Thursday, April 30, 2020

Some Rescue Boats

As I said in my last post, I also saw some boats.
 This is a boat owned by the US Border Patrol but I think it was being used in a search and rescue role.  I think this would normally be done by a Coast Guard boat.
 This is used by several police authorities, including the coast guard.  I've seen it used by the Windsor Police on occasion too.
 I'm not sure who they were looking for though.
 I think this boat is new to the Detroit Police.  I know I used to see another type of boat used by the Harbor Master.
 Again, he was assisting in the search.
 The two boats pass each other.
 The 25' Defender boat in the first picture is slowly getting replaced by these 29' Metal Shark Boats.  They are powered by twin Honda 225 horsepower outboard motors.  This gives the boat a 45 knot top speed.
 They are equipped with new sensors and radar. 
They are built in Louisiana and I think they look pretty cool.

Catching the Dolphin

As I was getting ready to leave the island, I noticed some commotion by the Belle Isle bath house.  Well I noticed the commotion as police cars were passing by as I was taking pictures of the Conveyor but I noticed their destination when I got to that side of the island.
 There were some boats in the water (my next post) but what really caught my attention was the sound of the Dolphin.
 The Dolphin is the HH-65 Helicopter that belongs to the Coast Guard.  They use it in search and rescue.
 This particular one is based out of Selfridge Air National Guard Base.
 It was doing circles in a search pattern.
 After I left Belle Isle, I stopped at Milliken because I saw the helicopter was circling around.
 Milliken gave me some better pictures I think.
 the guy in the door may be a diver.
But it was cool to see.

And the Algoma Conveyor

As I was about to leave, I saw that the Algoma Conveyor was coming up.
 I forget where she was coming up from but she was heading to Goderich, Ontario.
 I think she would pick up a load of salt there.  I don't understand that as she is a fairly new boat and they don't usually carry salt.
 I wonder if she has the specially designed holds like other ships that carry salt.
 At any rate, her name reminds me of the Atlantic Conveyor which was a container ship lost in the Falklands War.
 I think that Atlantic Conveyor was being used to ferry Harriers because the British aircraft carriers couldn't carry enough.
 It makes an almost beam shot.
 I kind of like the sky in this picture.
 The beam shot.
One more shot.

My Other Happy Place Bird

The seagull also works for me but I tend to find them further inland than cormorants.
 This one was flying at me and I think it made for a cool picture.
 I think this is a younger seagull.
But I do like their coloration.

My Happy Place Bird

I actually have two happy place birds and it's really a toss up.
 The cormorant gets the edge because I see it almost exclusively near the river.  It's also a pretty cool bird especially as it skims the water top.
 They are kind of tough to catch because they move so fast.
I caught this one as it was coming in for a landing.

Catching Up With the Ojibway

So this is the ship that I was interested in catching.
 The Ojibway was built at Defoe Shipbuilding in my hometown of Bay City.  At that time she was named the Charles F. Hutchinson.  I think she has had a couple of names before becoming the Ojibway.
 She became the Ojibway when she was bought by her current owners.  She is used by the Canadian portion of this company and as a straight decker, she mostly carries grain.
 I think case, she was carrying grain from Thunder Bay to Windsor.  This is about a 60 hour journey.
 She will spend a couple days in Windsor before turning around and making the trip again.
 The beam shot.
 She continues down the river.
 A shot showing her port of registration, Port Dover.
And from this spot, she is about an hour from her destination.

A Pair of Mallard Pictures

One of the nice things about boatwatching is that it gives you an opportunity to get pictures of other things.
 Namely some of the creatures that live on or near the water, like mallards.  The mallard is a pretty cool looking duck in my books, especially if the light is hitting his head just right.  Sometimes, they will look green, in this case blue.
A side shot of the mallard.

The John J. Boland Rocking the Detroit River

So on Friday, I headed down to Belle Isle again.  There was a ship I wanted to catch.
 The Boland however was not it but since she was passing, I would catch her.
 I think she was heading down from Stoneport with a load of stone for Sandusky.
 Sandusky as you know is home to Cedar Point and a few other attractions.
 And if you are wondering about shipping in the age of the coronavirus.  They are given a temperature check before they get on board.  I think if they have a fever, they are not allowed on board.  I'm not sure how often they are checked on board but they are not allowed off until their cruise is done.  It will be interesting for the crews.
 The beam shot.
 And she passes.
I think from this point, she is about 12 hours from her destination.

Monday, April 27, 2020

Catching Up With the American Spirit

It took me alot longer to catch my first thousand footer this year but I guess that is understandable since I didn't go boatwatching until now.  If I recall, American Steamship was bought by the Rand Corporation which is also the Corporation that owns Lower Lakes and their Canadian subsidiary.  I'm not sure what that means for any of them but I have a feeling there is going to be a reorganization at some point.
The American Spirit was heading back to Duluth from Cleveland.
I think she was delivering iron to Cleveland Bulk Terminal.  From there other ships will transport the iron down to the steel mill.  I don't think the American Spirit could navigate the Cuyahoga River anyway (which is why we have the River Class ships).
It is nice to get out and see ships though but I suspect as the weather gets nicer and there are more people on Belle Isle that might be harder.
I'll enjoy it while I can though.
I didn't swap lenses, so I got some closeups of the pilothouse.
One more shot before heading back home.