Wednesday, January 15, 2014


At around 0730 this morning, tugs RHODE ISLAND and NEW YORK arrived in Erie harbor and began breaking ice around Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair. The tugs arrived from Ashtabula to prepare the graving dock for the arrival of KAMINISTIQUA. In order to drydock the vessel, the Great Lakes Towing tugs were required to move a newly built hopper barge, WITTE 2302, from the graving dock, as well as dock the tug YANKEE inside.

KAMINISTIQUA arrived from Windsor at 0930 for winter layup and proceeded into the harbor, where the vessel anchored to await preparation of the drydock.

At around 1100 RHODE ISLAND and NEW YORK entered the graving dock. RHODE ISLAND took WITTE 2302 on the hip and, with assistance from NEW YORK, slowly backed the barge out of the graving dock. The tugs turned the barge and proceeded west to the east side of Dobbins Landing, where the barge was moored alongside WITTE 2301 at noon.

In the meantime, steadily increasing winds were beginning to blow at 30 knots from the west, causing some concern for the captain of KAMINISTIQUA. Tug crews and shipyard crews stopped and conferred before the decision to move the YANKEE was made.

In a skillful, impressive display of ship handling on the part of the tug crews, RHODE ISLAND and NEW YORK took YANKEE in tow at 1330 today, turned the tug in the harbor and moved it into the building at the south end of the graving dock. YANKEE will undergo conversion to an articulated tug this winter.

KAMINISTIQUA was moved despite the high winds at around 1600 today and is now in the graving dock. The tugs, however, did not depart for Ashtabula due to weather and will probably depart on Thursday.

CSL LAURENTIEN is loaded with iron ore for Nanticoke and due there tomorrow. Reportedly the vessel is then bound for Donjon for layup; LAURENTIEN will be the second CSL ship to undergo work in the yard, following FRONTENAC last year.

EDWIN H. GOTT inbound on Tuesday morning.

Passing the pierhead lighthouse.

Close up.

Stern view.

In the bay ice.

Headed into Presque Isle Bay.


Continuing the turn.

About three hours later, GOTT lines up for the dock.

Backing into the dock.


Lifting steel off of YANKEE.

Stern view.

Another view on Tuesday afternoon.

Shortly before 0800 this morning RHODE ISLAND and NEW YORK break ice in the harbor.

RHODE ISLAND breaks a path toward Dobbins Landing.

Alongside the WITTE 2301.

RHODE ISLAND makes another pass through the harbor.

KAMINISTIQUA approaching the piers.


Close up.

Stern view.

Passing the Mountfort Terminal.

Turning to approach the anchorage.

At anchor.

RHODE ISLAND and NEW YORK work the unpainted WITTE 2302 out of drydock.

NEW YORK races around the tow in Presque Isle Bay.

Both tugs along the port side.

Turning the barge.

Approaching WITTE 2301.

NEW YORK pushes the tug RHODE ISLAND and barge up against the WITTE 2301.


NEW YORK approaching YANKEE.

Making up to move the stern of the tug off the dock. This allowed RHODE ISLAND to slide alongside the port side.

Pulling the tug away in 30 knot winds.

NEW YORK makes up to the bow of the tug.

Starting the tow.

In Erie harbor.

Close up of the YANKEE.

In the graving dock.

NEW YORK comes ahead of the tow to spot the tug RHODE ISLAND.

Photo caption.

1 comment:

Lakerbill17 said...

thanks for getting down there and posting the photos. always fascinating.