Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tall Ships Erie 2013 - Vessel lineup begins to take shape

With the 2013 Tall Ships Erie festival scheduled for September 5-8, the vessel lineup has begun to take shape. Several vessel websites have indicated that the vessels will be in Erie for the festival. U.S. BRIG NIAGARA will headline the festival.

Tall ship PEACEMAKER, based on Long Island, visited Savannah, Georgia in December. Onboard, the vessel had posted a map of the ports at which the vessel would call in 2013. Erie, Pennsylvania was among them.

PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II, a 2010 visitor, is scheduled to be back. Toronto-based PATHFINDER and PLAYFAIR, both of which cancelled in 2010 due to weather, have listed Erie on their 2013 sailing schedules. - Updated 4/1/13: Neither vessel will be attending

UNICORN and St. LAWRENCE II are scheduled as well. I will continue to update as more vessels are announced. There are reportedly about eight vessels scheduled for the ceremony this year.

PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II inbound Erie, September 9, 2010.

Thursday, February 7, 2013


Rand Logistics Inc., parent of Grand River Navigation, announced during a quarterly earnings conference call that the planned drydocking of tug INVINCIBLE/barge MCKEE SONS at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair has been put off for the time being, and the duo is expected to sit out the 2013 shipping season.

Grand River Navigation is expected to continue to monitor market conditions and will do the survey if demand warrants sailing the duo in 2013. For the time being, the duo remains laid up in Erie, and it's unknown if the vessel will stay here or move to another port for the season. However, it's likely they will remain here if Donjon allows.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Two Tugs and a Barge Drydocked

OLIVE L. MOORE departed the east slip of Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair at 0630 this morning and began breaking ice in Presque Isle Bay, in preparation for the movement of several vessels at the yard this morning. OLIVE L. MOORE broke several tracks to the north of Donjon and returned to dock at 0700 this morning.

The crew on the MOORE then moved over to the tug VICTORY and began to prepare it for movement into the graving dock. After problems getting pumps on the VICTORY's engine running, the tug and barge JAMES L. KUBER began working away from the north face of Donjon at 0845, beginning the process of entering the dock bow first. The process was made more complicated by the fact that the VICTORY's port engine went down at one point during the move, forcing the captain to use one engine and the bow thruster to make the turn. VICTORY's engine came back online before the duo entered the dock.

VICTORY and JAMES L. KUBER were into position by 1130 this morning, with the tug disconnected from the barge, and the crew switched back over to OLIVE L. MOORE. MOORE then entered the dock slowly, rubbing against JAMES L. KUBER, and is docked in front of the KUBER. There are four vessels - FARREL 256, KUBER, MOORE and VICTORY - in drydock at this time, which is the most vessels ever drydocked at once at the facility.

OLIVE L. MOORE breaking ice this morning at 0645.

Close up of the 1928-built tug, which hasn't been in Erie since departing on its first trip with LEWIS J. KUBER in September 2006.

VICTORY/KUBER in the snow at 0819 this morning.

Twenty-six minutes later, the duo departs the dock in the sunlight.

Moving away from the dock.

In the bay, turning toward the dock. The duo turned several times from north to south and back again.

Turning north.

Turning south again.

Stern view of the VICTORY.

McKEE SONS and TECUMSEH in the West Slip.

Turning for the dock.

In the graving dock.

About 100 feet to go here and the duo will be in position.

MOORE departing the east slip.


Next to the KUBER.

Alongside and scraping down the side of the JAMES L. KUBER.

Another view as MOORE approaches the bow of the KUBER.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Drydock Move Update

Moving of the three vessels into drydock will begin at 0700.

JAMES L. KUBER, VICTORY, OLIVE L. MOORE to be put in Drydock

Tuesday morning, tugs OLIVE L. MOORE, VICTORY, and JAMES L. KUBER will enter the graving dock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair. VICTORY/JAMES L. KUBER are going in for five-year survey. At that time, barge JAMES L. KUBER is scheduled to be painted grey to match the rest of the Lower Lakes Towing/Grand River Navigation fleet.