Saturday, May 31, 2008


Ryba Marine's tug KATHY LYNN and spud barge CT 150 remain in Erie today loading a crane at the Mountfort Terminal. I believe they're headed back to to Lake Michigan with this crane, as Ryba Marine is reported to be using KATHY LYNN on a dredging project in the Kinickinic River in Milwaukee.

During one of the attempts to load the crane, the crane got away from crews and narrowly missed hitting the warehouse on the Mountfort Terminal.

Meanwhile, the next load of biodiesel is scheduled to go out later this week aboard the tanker SIDSEL KNUTSEN. The KNUTSEN has been a frequent trader to the Great Lakes over the past few years, but is best known for colliding with and sinking the J.W. WESTCOTT in the Detroit River on October 23, 2001. The WESTCOTT, the U.S. mailboat servicing ships in the Detroit River, was completing a pilot change on the KNUTSEN at the time of the accident. The 1948 Erie-built WESTCOTT sank in the accident, killing two of the four people aboard the vessel at the time.

KATHY LYNN with the barge alongside the Mountfort Terminal this afternoon.

Loading the crane.

Crane gets away from the crew working on loading.

Moving backwards. Note the man standing between the crane and the warehouse.

The crane is stopped. Note that the man standing between the crane and warehouse has wisely moved.

Friday, May 30, 2008

KATHY LYNN, Spud Barge Arrive in Port

Tug KATHY LYNN and her barge arrived in port this morning at 0730 and docked at the Mountfort Terminal. The barge is loaded with several vehicles and other equipment, along with what appears to be a small cutter dredge, all equipment that would be indicative of preparations for working in the harbor. I'm not sure what they're doing in port, but I will update as I learn more.

KATHY LYNN and spud barge in Erie this afternoon.

Another view.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Ryba Marine Construction's tug KATHY LYNN and barge are due in Erie tomorrow at 1100.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Update: Barge Conversion of the Steamer RESERVE

Last summer I wrote about the fate of a frequent Erie visitor, the steamer RESERVE, which was to be converted to a barge.

The conversion was successful, the RESERVE was renamed JAMES L. KUBER and is now pushed by the tug VICTORY. On Monday the duo arrived in Conneaut on one of their first trips to the lower lakes, loaded with stone from Calcite, Michigan.

Tug VICTORY and JAMES L. KUBER backing into Conneaut harbor.

Another view.

Close up of the barge.


Backing into Conneaut harbor.

Another view.

The unit turns for the P&C Stone Dock.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Historical Arrivals: May 27, 1948

On this date in 1948, CALUMET arrives with iron ore from Ashland. JOHN J. BOLAND arrives in ballast from Buffalo and clears with coal for Buffalo.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Historical Arrivals - May 26

Historical Arrivals for May 26:

1952 - C.S. ROBINSON and ADRIATIC arrive with iron ore from Superior and Two Harbors, respectively. Both clear light for Superior later in the day. MIDLAND PRINCE, NORMAN J. KOPMEIER and STANDARD PORTLAND CEMENT arrived light to load coal, clearing for Toronto, Toronto and Buffalo, respectively.

2000 - ALGOWOOD arrives with stone for the Mountfort Terminal.

2002- DAVID Z. NORTON arrives with stone for the Mountfort Terminal.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Historical Arrivals: May 25, 1948

On this date in 1948, two ships unloaded iron ore in Erie. The JAMES DAVIDSON and LEHIGH both unloaded iron ore from Superior at the Ore Dock. Both vessels cleared in ballast for Lake Superior later in the day.

Saturday, May 24, 2008


CHEYENNE departed Erie this morning at 0030 bound for the Welland Canal and Oswego, pushing the four deck barges remaining in the West Slip, the WITTE 1401, WITTE 1403, WITTE 1404, and WITTE 1405.

The CHEYENNE pushed the barges out with two of them lashed side-by-side, taking them to Port Colborne this way. WITTE 1401 and WITTE 1403 were left in Port Colborne and the CHEYENNE took the remaining two barges downbound, bound for the north end of the Canal, after which the tug will return upbound for the other two barges.

One more barge remains under construction at Erie Shipbuilding

Friday, May 23, 2008


CHEYENNE remained in port today, secured at the West Slip. The tug should be departing with one or two barges in tow sometime this weekend. I will update when I learn more.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


JOHN J. BOLAND, laden with stone from Calcite, arrived in port this morning at 1030 hours and docked at the Old Ore Dock in a stiff west wind that affected the vessel's docking. The BOLAND's captain favored the west side of the channel leading into the Old Ore Dock as the BOLAND docked to unload.

Tug CHEYENNE departed Port Colborne at 0830 this morning and arrived in Erie at 1430 today, proceeding quickly through the channel and docking in the West Slip behind the new Donjon Marine barges and the fishing vessel VICTORY.

JOHN J. BOLAND inbound this morning.

Close up.

Stern view.

Another view of the BOLAND.

Turning for the Old Ore Dock.

BOLAND moors at the Old Ore Dock.

CHEYENNE inbound.

The tug was pushing plenty of water as she quickly headed inbound.

Another view.

Stern view.

CHEYENNE enters the channel.

In the West Slip.

CHEYENNE backs as the tug approaches the dock.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


CUYAHOGA arrived in Erie this afternoon at 1300 and backed to the North Pier to unload sand from Thessalon, Ontario. The sand will be distributed on beaches at Presque Isle for replenishment after a hard winter eroded many of the beaches.

JOHN J. BOLAND, with stone from Calcite, is due in Erie tomorrow at 1030. Tug CHEYENNE, bound for Erie Shipbuilding to pick up more of the new deck barges built at the yard, is moored in Port Colborne, Ontario for the night and should be getting underway tomorrow for Erie. This likely puts the tug in port during daylight Thursday.

CUYAHOGA backing in the channel.

Another view.

Bow view.

CUYAHOGA docks at the Pier to unload.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


CUYAHOGA, loaded with sand from Thessalon for beach replenishment, is due in Erie tomorrow at 1200.

Monday, May 19, 2008


More biodiesel will be shipped through the port of Erie next month, with the next vessel due around June 4. PANAM FLOTA is due in Montreal on Wednesday and will be stopping for fuel there before heading to Rotterdam.

Meanwhile, the first load of sand for the beach replenishment will be arriving on Wednesday from Thessalon, Ontario aboard either the CUYAHOGA or MISSISSAGI. Both vessels are due to load in Thessalon, due today and tomorrow, respectively, and I'm not sure which will be loading for Erie at this time.

I will update tomorrow when I learn more.

Also, as a side note, much is being made in the local of gas prices on the water being more expensive than on land. Although this is the case with Port Authority-owned marinas, the fuel dock at the marina at Presque Isle is currently selling 89-octane gas for $3.879 per gallon, compared to $3.959 at most stations in tow and $4.349 at Port Authority-owned marinas.

Sunday, May 18, 2008


This morning at 0700 Lakeshore Towing tug FLATTOP arrived at the Mountfort Terminal to remove the oil-containment boom surrounding the PANAM FLOTA in Erie harbor. Crews removed the boom as loading of the tanker with almost three million gallons of biodiesel was being completed.

With loading of 111 railcars totalling around 2,830,500 gallons (each car holding 25,500 gallons) complete, the PANAM FLOTA's crew spent the morning making preparations to depart for Rotterdam before getting underway at 1300 today in heavy winds producing rough seas in Presque Isle Bay.

This is the second load of biodiesel produced by Lake Erie Biofuels to be shipped through the port of Erie; the first was shipped out last December on board the FLOTA's fleetmate CLIPPER TOBAGO.

Photos below by Jim Thoreson.

1999-built tanker PANAM FLOTA finishes loading.

FLATTOP shows up this morning.

This afternoon, the oil-containment boom is removed and the FLOTA is ready to go.

PANAM FLOTA at dock.

Another view.

Springing away from the dock.

FLOTA moves away from the dock.

Turning for the channel.


The FLOTA's captain and the lake pilot direct the operation.

One of the FLOTA's crew members works on deck in preparation for the trip across the Atlantic.

Stern view. Note the position of the deck crane.

Deck crane lifts the gangway to reposition it on deck.

FLOTA outbound.

Clearing Erie harbor bound for the Netherlands.

MOTIVATION, of Key Largo, Florida, inbound the channel bound for Wolverine Marina.

Stern view.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

WHITE, McKEE SONS,FLOTA in Port Together; CSX Derails Biodiesel Car at Mountfort Terminal

INVINCIBLE/McKEE SONS arrived at Erie this afternoon at 1445 hours with stone from Stoneport. The tug/barge unit backed into Erie harbor and secured at the Mountfort Terminal behind the PANAM FLOTA, which continues loading biodiesel and should be done around 0700 Sunday.

Right behind the McKEE SONS was the H. LEE WHITE, which arrived at 1700 with stone from Calcite and docked at the Old Ore Dock. The WHITE should be outbound later this evening.

McKEE SONS departed at 2045 hours this evening.

While switching biodiesel cars at the Mountfort Terminal this morning, CSX shifted one of the empty cars too far backward and it jumped the track, knocking out part of the fence on the east side of the dock.

FLOTA and McKEE SONS at the Mountfort Terminal.

1999-built PANAM FLOTA.

Wide view of the Mountfort Terminal.

H. LEE WHITE unloading.

Another view.


Overhead view of the WHITE.

FLOTA and McKEE SONS at the Mountfort Terminal.

Another view.


The damaged fence at the Mountfort Terminal.

McKEE SONS departing.

Backing away with the FLOTA in the foreground.

Away from the dock.


Heading into the channel.

Close up at sunset.

This rainbow came out shortly before sunset. I was hoping to get it with the McKEE SONS in the picture, but alas, it wasn't to be.