Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The Cason J. Callaway Makes an Appearance Past DeTour

If I didn't mention it in my last post, I'll mention it here.  I ended up taking a detour through DeTour on my way to the Soo.  I used to have a Ryerson bumper sticker on my old car and I never got one for my new car.  There is a place in DeTour that has those bumper stickers, so I stopped there.
 After wandering around for a bit, I caught the sight of the Callaway approaching the passage.  It made me kind of happy because I like the Callaway.
 She's a pretty hard working boat and I think that is even more so as the Arthur Anderson is getting some work.
 I like seeing these ships because I have a feeling they aren't going to be around much longer.
 However, I don't really want to think about that day and I will enjoy them while I can.
 She does cut a nice profile.
 And the side shot as she starts to pass Drummond Island.
and one more shot as she leaves the channel.

The Orca Boat

Sometimes I have too active of an imagination for my own good.
 One of my favorite all time movies is Jaws and for some reason, this reminded me of the boat from the movie.
 It just needed to be a little more run down with a shark's mouth on the front.
 Maybe a little longer platform on the front end.
But pretty close, I'd say.

Pictures of the Bridge and Lighthouse

After lunch, I decided to head down to the Bridge View Park to get some shots of the Bridge.  I guess I always have to get pictures of the Bridge when I stop in Mackinaw City.
 Which is fine, because it's a pretty nice looking bridge.
 It was a fairly nice day.
 I also got some shots of the lighthouse.
 More shots of the Bridge.
 I'll have to say that this is probably one of my favorite lighthouses.  It almost reminds me of a castle.
 It was a shame that she was made obsolete by the Bridge.  But then again, I guess that's the march of progress.
 The fairly common shot of the Bridge.
 The long view of the Bridge.  It's amazing that this is five miles long.
 Another shot of that.
 The lighthouse from another angle.

And one more shot of the Bridge before moving on.

Some Lilacs in Mackinaw City

So we decided to stop in Mackinaw City to grab lunch at the pasty place just off the Bridge.  I got a beef pasty and it was pretty good.
 There was a lilac bush on the outside, so I had to take some pictures of it.
 It looked pretty cool but I'd imagine it's not going to be around much longer.
they looked pretty nice though.

A Stop at Camp Rotary...Sort Of

Since it was sort of on the way, I decided to make a brief stop in front of Camp Rotary.
I was a Boy Scout while growing up and as a result I spent part of my summers here.  Our council had three campgrounds:  Bear Lake, Paul Bunyan and Camp Rotary.  Bear Lake was the cream of the crop.  It had a nice clear lake and some other amenities.  I think that made it attractive to other people, so the Council sold it.  Paul Bunyan was at the other end.  It had a small lake but the fishing wasn't too bad.  It wasn't very nice though.  I think the Council ended up selling that too.  Camp Rotary was the middle of the road.

I didn't wander around the camp though.  I would imagine things have changed in the almost 30 years since I've been there. I know one thing, it used to be Lake Huron Area Council.  Now it is known as the Michigan Crossroads Council and looks like it is a combination of the old Councils.

A Brief Stop in Clare

After picking up my dad for the trip up north, I decided to make a stop in Clare since it wasn't too far off the route I had to take. 
 Clare is home to Cops and Doughnuts which is a bakery owned by the Clare Police Department.  They saw that the bakery was going to go out of business, so they pooled their money together to buy it.  It has since been pretty successful.
 Looking down one side of the street.
 And the other.
 I decided to take a walk down to the grain elevator.  It kind of reminded me of the one I have in my train setup.
I kind of liked this sign.

Passing Pictures of the Blue Water Train

As I looked at the place where I could see the train schedules, I saw that I had a chance to catch the Blue Water as it passed East Lansing.  Granted, an Amtrak train is pretty much the same, especially the trains around here, but it was nice to see a different route.
 The Blue Water Train connects Port Huron, MI to Chicago, IL using the old Grand Trunk lines and connecting with the Wolverine in Battle Creek.  It was not part of the original Amtrak system and was added in 1974.
 In 1982, the line was extended to Toronto and renamed the International Limited.  It operated in conjunction with VIA rail of Canada.  This iteration of the line lasted until 2004 when delays due to Post 9/11 security measures became unbearable for the passengers.  It was restored to the current configuration and ridership immediately improved.
 Because it uses the same line as the Wolverine, it will go to 110 miles per hour
 Like I said, it's neat to see another train even if it looks the same as the train I'm used to.  If I had gotten here about five minutes sooner, I could have caught a CN intermodal train.
 A shot of the trailing engine.
And one more shot before moving on.

Shots of the Wolverine Before Heading Up North

I headed up north on Thursday.  I was hoping to get an earlier start than when I did.  As I was leaving, it dawned on me that I might have a shot at catching the Wolverine before leaving.  So I looked at the Amtrak site and it said she was running a little late, so it seemed that I had a chance.
 I managed to catch her Gallup Park.  The sun was still trying to peek out, so it was a little darker than I wanted. 
 I think I found a decent spot for catching the train.
And one more shot.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Michigan Exposures Hits the Road - Day 3

My day started with a trip across to Sugar Island to get some pictures from there.  I was going to wait over there for the Paul R. Tregurtha but it seems like she took too long at the locks to get out.
I did manage to catch two ships from over on the Island.  One of them was the Burns Harbor.  I figured, I would post this shot I caught as I was heading back to the mainland.  All told, I caught 14 ships today.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Michigan Exposures On the Road - Day 2

I continued my stay in Sault Ste Marie today.  It was Engineer's Day, although  I didn't spend a ton of time actually at the Locks.  There were far too many people.  I did however catch a few ships.
 I got up pretty early to catch the Blough this morning.  And then I ended up following her.
My day ended with the Speer at Four Mile Beach.

I will post more pictures when I get home.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Michigan Exposures Hits the Road....

Tomorrow is Engineer's Day at the Soo Locks and I headed up today.  It was actually a pretty nice day.
 I decided to take a detour through DeTour.  I was hoping to catch a ship or two and it turned out that I would catch two.  It was good thing too because most of the ships had passed through the Soo.
We also went on a tour of the Valley Camp with the rest of the boatnerds.  It was pretty cool because we had free reign of the ship.

Basically I posted pictures of the day and I will post the rest when I get home.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

A Couple Hours in Deshler

As it was, I only spent a couple of hours in Deshler.  I got a pretty late start and I was doing trivia tonight, so I didn't want to spend too much time there.
 A couple of hours is plenty of time in Deshler though.  Generally there is a fairly steady stream of trains that passes through.  The only problem is that it seems like that stream slows down a little bit in mid-Afternoon.
 I still think that the rail park in Fostoria is nicer, but I like the views here.  Especially since you can get some shots with old rail buildings in the background.
 I'm trying to learn what the different signals mean.  Since this is an old B&O signal, it is in the process of being phased out.  I think that yellow means that there might be a train heading towards the signal.
 Green definitely means be on the look out for a train.
 And this was the train I should have been on the lookout for.  Had I been a little more confident in what the signals meant, I would have been in a different place to catch it as it passed a pond on the other side.
 Another angle.
 This is an engine that is owned by Citigroup.  I presume they are leasing it to CSX.
 A view that almost says it all.
 Occasionally, I will see some graffiti that I like on a train.
 A skull and some fish thing.  Apparently they are building America.
 An evil mastodon, I think.
 I'm not sure why Stimpy would be holding a sickle but he is.
 This is more like it.
 I kind of like it when you see fallen flags on a train.
 The thing my cat is named after.
 Graffiti philosophy.
 Another engine passing.
 I kind of liked the way the coal dust was fogging this picture.
 I believe this is another lease unit.
 Another shot of an engine passing the water tower.
 A train of engines.
 The lead engine.
And it passes.