I left off with my photos from Engineer’s Day on Friday, June 26. I stayed in the Soo for the rest of the weekend, and saw some more action.
I went to the lower pier of the locks to watch her exit – but she isn’t the only one.
Next, I headed to the Tower of History, a viewing tower with sweeping views of the city, lower approach, and the Soo Locks. In this panoramic shot, you can see Paul R. Tregurtha heading downbound, passing the upbound St. Clair.
I had to zoom way in to get this shot – a little blurry, but not bad. The Coast Guard Station is in the foreground – USCGC Katmai Bay is docked on the right, and the buoy tender Buckthorn is on the left.
After watching the Burns Harbor exit the Poe Lock, I headed to a spot above the locks to watch the St. Clair. But there was a chain link fence there – a photographer’s worst nightmare. I stood atop a picnic table to get this shot over the annoying fence.
Next, I headed back below the locks and stopped at the MCM Marine yard to see what was going on, where I found the G-tug Florida, built in 1926, on a floating drydock. Florida is unique among her fleetmates because of her Kort nozzle, which channels water for better propeller efficiency and can be rotated to steer the tug. Most of the G-tugs have the normal propeller-rudder configuration, so I found this interesting. She is on drydock undergoing a major overhaul, which will greatly lengthen her career. 14 of her fleetmates are also being overhauled around the upper lakes. For more information on the overhaul program, visit this post on the Great Lakes Group’s blog.
That was all the boatwatching I did on Saturday. I left late Sunday morning, but not before catching a few more ships.
The first ship of the day Sunday was Algoma Mariner, upbound below the locks. This was my first meeting with her, as she only recently began coming to the upper lakes. She and a few Algoma fleetmates had been running ore on the eastern St. Lawrence, until they were replaced earlier this season by Algoma Integrity.
She is a new ship herself, having arrived on the Lakes from her builders in China last summer. She is the second ship in Algoma’s Equinox Class, which will eventually consist of eight vessels. The shipyard in China where they are being built, Nantong Mingde Heavy Industries, is experiencing some financial troubles, and are behind on their construction.
That was all from Engineer’s Weekend. But, I still have some catching up to do, as I have done other boatwatching this summer. I’ll have another post within the next week!