood was waiting in the Mackinac Strait for an escort westward. The Risley assisted the Algowood while the Biscayne Bay continued with the footers. After midnight the wind dropped and the escorting became easier.
Capt Ralph Tucker westbound in Lake Michigan.
The Tucker’s icebreaking bow.
The Tucker’s stern.

After being released form this tasking the Samuel Risley headed toward Detour and a trip up the St Marys River.
A bottom view of Mackinac Bridge.
Another view from below the bridge.
The Mackinac bridge with CCGS Samuel Risley underneath.
A view of Mackinac Island.
Another view of Mackinac Island.
Light at Mackinac Island.

Whitefish Bay had very tough ice conditions, even for the Risley. Unfortunately it was after dark so no photos were possible. Should there be strong westerlies and northerlies for a few days Whitefish Bay may become nearly impassable.

The Eastern 2/3’s of Lake Superior also have very heavy ice. With the appropriate wind, commercial ships may require escorts through this area.

On March 31 CCGS Samuel Risley arrived in Thunder Bay for harbour breakout. The ice outside the break walls is between 2 and 3 feet thick and still very stiff as the temperatures remain below freezing.

The Risley cleared the ice around Keefer terminal and Pool 7a so the Atlantic Erie could move this afternoon. She then broke out the North end of the harbour and the Kam River, as well as a turning basin outside the break walls.

The Atlantic Erie moved to Pool 7a about 7 PM, the first commercial move of the year in Thunder Bay.
Thunder Bay. Algomarine and Atlantic Erie in lay-up.
The Pineglen after successful removal of her self-unloading gear over the winter. The company insists that the $10 million job was well worth the price as they have unlimited work for an older straight-decker. My contribution to the April 1st shenanigans.
Track in the ice.
Aft section of Pineglen.
Atlantic Erie and Algomarine astern.
Thunder Bay. A view of the Atlantic Erie and Algomarine over the deck of the Pineglen.
Bow of the Pineglen.
Straight-on view of Pineglen.
Your intrepid reporter.
Bow of Atlantic Erie.
Another view of the bow of the Atlantic Erie showing a patch just below the name.
Fore end of Algomarine.
Aft end of Algomarine.
Stern view of the Pineglen.
North Thunder Bay, Canadian Transfer, Canadian Olympic, Algontario and Algoma boat in drydock.
Canadian Transfer.
Atlantic Erie turning into Pool 7A. The first commercial move in Thunder Bay this year.
Atlantic Erie in the snow and gathering dark. 2003-10-d-38-atlantic-erie.jpg

Reported by: Paul Beesley

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Today in Great Lakes History - April 02

On April 2, 1951 CLIFFS VICTORY was towed, bound for New Orleans, LA, with her deck houses, stack, propeller, rudder and above deck fittings stored on or below her spar deck for bridge clearance. She was outfitted with two 120 foot pontoons, which were built at the Baltimore yard, that were attached to her hull at the stern to reduce her draft to eight feet for passage in the shallow sections of the river/canal system.

LEON FALK, JR was launched April 2, 1945 as a) WINTER HILL, a T2-SE-Al World War II single screw fuel tanker for U.S. Maritime Commission.

CLIFFORD F. HOOD was launched April 2, 1902 as the straight deck Bulk Freighter a) BRANSFORD.

The SENATOR OF CANADA sailed under her own power on April 2, 1985 to Toronto, Ont. where she was put into ordinary next to her fleet mate the QUEDOC (2). She was later scrapped in Venezuela.

The WHEAT KING was lengthened by an addition of a 172'6" mid-section (Hull #61) and received a 1000 hp bow thruster. This work reportedly cost $3.8 million Cdn and was completed on April 2, 1976.

On April 2, 1953, the J.L. Mauthe (now Pathfinder (3) entered service.

April 2, 1975 - The State of Michigan filed a Federal Court suit to stop the Grand Trunk Railway from selling GRAND RAPIDS. It was felt that selling the ferry would build a stronger case for abandonment of the entire ferry service.

On 2 April 1874, A.H. HUNTER (wooden propeller tug, 58', 28 gt) was launched at Saginaw, MI. She was built for Donnelly & Clark of Saginaw by Wheeler. The engine was built by Bartlett & Co. of Saginaw. Her boiler and some other equipment were from the almost new tug KATY REID that burned at Salzburg, MI in October 1873.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Jody Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

45th Seaway Shipping Season Underway

The bulk freighter Regina Oldendorff, under charter to Fednav Limited, eased into the St. Lambert lock on Monday morning, ushering in the Seaway's 2003 shipping season. Guy Véronneau, outgoing President and CEO of The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC), was joined at the opening ceremony by his successor, Richard Corfe, and by their American counterpart, Albert Jacquez, Administrator of the U.S. Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation. Other speakers included Richard LeHir, President of the Shipping Federation of Canada, and Don Morrison, President of the Canadian Shipowners Association (CSA). The Shipping Federation and the CSA are both celebrating their 100th anniversaries this year.

The Seaway, opened in 1959 by Queen Elizabeth and U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower, was commercialized in 1998 under a 20-year agreement with the federal government, which remains the owner of all the Seaway assets. Guy Véronneau was the SLSMC's first President and CEO, with the mandate to oversee the operation and maintenance of the Canadian side of the waterway. Mr. Véronneau retires today after successfully guiding the new Corporation through its first 5-year business plan, meeting or exceeding all performance targets.

His successor is Richard Corfe, who has held various executive positions with the Seaway over a period of some 20 years. A member of the Corporate Management Committee since 1995, Mr. Corfe became Vice-President of Maisonneuve Region in 2000, and Corporate Process Leader for Infrastructure Maintenance, responsible for all engineering standards, systems and planning.

Over 44 consecutive shipping seasons and the passage of more than two billion tonnes of cargo through its locks, the Seaway has continually upgraded its facilities and services. As Richard Corfe notes, "We are always looking to harness technology to improve customer service, and a lot of innovative tools have been implemented since commercialization. My predecessor, Guy Véronneau, laid a strong foundation during his 5 years in office for a Seaway that will continue to serve as an efficient trade artery. We will remain very conscious of the need to provide cost-effective services on a safe and reliable waterway to our shipping clients."

On April 1, the SLSMC will begin its second 5-year mandate with a smaller executive team and agreement on a new Business Plan which projects increases in revenues and manageable costs of some 14% each. This places the Corporation in a sound position to handle upcoming challenges, particularly since the collective agreement with Seaway unionized employees has been extended to March 31, 2005, and there are signs of a rebound in traffic volumes in a number of key sectors, including steel and other bulk shipping.

In addition, Transport Canada has agreed to inject an extra $45 million into system maintenance over the next five years, bringing the total to $170 million, in recognition of the increasing demands of an infrastructure that is now 43+ years old (the current Welland Canal portion of the Seaway has been in operation since 1932). This investment will provide a much needed boost to a transportation artery that is energy efficient, environmentally sound, and a key source of competitive advantage to a wide range of industries within North America's heartland.

The Seaway gains an important tool in 2003 to improve its competitive edge, as it becomes the largest inland waterway in the world to implement Automatic Identification System (AIS) technology, a world-wide standard approved by the International Maritime Organization. Carriage of AIS transponders becomes mandatory today for all commercial traffic on the Seaway.

Supporting the Seaway's commitment to improving efficiency and customer service is the binational Web site. A repository of shipping regulations, information and e-business applications, the Web site is used by tens of thousands of customers and researchers every month.

With an eye to the future, the SLSMC is looking forward to participating in two studies with Transport Canada. The Marine Navigation Services Study will consider what means are available to streamline the provision of marine service by multiple government agencies to shipping in the St. Lawrence Seaway Great Lakes System. The SLSMC will also participate in the binational Great Lakes Navigation Review, which begins this year with a baseline review, to determine how existing Seaway channels and structures could be enhanced to maximize their value to all stakeholders in the 21st century.

Picture by Kent Malo
The first commercial vessel up the St. Lawrence Seaway for the season the Regina Oldendorff at the St. Lambert Lock.
Close up.
Close up of the bow as the Birchglen, second vessel up the Seaway enter the lock at St. Lambert.
Birchglen in position in the lock.

Algocape Opens Welland Canal

Monday morning Algoma's Algocape opened the shipping season on the Welland Canal. The traditional presentation of a top hat took place inside the Lock 3 Visitors Center about 10 a.m. The Captain of the Algocape was presented with the top hat for taking the first vessel through the canal.

This year marks the historic Welland Canals 174th consecutive year in operation through four canals that have transported national and international commerce since the first canal opened in 1829.

Algocape upbound.
Close up.
Stern view.
At Lock 3.
Flags flying.
Captain of the Algocape.

Reported by: Alex Howard

Saginaw Arrives in Marquette

The Saginaw reached the ore dock in Marquette Monday morning to take on a load. If she encounters no more problems with the ice, she will make a quick trip to Algoma and then return to Marquette. The Great Lakes Trader is expected in Marquette on the Wednesday.

The Saginaw became stuck in the ice on her way into Marquette on Sunday night. The Sundew went out to help her in and also got stuck . Both had to wait for the Mackinaw to break them out of the ice.

The Mackinaw departed about 4 p.m. breaking a track back to the Soo. Mackinaw while work the track in Whitefish Bay after escorting the Saginaw.

Pictures by Lee Rowe
Saginaw at the dock.
Another view.
Mackinaw in the lower harbor.
Close up.
Flag raised.

Reported by: Lee Rowe and Chad Michaels

Risley Breaks Out Thunder Bay

The Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Samuel Risley arrived in Thunder Bay Monday morning. The Risley made short work of the thick ice around the harbor despite the snowy conditions.

  The Atlantic Erie  departed her winter lay-up berth at Keefer Terminals after having extensive internal steel work done. She was loading in port Monday and is expected to leave Thunder Bay on Wednesday with a load of grain.

  The Pineglen will also sail with a load of grain headed for Quebec. She was laid up at Keefer Terminals and is to shift to Saskatchewan Wheat Pool 7a Tuesday afternoon.

  The third vessel to leave Keefer will be the Algomarine. She is to load at Thunder Bay Terminals on Thursday morning.

Risley breaking ice.
Another view.
Atlantic Erie ready to move.
Erie underway.

Reported by: Dan Turk

Tug and Barge Dry Docked

The Tug Escort II and the tug Bayship were assisting the tug Rebecca Lynn and her petroleum barge in Sturgeon Bay on Monday. The tug and barge were placed on the dry dock for survey and repairs.

Rebecca Lynn and barge.
Tug Rebecca Lynn.
Tug Bay Ship.

Reported by: Orrin Royce

Twin Ports Report

Frontenac, the Twin Ports' first vessel of the season, finished unloading salt overnight Sunday and was out on the lake Monday morning cleaning its holds. It was due next at BNSF ore dock to load taconite pellets for Hamilton, Ontario.

Midwest Energy Terminal began its season Monday by loading the James R. Barker, which spent the winter at the dock. The terminal is getting off to a fast start this season, with one or more vessels scheduled every day during its first week of shipping. Walter J. McCarthy Jr. departs its layup dock today to load coal at the dock. Kaye E. Barker and Canadian Progress are scheduled for April 2, followed by Canadian Olympic, April 3; Paul R. Tregurtha, April 4; James R. Barker, April 5; and Columbia Star and Algolake, April 6.

Duluth's DMIR ore dock is scheduled to begin the season April 4 with Mesabi Miner. Other vessels scheduled are Cason J. Callaway, arriving April 10 with stone; James R. Barker, April 11; and Edwin H. Gott, April 13.

At the DMIR in Two Harbors, Roger Blough, Edwin H. Gott, Joe Block and Presque Isle were are all due Monday. Close on their heels today are to be Edgar B. Speer this morning and Arthur M. Anderson arriving from Superior later in the day.

The Twin Ports' first grain ship of the season may be Spruceglen. The vessel is scheduled to arrive Friday.

Reported by: Al Miller

Erie. PA. Update

The first vessel of the year is expected to be the McKee Sons, which made its last visit to Erie in 1993. The McKee Sons will be on its first trip of the year and will bring stone to Erie. According to an article in the Erie Times News, the McKee Sons was to have arrived last week, but the postponement of the opening of the Welland Canal delayed her.

Neah Bay at docked in Erie.
Another view.

Reported by: Jeff Thoreson

Toronto News

The Algocape departed Toronto early Monday morning and headed for the Welland Canal. It is expected that Spruceglen will be the next departure. The ferry Ongiara went on Toronto Drydock Monday.

Reported by: Gerry O.

Kingston Update

The Cedarglen was eastbound Monday afternoon. She encountered some slushy ice between Wolfe Island and Cape Vincent. It was wet of Lynda Island and extended for about one mile. She had no difficulty passing through it. Monday night she was still in the Seaway Clayton zone and not east of Crossover Island.

The Stephen B. Roman passed the False Duck Island and was going to anchor presumably to await the departure of the CSL Tadoussac from Picton.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Radio Message

Seaway Radio Message #2 - 2003 Opening
As of 0001 hour April 15, the maximum permissible draft of 79.2 decimetres (26'0") in the Montreal-Lake Ontario section of the Seaway will be increased to 80.0 decimetres (26'3") conditional on favorable water levels. This draft will remain in effect until December 15 or until such time as changing water levels necessitate a draft reduction, whichever occurs first.

A deteriorating ice cover exists in the South Shore Canal above Lock 2, on Lake St. Louis, in the Beauharnois Canal, in the Wiley-Dondero Canal and in Lake St. Lawrence. The eastern end of Lake St. Francis is covered with heavy ice with broken tracks. The international section of the St. Lawrence River is generally open water, except for a thick ice cover from Clayton to Carleton Island and at the entrance to Lake Ontario.

Navigation will be restricted to daylight hours until the commissioning of lighted aids has been completed. Further information concerning this is available from the appropriate traffic control centre. Mariners are warned to exercise extreme caution in the use of winter markers as the position of the markers may have been affected by ice. Icebreakers are continuing to break ice in the Montreal-Lake Ontario section. Icebreaker assistance is available. It will be extremely important that vessels transiting through all ice covered areas and the ice booms in the Beauharnois Canal and in the Prescott-Ogdensburg area to proceed at the slowest safe speed in order not to disturb the ice fields. The Galop and Prescott-Ogdensburg ice booms have been removed from the navigation channel.

The maximum permissible draft in the Welland Canal will be 80dm (26'3") for the duration of the navigation season, unless changing water levels on Lake Ontario necessitate a draft reduction. Both sides of the flight locks are in operation. The Welland Canal is open water. Mariners are cautioned that, at present, heavy ice conditions exist on Lake Erie, especially in the eastern end of the lake. Ice-breaker assistance is available.

Reported by: Ron Walsh

Today in Great Lakes History - April 01

The a) STEWART J. CORT was commissioned on April 1,1972.

In April 1965, the J.A. CAMPBELL was renamed c) BUCKEYE MONITOR.

Realizing that the bulk trades were too competitive, Captain John Roen's Roen Transportation Co. sold the CAPTAIN JOHN ROEN to the American Steamship Co. (Boland & Cornelius, mgr.) on April 1, 1947 for $915,000.

The ROY A. JODREY started her first full season opening navigation at the Soo Locks April 1, 1966 with a load of stone for Algoma Steel.

Dismantling of the G.A. TOMLINSON (2) began on April 1, 1980 and was Completed eight months later in December.

April 1, 1903 - Gus Kitzinger of the Pere Marquette Line Steamers, acquired the PERE MARQUETTE 3 & 4 from the Pere Marquette Railway Co.

Sailors at Chicago went on strike on 1 April 1871 for an increase in pay. They were getting $1.50 a day. Some ship owners offered $1.75 but when word came that the Straits of Mackinac were clear of ice, the sailors demanded the unheard of daily wage of $3.25. Although some ships stayed in port, the $1.75 wage was accepted and the barks MARY PEREW, J.G. MASTEN and C.J. WELLS, along with the schooners DONALDSON, PATHFINDER and CHAMPION set sail on 1 April 1871.

On 1 April 1904, CONDOR (2-mast wooden schooner, 58', 22 gt, built in 1871 at Sheboygan, WI), while lying at anchor in the Kalamazoo River at Singapore, MI, was crushed by ice moving out in the Spring breakup.

Data from: Joe Barr, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history

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