Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I was chatting with a friend of mine familiar with the East Coast tug scene and he tells me that McKeil Marine from Hamilton is planning on adding two new Z-drive tugs to their fleet and may be here around May.One of the tugs is called the Pacific Tempest but i'm sure it will be repainted and re-named.Heres a link to it 
hoping to see and photograph it this summer.Will be adding updates as i get em.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Nordanhav to the Paper mill

The weather got a lot clearer today(Monday the 28th) and I managed to get a couple of good snow-free pics of the vessel from the mainland side of the Strait.It has an order in for a pilot for around midnight..The ship was delivering a load of clay used in the paper making process.and according to one of my sources had loaded somewhere up the Amazon River.Imagine the weather shock the crew got?

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Winter continued its icy hold us and provided a frosty welcome for the crew of the Faroe Islands registered cargo vessel Nordanhav(9591 dwt) as it arrived this morning at 1000 hours at the pilot station and was inbound to the Port Hawkesbury Paper Dock at Point Tupper.Local APA pilot Scott MacDonald was onboard to assist with the vessels arrival and docking.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Cold weather in the Strait area kept a lot of those on the water shivering but the crew of the Mar Bulk vessel Pioneer persevered and finished up discharging their cargo of coal at the NSPC Dock in Point Tupper and got underway with the assistance of the tug Svitzer Bedford  with Capt. Jean Gallant and crew and APA pilot Scott MacDonald.

   .Pilot MacDonald was delivered to the Pioneer on the pilot vessel Strait Falcon skipperd by Capt. Paul Ryan.I was able to capture a few images of the operation despite bitter temps on deck.The lines vessel Strait Rider delivered the dock lines crew to the NSPC dock and got them back safely to Pirate Harbour.The crewmen handling the lines on the Pioneer told me that they were from the Ukraine and this was weather similar to their homeland.Hardy bunch I say.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

        Well the weather of late has been downright bitter and must be quite tough on those who work on deck whether it be on the lines and pilot boats or as a crewman on the ships trading in the area.The bulk carrier Pioneer arrived early this morning to discharge its cargo of coal at the NSPC dock dock at the Point Tupper Generating Station..I'm told when finished the good ship Pioneer(222 m by24m's) will have discharged 31,250 tons of coal it loaded in Norfolk Virginia..I managed to get a couple of photos of the Pioneer today from both sides of the Strait.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

   I got a chance today to photograph the arrival and docking of the 151,693 dwt crude oil tanker Asian Spirit  which arrived at the pilot station at 1030h this morning .

     Pilot Elias Dorey was transported out to the vessel by the Strait Falcon .3 tugs were dispatched to join the ship at Charlie 10 buoy and provide escort.and assistance docking at the Nustar Terminal in Point Tupper..The tugs in service today were the Svitzer Bedford with Capt. Vern Turple in command,the Point Valiant with Capt. Andrea MacDonald at the helm and the Atlantic Fir skippered by Capt. Joey Myalls.

        The tugs came alongside in the order requested by Pilot Dorey and safely and efficiently got the tanker to its destination.The entire operation took about 4 hours and was done in a highly co-ordinated and professional  manner..

Off Season

Well taking a drive around Isle Madame today has been very quiet.All the fishing boats are tied up waiting for shrimp to start up again in March.The New Brunswick fleet is wintering again this year in Petit De Grat. I will try to get a photo of the NB fleet. The crab boats are tied up as well waiting for the season to start up in April.

Dr. Rita Joe remains in the water this year. Rumor has it they have a new vessel on order this year.Replacing the Major Expense which was sold in the fall.

This area is the busiest place to be during crab season!

The small lobster boat Tara Jade II is also alongside Petit De Grat Packers.

Looking over at Samson's enterprises site, which used to be the former Booth's Fisheries plant, alot of vessels are out of the water wintering there. Here is a photo of the plant in 1985:

The second one taken in 2013.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Tugs at Work

I found a few photos in my archives showing the 3 main local tugs at work.

Monday, January 14, 2013

The crude oil tanker Americas Spirit departed the Nustar Dock about 1450h on January 13th with APA pilot Mike Langdon on the bridge as the vessel was heading to New York.I was lucky to capture some images from the tug Svitzer Bedford  commanded by Pictou County native Capt. Vern Turple.The Point Valiant assisted in the undocking manouver and Capt. Jerry Maltby was in the wheelhouse.
      The Superport Marine lines boat shown steaming past the Nustar loading arms was skippered by local Capt. Earle Tibbo who was returning to the Pirate Harbour dock with the lines crew.

       On the way out with the tanker pilot Mike Langdon  asked for a series of  35 ton bollard pulls from the Svitzer Bedford  and Captain Turple was able to oblige and held a steady 35 ton bollard pull at a speed of  9.2 knots .The pilot was testing the tugs performance at various speeds while doing the indirect moves and when finished he told Captain Turple  that the tug had done an excellent job.


Baldock- I took this photo of Baldock in August driving across the Causway.She was loading up some gravel there.She is a regular visitor to the Strait.She also unloads coal at the Nova Scotia Power dock in Point Tupper, N.S.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Further to the previous blog,here are a couple of different views of the coal top-offs
Coal trans-shipments has been going on in Chedabucto Bay for a couple of years now usually a couple of miles off the Guysborough County side in the deep water anchorages.the vessels involved are big cape-sized behemoths that average 290 to 300 meters long and about 45 meters wide.They partially load in baltimore or Norfolk on the U.S. side and sail up to our bay,drop the hook and eventually a smaller self-unloading bulker like the Baldock pictured here will be nudged into position with the aid of a tug like the Point Valiant and will rest against the yokohama fenders while the topoff os in progress..If the weathers good most of these take 24 to 30 hours and both vessels are underway to their destinations.Pictured here is the Empress at anchor and the Baldock with APA pilot Capt. Tony Pierce on the bridge giving orders to Capt. Jerry Maltby master of the tug Point Valiant..
Shipping in and out of our port is highly regulated and ship safety is top priority.The Atlantic pilotage Authority mandates that all vessels over a certain lenngth and weight must take a local pilot to assist the master in getting the vessels safely to their destinations.One of the local pilots is captain Elias Dorey of West Arichat..He told me he's been piloting almost 25 years here in the Strait Area,Sydney harbour and the Bras Dor Lakes.I got this photo Elias ascending the pilot ladder on the tanker eagle beaumont that was heading to Anchorage India in Inhabitants Bay.I don't envy the pilots as they are out in all types of weather doing their work.Kudos to the crews on the pilot boats who safely deliver them and pick them up.