Archives for October 2007

Canadian Prospector

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The bulk freighter Canadian Prospector came into port on Monday morning to load grain. It has been here 36 times since 1996 but the last visit was in October of 2004. It was built in 1964 as an ocean going freighter named Carlton and was lengthened in 1968 by 80 feet and renamed St. Lawrence Prospector. It was lengthened again in 1979 by 88 feet and given its current name. It is now 730 feet long. Above, the vessel is departing Duluth in July, 2002. [Canadian Prospector was scrapped in 2010.]
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-31-2007

Earl W. Oglebay in Silver Bay

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The Earl W. Oglebay should be here today to load sinter at the CN dock in West Duluth. Last August, the ship was sold by Oglebay Norton to Wisconsin and Michigan Steamship Company in Lakewood, Ohio. Most of the other boats that Oglebay Norton sold received a new name immediately. A note on the web says that the Oglebay part of this boat’s name was painted over last winter. If nothing else was added, it may be sailing in here as the Earl W. or at least the paint job may say that. Above, the Earl W. Oglebay is at the dock in Silver Bay the day after Christmas in 2002. The picture was taken from the deck of the Oglebay Norton, now called the American Integrity. It is departing Silver Bay after discharging coal it brought up the day before and returning to Duluth to load more coal. Photo taken on December 25, 2002.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-30-2007

Vista King visits 2 mature ladies

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Yesterday was one of the last days of summer. The Vista Fleet was out in the harbor for their final cruises this season. Captain Amanda Porter (above) was at the wheel of the Vista King late Sunday afternoon, positioning the boat so her passengers could get a better look as the Alpena was discharging cement at the Lafarge dock in Superior. The Alpena is on the outside, next to the J.A.W. Iglehart. The Iglehart is in long term layup at the dock. In past years, it visited Duluth 4 or 5 times a year. This was the Alpena’s 14th visit of the season, discharging cement on every trip. Photo taken on October 28, 2007. [The Vista King is no longer in service in Duluth.]
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-29-2007

Jumbo Spirit gets frequent sailing miles

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The Jumbo Spirit loaded a reactor vessel in Japan and came directly to Duluth to discharge it. That is the cylinder on the right side in the picture above looking into the ship’s hold. The object at the left, a transformer, was to be discharged in Toledo, a port they passed right by on the way here. The shipper (who pays the freight) for the reactor vessel wanted the trip to be direct to Duluth with no stops for any other cargo. As you can see, the transformers (there is another one, part of which is seen at the top left) could have easily been lifted out of the ship’s hold in Toledo on the way up. It would not have been a problem to discharge the transformers on the way back either except the ship also had to load wind turbine blades in Duluth. They would need the entire cargo hold for that. So the ship left for Toledo Saturday after discharging the reactor vessel here on Friday. They will return in about a week with an empty cargo hold ready for the wind turbine blades. Duluth to Toledo to Duluth is a trip of over 1,500 miles. Photo taken on October 27, 2007.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-28-2007

CG does Jumbo inspection

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Jumbo Spirit captain Remko DeGreef (left) conferred with local Coast Guard MST 3rd class Robert Beeren (right) in the pilot house of the ship on Friday morning. (MST – Marine Science Technician). The Coast Guard was on board to conduct an extensive inspection of the ship’s major systems. This was the last job on the ship for the captain on this trip. A relief captain arrived in Duluth on Thursday evening. DeGreef flew home last night. The ship discharged equipment destined for an oil sands project in Alberta. They will depart the port today to deliver more heavy cargo in Toledo before returning to the Twin Ports to load wind turbine blades, another very unusual sequence for a salt water ship in the Great Lakes. Photo taken on October 26, 2007.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-27-2007

Federal Hudson taking wheat out

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The salt water ship Federal Hudson departed Duluth last night just as the sun was setting behind it (above). It loaded durum wheat here and will be taking that cargo to Canada, Port-Cartier, Quebec specifically. Salt water ships almost always get to the Atlantic Ocean when they depart Duluth, but Port-Cartier is still in the Gulf of St. Lawrence which opens into the Atlantic. Normally, Canadian lakers take grain to Port-Cartier and other ports above Montreal. The grain is then transferred to a salt water ship destined for Europe or Africa in most cases. Canadian lakers turn around and return to a Great Lakes port such as Duluth to pick up more or another cargo. The durum wheat that the Federal Hudson is discharging will be picked up later this season by two other Fednav ships to top off their holds before leaving for Europe.The Federal Hudson will likely get another cargo, probably grain, at another port nearby and probably take it to Europe. This does not happen very often and is likely due to a very busy season in the Great Lakes. Photo taken on October 25, 2007.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-26-2007

American Fortitude still busy

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If you like variety, the American Fortitude is the boat to be on. It carries a wide variety of cargos to a wide variety of ports. It will be here today discharging limestone it loaded in Port Inland, Michigan. It may then load coal for Ashland and then go to Silver Bay to load taconite or it may go directly to Silver Bay after it completes discharging the limestone. You get a measure of unpredictability on the American Fortitude as well. Formerly the Courtney Burton, the boat is only making its 9th appearance here this season. Last year, it was here 24 times. On most of those trips, it loaded wheat for General Mills in Buffalo. Above, as the Courtney Burton, it is departing Duluth in August, 2002.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-25-2007

Presque Isle arriving Twin Ports

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Three vessels are expected to arrive in the Twin Ports today, five will depart. One of them, the Presque Isle, will do both. It is here after delivering Two Harbors taconite to Gary, Indiana. On this trip, it will load taconite at the CN dock in West Duluth to take to Nanticoke, Ontario. This is the 17th trip the Presque Isle, a 1,000-foot long tug barge combination, has made to the Twin Ports this season. It was here 16 times last year. Above, it is coming into the Duluth entry last July 28th. Photo taken on July 28, 2007.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-24-2007

Federal Hudson is big and red

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The Federal St. Laurent came under the Lift Bridge on Sunday afternoon to load grain at the CHS terminal in Superior. This is the 11th trip here since it arrived on June 6, 1996 as a brand new, bright red ship. It is still red but with saltwater, locks and docks working away on it over the last 10 years, the bright is probably gone. The Federal Hudson is expected to arrive today for the 6th trip since it was built in 2000. Both are owned by the Fednav Group in Montreal. The Federal Hudson, like most Fednav ships, is also bright red. It has 9 sister ships in the fleet that are nearly identical. The Federal St. Laurent was built in China; the Hudson in Japan. Above, the Federal Hudson is seen arriving in Duluth in 2002 on its second trip to the Twin Ports , also its second trip here in that year.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-23-2007

Beluga Efficiency unloads

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Today is a day for 1,000 foot lakers and the salt water vessel Beluga Efficiency. The saltie came in with wind turbine parts on October 14th but then had to wait at the Port Terminal before it could move over to the AGP elevator next door to load grain. It is expected to complete loading later today and then depart the port. Above, it is at the Port Terminal on October 15th discharging wind turbines. The American Century and the Paul R. Tregurtha were expected here very early this morning. Both will be loading coal at Midwest Energy Resources in Superior. The Tregurtha, the largest boat on the Great Lakes, will be making a short trip up the North Shore to deliver the coal to Minnesota Power at Taconite Harbor. It will return mid-week to load coal for its usual destination, Detroit Edison. Photo taken on October 15, 2007.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-22-2007

Arthur M. Anderson arriving Duluth

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Boats on Lake Superior took refuge during the recent storm, some in Whitefish Bay, others off the Keweenaw. Today, some of them should be back in service. Two of them, the Arthur M. Anderson (above, arriving Duluth in 2002) and the Cason J. Callaway, are expected here with cargo to discharge. The Halifax arrived here on Thursday morning to load bentonite, but loading was delayed by the heavy rain. When wet, bentonite is very mucky so it is not loaded in the rain. However, it sits outside in a big pile before being loaded. One would think it would be a mess after a rainstorm, but it has a peculiar reaction to water. When the outside of the pile gets wet, the bentonite expands and forms a crust around the whole pile about 2 inches thick. The pile of bentonite maintains or protects itself in the rain, a very nice property to the workers at the Hallett Dock. That characteristic also makes it valuable in situations where a sealant or an impermeable barrier is needed such as the bottom of a landfill so that waste material does not get into the soil. When the rain went away, the heavy equipment at the Hallett Dock dug into the pile. The outer crust was easily broken up and the sand-like material was loaded onto a conveyor belt going into the ship’s cargo hold. The Halifax finally departed Duluth last night.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 10-21-2007