Tuesday, October 29, 2013

ALGORAIL Delivers Rare Load

Paying her first visit to Erie since 2006, ALGORAIL arrived in Erie this morning at 0400 and docked at the Mountfort Terminal. The 1968-built classic brought to port a rare load of salt from Windsor, Ontario. This is the first load of salt from Canada delivered to the port in at least twelve years.

After spending the morning hours of a beautiful late October day unloading, ALGORAIL departed the Mountfort Terminal at 1030 this morning, turned in the harbor and was outbound at 1100. The vessel is headed for Lake Huron and will be stopping at Imperial Oil in Sarnia for fuel for her Fairbanks-Morse engines.

ALGORAIL unloading at 0815 this morning.

Swinging the boom in and preparing for departure.

Departing the dock.

Turned, ALGORAIL heads out.

Passing one of the many fishing boats out this morning.

Another view.

Between the piers.

Stern view.

Picking up speed, ALGORAIL heads through the channel.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

FRONTENAC Arrives, is Drydocked; WITTE 2301 Emerges

At 0745 this morning, Lakeshore Towing's tugs LOW BIDDER and DON HENRY, along with towboat TITAN, entered the graving dock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair and hooked up to newly built hopper barge WITTE 2301. A few minutes later, with DON HENRY on the stern and leading the tow, the trio emerged from the dock and moved the barge to the West Slip, moored across from McKEE SONS. By 0915 the tow was complete and the barge was moored at the dock.

FRONTENAC departed Nanticoke shortly before 1000 this morning after unloading taconite pellets and arrived in Erie at 1300. After a short stop at the Mountfort Terminal while the dock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair was prepared, FRONTENAC turned in the harbor and backed into the graving dock at 1530 today.

FRONTENAC's drydocking is different than the previous few drydockings at Donjon - VICTORY/JAMES L. KUBER, barge A-390 and THALASSA DESGAGNES have all been drydocked bow-in. This is the first drydocking done for FRONTENAC's owner, Canada Steamship Lines, in Erie since the winter of 1996-97 when MANITOULIN, JEAN PARISIEN, and LOUIS R. DESMARAIS were drydocked here. Of note, MANITOULIN has been scrapped and the other two vessels have been renamed since then; FRONTENAC, however, has carried the same name since being built in 1967.

LOW BIDDER works WITTE 2301 west toward the slip in the rain this morning.

Coming around tug INVINCIBLE.

LOW BIDDER and DON HENRY line the WITTE 2301 up for the dock.

LOW BIDDER leading the tow.

WITTE 2301 is similar to the three hopper barges built for Sterling Equipment this summer.

Passing a mooring line to the dock.

DON HENRY holds the stern off the dock.

FRONTENAC inbound.

Another view between the piers.

This is believed to be 1967-built FRONTENAC's first visit ever to Erie.

The vessel is here for her five-year survey.

Passing the Coast Guard Station.

Stern view.

Approaching the Mountfort Terminal.

Close up.

FRONTENAC docks at the Mountfort Terminal.

FRONTENAC Underway; WITTE 2301 Emerges

FRONTENAC is currently departing Nanticoke bound for Erie. The vessel should be arriving around 1300.

Lakeshore Towing's tugs completed moving the new hopper barge WITTE 2301 from the drydock to the west side of the West Slip, next to McKEE SONS, at 0915 this morning. WITTE 2301, built for Donjon Shipbuilding's parent Donjon Marine, is similar to the three new hopper barges just built for Sterling Equipment.


FRONTENAC continues to unload in Nanticoke at this time; I will post when the ship gets underway.

Lakeshore Towing's tugs LOW BIDDER, DON HENRY and towboat TITAN are currently moving a new hopper barge out of Donjon's graving dock and will be docking it behind FARRELL 256 on the east side of Donjon's yard to make room for FRONTENAC.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

FRONTENAC Inbound Nanticoke

FRONTENAC is currently inbound Nanticoke to unload and should be in Erie sometime tomorrow morning for drydocking.

At 0730 Lakeshore Towing will move the new hopper barge out of drydock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair.

Monday, October 21, 2013


FRONTENAC is currently at anchor behind Long Point for weather before docking at Nanticoke to unload. There's no ETA to Erie at this time for the vessel.

The new hopper barge in the drydock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair was not moved this morning due to weather. I will update when I learn more as to when the move may take place.

Saturday, October 19, 2013


Tug VICTORY and barge JAMES L. KUBER, laden with stone for the Old Ore Dock, will be arriving in Erie at around 1930 tonight.

Friday, October 18, 2013

FRONTENAC Due for Drydocking

FRONTENAC is currently downbound in Lake Superior, and per her AIS is due in Nanticoke to unload taconite pellets on Monday at 0030. The vessel will then proceed to Erie, where she will be drydocked at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair. McKEE SONS will be shifted across the West Slip to the cruise terminal and FRONTENAC will dock in McKEE SONS' spot until the drydock is ready.

In preparation for drydocking FRONTENAC, a newly built hopper barge will be moved to the east side of Donjon on Monday morning.

Sunday, October 13, 2013


VICTORY/JAMES L. KUBER arrived in Erie at 1400 today and docked at the Mountfort Terminal, less than fifty feed forward of J.S. St. JOHN. The duo began unloading after a short delay to rinse off residue left on the boom.

VICTORY/KUBER arriving this afternoon.

Passing the lighthouse.

In the channel.

Close up of VICTORY.

Stern view as the unit turns for the Mountfort Terminal.

Docking ahead of the St. JOHN.

Alongside and swinging the boom out.

KUBER Update

VICTORY/JAMES L. KUBER should arrive around 1400 today.

Saturday, October 12, 2013


VICTORY/JAMES L. KUBER, laden with stone, are expected in Erie at 0930 on Sunday morning.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


Erie harbor was busy today, with two tugs, a barge, and a large motor yacht arriving during daylight hours.

Motor yacht PAMELA RAE, registered in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, arrived in Erie at 0900 and went to the Erie Yacht Club. PAMELA RAE is eventually bound for Florida for the winter.

About an hour later, Donjon Marine's newest tug, the 1976-built YANKEE, arrived in Erie and proceeded inbound for Donjon Shipbuilding and Repair. The tug is docked along the north wall of Donjon's yard and will likely be here all winter.

JOSEPH H. THOMPSON/THOMPSON JR. arrived in Erie at 1730 this afternoon and docked at the Old Ore Dock. The duo is currently unloading a cargo of stone from Calcite, Michigan.

PAMELA RAE enters Erie harbor.

Stern view of the 75-foot long yacht.

YANKEE passing buoys 3&4 inbound.

Another view.

Passing Erie pierhead light.

In the channel.

Side view of YANKEE.

Stern view of the tug.

Stern view of the 1976-built tug as it enters Erie harbor.

JOSEPH H. THOMPSON/THOMPSON JR inbound this afternoon.

Close up.

Side view.

Stern view of the duo.

Stern view approaching Erie harbor.

Coyote on the peninsula this evening.

The tame coyote showed little fear of humans.


YANKEE will be arriving around 0915 this morning.

JOSEPH H. THOMPSON will be arriving with her stone cargo around 1730 today.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Tug YANKEE will be arriving mid-morning Wednesday for Donjon's yard.

JOSEPH H. THOMPSON/THOMPSON Jr. will be arriving tomorrow afternoon with a cargo of stone. I will post an update with better arrival times by 0800 on Wednesday.

Friday, October 4, 2013


HERBERT P. BRAKE and Sterling Equipment's new hopper barge, COLE, departed Erie at 1900 on Monday bound for the Welland Canal. The duo was downbound for Oswego, New York, and eventually the Hudson River, on Tuesday.

Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair Hull 124, COLE, is the third of these hopper barges built for Sterling Equipment and delivered by HERBERT P. BRAKE.

Recently painted HERBERT P. BRAKE pushes COLE downbound into Lock 8 of the Welland Canal on Tuesday.

The duo passes into the lock.

A few minutes later BRAKE pushes COLE downbound north of the lock.

Close up.


Side view.

Stern view.

BRAKE and COLE head down the Canal.