Archives for April 2004

McCarthy loads coal for Detroit Edison

The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. arrived Duluth to load coal
The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. arrived last night to load coal for a Detroit Edison power plant. Its original name was Belle River but it was changed to the current name in the spring of 1990, when Mr. McCarthy retired from his position as Chairman of the Board of Detroit Edison. Mr. McCarthy and his wife still make a trip on the boat every year.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/30/2004

Fodas Pescadores here from China

The Taiwanese owned and Panamanian flagged Fodas Pescadores has been loading wheat for Italy and should depart today, weather permitting. The vessel’s captain and chief engineer are from Taiwan while the other officers and crew live in mainland China. There are a total of 17 on board.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/29/2004

Columbia Star here for coal

columbiastar211021-143The Columbia Star (now the American Century) made 33 trips to the Twin Ports last year. On 32 of those trips, she loaded coal for lower lakes ports in the US and Canada. On her last trip of the season, last January, she loaded taconite. She is 1,000 feet long.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/28/2004


Great Lakes Trader & Joyce L. Van Enkevort

greatlakestrader201109-124The self-unloading barge Great Lakes Trader is here to load taconite. The tug Joyce L. Van Enkevort, with an elevated pilot house, connects to the barge and provides the power to the vessel. It was here 22 times last year (2003).
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/27/2004

Stewart J. Cort, first thousand footer

The Stewart J. Cort was launched in 1972 at Erie, Pennsylvania. Its bow and stern were built in Mississippi and welded together. This ‘vessel’ then sailed to Erie where the two pieces were split apart and a midbody was inserted between them. All parts were then welded together, creating the first 1,000 footer on the Great Lakes.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/26/2004

Veerseborg here for grain

The Dutch flagged Veerseborg is here to load grain. At 433 feet, she is shorter than most ocean going boats that come here. She carries a crew of only nine. Bigger ships that come here have crews of 20 or more.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/25/2004

Mesabi Miner returns to Duluth

The Mesabi Miner was christened at the Port Terminal in Duluth in 1977. Muriel Humphrey broke the bottle of champagne over her bow, and Senator Humphrey gave a speech. Then thousands of red, white and blue balloons came out of the boat’s cargo holds.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/24/2004

Federal Schelde loads wheat

The Federal Schelde has been loading wheat in Duluth since it came into port on Wednesday afternoon. It should leave this afternoon for Antwerp, Belgium.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/23/2004

CSL Laurentien here

The CSL Laurentien is most of the former Louis R Desmarais with a new forward hull attached to the engine room portion of the Desmarais.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/22/2004

Sarah Spencer, named for owner’s son and daughter

The owner of the tug barge combination, referred to as the Sarah Spencer (above and also loading taconite in Superior today), has a daughter named Sarah and a son named Spencer. The name of the tug is the Jane Ann, which also happens to be the name of his wife.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/21/2004

Marilis T. (now Ocean Leader)

The Marilis T should arrive today and go to anchor waiting to load grain. It was not here last year but made three trips in 2001. She was built in 1984 and is owned by the Teo Shipping Corp in Piraeus, Greece.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/20/2004

Research vessel Lake Guardian in Duluth

The Lake Guardian departed Duluth last year on April 25 (above), with ice still in the harbor. The EPA operated vessel is on the first of its two Great Lakes water sampling surveys she takes each year. It can support up to 27 scientists on board performing numerous scientific investigations relating to water quality.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/19/2004

Federal Polaris to take wheat to Spain

Federal Polaris to take wheat to Spain
The Federal Polaris should complete loading wheat in Duluth today (April 18, 2004). She will take that cargo to Spain when she departs later today, weather permitting.
submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/18/2004

St. Clair taking coal to Canada

The St. Clair was built primarily to deliver coal from Superior to Detroit Edison’s Belle River Power Plant near St. Clair, MI. However, today, it is here to load coal for Ontario Power Generation at Nanticoke.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/17/2004

East wind brings ice, stops traffic

For 18 years, I have been watching the East wind blow ice into the funnel at the western end of Lake Superior known as Duluth. My office is next to the Lift Bridge. So I mesabiminor20130411_8206know. Or rather, even now, I still don’t know. I did know that Lake Superior was clear of ice and I did know there was only a small amount of ice left in the harbor.The Paul R. Tregurtha came into port Thursday morning, April 11th at 37 minutes after midnight and stopped for fuel at Calumet Fuel dock before moving over to Midwest Energy Resources in Superior to load coal. The Mesabi Miner came in about 2 hours later and stopped at the Fuel dock. She was scheduled to load iron ore at the CN dock and was waiting on the Arthur M. Anderson, which came in on Wednesday afternoon. The Mesabi Miner was the 60th vessel to use the Duluth ship canal since she was the first vessel of the season to use it on March 20th.
20130411_8226 On Thursday, the day arrived, the East wind also came to town, gusting up to 54 mph. On Friday when the Tregurtha would have been departing the port with coal, the East wind continued her attack, gusting up to 47 mph. Had you asked me, I would have told you that Lake Superior was clear of ice, and most others would have agreed. A couple weeks earlier, maybe we would have some problems. How wrong I was. I still have no idea where all the ice came from, but we do know where it ended up; going through our ice intake system at the Duluth ship canal and ice storage system in the Duluth Superior Harbor.
20130412_8272 While the Tregurtha was at the Midwest Energy Resources coal dock Friday night (April 12, 2013), they wanted a reading on the ice conditions especially in the Duluth ship canal, but elsewhere in the harbor as well. They called for tug assistance from the Great Lakes Towing Company on Friday and their tug North Carolina was out for many hours. She made it to the end of the piers but it was not easy. The Tregurtha called them off Friday evening, deciding to wait for first light on Saturday.
For some time on Friday, it was unclear whether or when the Alder would be available. They were on standby duty; crewmembers had to be called back for duty. There was some feeling Friday evening they could be underway at 6 am but they did not get away from their moorings until 10 am.
20130413_8289 Inside the harbor on Saturday morning, the Anderson, Tregurtha and Mesabi Miner were still waiting for good information about ice conditions in the Duluth ship canal. 20130413_8284Meanwhile, 3 vessels, headed for Midwest Energy, had arrived off the Duluth piers: the American Integrity, CSL Laurentien and the American Century. The ice was not an immediate problem for them since the Tregurtha was at their dock; they would be waiting somewhere.
The CSL Assiniboine and CSL Tadoussac also arrived off the Duluth piers and dropped their anchors to wait for ice conditions to clear, but more importantly, for the Anderson to clear at CN. So they too would have to wait somewhere. The Federal Welland was at anchor, but would not begin loading grain at CHS in Superior until Monday morning.
The Great Republic was on the way and entered into the conversation around 9 am Saturday morning. They had a unique situation. They were headed for Hallett #5 in West Duluth which was open for business if they could only get there. The Stewart J. Cort and the Burns Harbor were waiting off the Superior piers.
The problem in the ship canal, and with the harbor to a lesser extent, was the compression of the ice in an enclosed space such as the ship canal. When the Tregurtha moves through the ship canal, she takes up a lot of space that was previously used by water or on this day ice. If there is nowhere for the ice to go, the Tregurtha would not move. Lake Superior, it might be added, does not have this problem. She can blow her ice anywhere she wants since she has a lot of extra space, and convenient storage areas in places like the Duluth ship canal and harbor.
In the time between 9 am and 10 am Saturday morning, the Great Republic arrived off the Duluth piers and sounded like she would be coming in (under the Lift Bridge). Around the same time, the Arthur M. Anderson was moving away from the dock at CN and seemed ready to depart under the bridge.
nelsj20130413_8312 Earlier, around 8:30, the Heritage tug Nels J. had made it under the Lift Bridge and out to the Lake with some difficulty. They were called out to the Federal Welland, one of the boats at anchor off the Duluth piers. That allowed some reading of the ice in the ship canal; it was not packed solid but still troublesome. The North Carolina on Friday night and the Nels J on Saturday morning helped to loosen the ice in the ship canal. It seemed to me that the two tugs might have eased conditions enough for traffic to finally resume on Saturday morning. But 12 hours is a long, long time when you are dealing with ice and wind, and in this case more the wind. The Lake was probably not creating more ice, but no one was controlling the wind. The Coast Guard’s job is to keep the shipping channels clear for boat traffic in the harbor. They were on standby duty when approached on Friday about the problems. They then said they would be able to be out early Saturday morning, perhaps around 6 am.
Communication was a big challenge between 9 boats out in the Lake representing at least 4 shipping companies, 3 boats at docks inside, 2 tug companies and the US Coast Guard. As far as I could tell, it was pretty much a series of one to one discussions although others could listen in (that is what I was doing). Captains want to know about the ice conditions in the ship canal and the route they would take inside the harbor. Underneath that conversation was interest in what others might be doing. Who would go first? The working assumption was there would be no problem once you got to the Lake. I do not think any of the boats at anchor were stuck; they were in short term parking.
We do not have a harbormaster to make decisions regarding vessel traffic. The Paul R. Tregurtha and the Arthur M. Anderson carried the biggest burden. They were sitting at docks waiting to leave with their cargo. If they didn’t leave, there was no reason for any of the other boats to try to come in since their dock would not be available. That is one reason why the Tregurtha hired the tug. They were at the Midwest Energy coal dock, loaded and ready to leave.
Since the whole icy adventure came as a sudden surprise to everyone after strong east winds seemed to blow what little ice was left in Lake Superior into the Duluth ship canal and harbor, no one had a good hold on how severe the problem was. Of course, no captain wanted to get their boat stuck but there was also a lot of comment about not getting stuck under the Lift Bridge. Among other things, that would have cut off the connection between Canal Park and Park Point. And so, around 9 am on Saturday morning, it started to get interesting. A half hour earlier, the tug Nels J made it through the Duluth ship canal. The Great Republic was thinking about coming right in. The Arthur M. Anderson began to move. As it got close to 10, with the Anderson just about to make the turn into the harbor, the Alder finally began to move away from her dock. I was looking out my window and to my amazement, saw open water. It was almost as if the ice sensed pressure from all sides and decided to give up the fight. The Alder wanted to make a couple circles in the harbor to break up more ice, but with the Anderson on the way, the Alder turned toward the bridge, and the open water under it. She did not have any problem; in fact, the problem itself seem to literally float away.
The Alder went under the Lift Bridge at 10:17 on Saturday morning, April 13, 2013.
And then …
Arthur M. Anderson departed at 10:31
Kaye E. Barker left at 11:36
Paul R. Tregurtha left at 11:49
Stewart J. Cort came in Superior 11:53
Great Republic came in Duluth at 12:21
American Integrity at 12:44
CSL Laurentien at 1:07
Federal Welland at 3:53
American Century in at 7:43
With the Mesabi Miner departure at 9:57, the CSL Assiniboine came in Saturday night at 11:19 to take her place at the CN dock.
For a while at least, we were back to normal.

Ziemia Gornoslaska in from anchor

The Ziemia Gornoslaska has been at anchor since Thursday afternoon. It made one trip here last year. Owned by the Polish Steamship Company, it was built in 1992 as the Ziemia Gornoslaska. After sailing 11 years as the Lake Charles, it is back with the original name.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/16/2004

Gordon C. Leitch in town

The Gordon C. Leitch will be making only her 13th visit to the Twin Ports since 1996 today. She was called the Ralph Misener when she was first launched in 1968.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/15/2004

Algosteel loads coal

The Algosteel should be here today to load coal. It hasn’t been in the Twin Ports since 2000 when she visited three times.It was here 14 times in 1996.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/14/2004

Algosoo with salt

Algoma Central is located at Sault Ste Marie, Ontario. Their boat, the Algosoo, arriving today with salt, was named for the company and its location.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/13/2004

Montrealais in Duluth to discharge cement

The Montrealais was here twice last year. It is here today with a cargo of cement. It is still powered by the original steam engine installed when it was built in 1962,
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/12/2004

Armco brings limestone to Duluth

The Armco (now the American Valor) should be here today to discharge limestone. Built in 1953, it was only here four times last year, bringing limestone in twice and departing with taconite three times.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/11/2004

Kapitonas Andzejauskas 1st salt water ship

The Kapitonas Andzejauskas will be the first ocean ship to come to Duluth this season. Built in 1978 in Ukraine, it was here twice last year. This Lithuanian flagged ship will be loading grain.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-10-2004

Kapitonas Andzejauskas: First saltwater ship of 2004

Arrived: April 10, 2004 at 4:40 pm
Lithuanian ships usually fly Lithuanian flags. Unfortunately for John and Birute Tribys, there were no Lithuanians on board. The home port of the Kapitonas Andzejauskas is Klaipeda, a Lithuanian port on the Baltic Sea. The arrival of this Lithuanian ship attracted the attention of the Tribys. They live in Wisconsin but came up to Superior to check out the ship. When I arrived for the welcome party, they came over to my car and introduced themselves. Birute pointed to the name “Klaipeda” on the stern of the ship and said, “That is where we were born.” She was quite excited. Later, when we found that John was a good singer and sang the Lithuanian national anthem, he was happy to open the party with a robust version of the song, and we all showed him our appreciation.
The CHS grain facility loaded 10,150 metric tons of wheat destined for Italy.

Click here for more about the Kapitonas Andzejauskas

Herbert C. Jackson gets coal for Marquette

Built in 1959, the Herbert C. Jackson will be here today to load coal for Marquette, Michigan, on the south shore of Lake Superior.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/9/2004

Halifax the boat named after Halifax the city

The Canadian flagged Halifax will be here to load taconite today. It was here fifteen times last year loading the same cargo. It is named for the capital of Nova Scotia, Canada.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/8/2004

Edgar B. Speer departs Duluth

The Edgar B. Speer was in Duluth on Tuesday. She departed Duluth (above) for Two Harbors in the afternoon. There is no traffic expected at the Duluth entry today.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/7/2004

Michipicoten in Duluth

The Canadian flagged Michipicoten is loading taconite in Superior today. She is the former US flagged Elton Hoyt 2nd. As the Hoyt, she sat idle in Superior from 2000 until last April, when she was purchased by Lower Lakes Towing and renamed.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/6/2004

Canadian Olympic

Above, the Canadian Olympic arrives in Duluth on January 14th this year. That is the latest a Canadian boat has come to Duluth in a shipping season since 1997. Like today, it was here to load coal.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/5/2004

First trip here as American Spirit

The American Spirit is here today loading taconite. It is the first visit for this boat using this name. She has been here many times before as the George A. Stinson as in the above photo taken July 31, 2002.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/4/2004

Middletown is a historic boat

The Middletown (now American Victory) was built in 1942. It saw duty in both the Atlantic and the Pacific during World War 2 as a tanker. It was hit by a Japanese bomb in 1944. Since then, it has been renamed several times, rebuilt and lengthened. It was here 12 times last year, usually, as today, discharging limestone.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/3/2004

Former Paterson here as the Pineglen

The Pineglen arrived in the Twin Ports on Thursday to load grain. She visited here many times when she sailed as the Paterson. When Paterson & Sons went out of the shipping business in 2002, she was sold to Canada Steamship Lines and renamed.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/2/2004

Canadian Miner brings cement to Duluth

The Canadian Miner was here twice last year to load grain. She is due today to discharge a cargo of cement. She was built in 1966 in Montreal and is 730 feet long. (She was sold for scrap in 2011 and while being towed to Turkey, she went aground off the coast of Nova Scotia.)
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 4/1/2004