Bowsprite: A New York Harbor Sketchbook

perfect for short sea shipping

Posted in chart, Uncategorized by bowsprite on 2011/02/14


Behold, our beautiful waterways!

Mannahatta is the little blip in red. This heart of ________________ (fill in the blank: culture, art, commerce, diversity, Sodom and Gomorrah)  has been nourished by the lifeblood that pulsates and surrounds it.

To the north runs the Hudson, up the incredible locks of the New York State and Champlain canals.

Westward are the indomitable salt marshes, the silting arteries of the Passaic and Hackensack, the very busy Kill van Kull and Arthur Kill, the Raritan river which once connected us to Delaware via a canal now long gone. (Here are those mules of TWIC card fame!)

The East river mingles with the Bronx River, and flows out into the mighty Long Island Sound and beyond. Or, runs inland as the Newtown Creek and the Gowanus. Out the Narrows, the waters flow through Jamaica Bay, Sandy Hook…and out to sea.

(the i ♥ waterbloggers post has been moved over here)

wind

Posted in anchorage, chart, containership, red hook, tugs, vhf by bowsprite on 2011/02/06

Last night, thick fog closed in, the horn called out into the silent, empty night.

But over the radio, many voices spoke. As the winds came, the fog was cleared away, but the tension mounted as the wind grew in strength, gusting over 40kts.

When the winds howl, you hear the tightness in their voices.

Coming in this morning, from being in the Panama Canal four days ago, was this ship, calling from the 26 buoy at around 04h30, navigating its way around traffic, an anchoring tug and barge and into Red Hook. The winds began to die down, and everyone was talking:

“…You taking the main channel?”

“…You got a barge there or are you light?”  “No, we’re light.”

“…We’re going to anchor here.”

Molinari (ferry), two whistles?”

“…Yeah, we got your pilot here…starboard side. Roger.”

“…I’m going up the Buttermilk.”


With a sigh of relief (mine), it docked at around 6am.

Boxes are ships at anchor: Light blue are tugs. Red are tankers. Green is cargo. The dark blue arrow is the SI ferry.
I did not include boats tied up at docks nor underway unless they were in the anchorage. The 26 buoy is around the “h” of  ‘mahima’.

cool charts

I love charts & maps, and here are some of my favorite sites:

Wikimapia: I like labeling, and it’s maddening to find someone’s beaten me. Clicking on the site will often lead you to the current occupier’s website, history, and other information. I’m always impressed with how thorough and fastidious my anonymous co-mappers tend to be. Map mode is easier to read street names. However, I like the satellite mode as some folks like to outline and label their boats! I’m still looking for the surveyboat–she was not at her slip the day of class photo. Please label resp0nsibly (anyone can label)! Friends don’t let friends label drunk.

Sturgeon Bay‘s out, Katherine Walker‘s out on the beat…everybody’s out working.

Google Distance Calculator / DaftLogic: Disclaimer claims that all distances are estimations, but this is great for measuring crumbling piers (in satellite mode).

So with this handy website,  you can see that the distance between Atlantic Salt and the DSNY Marine Transfer Station is, as the seagull flies:

8miles/12.6km/6.8nm

and yet we insist on rumbling over potholed roads, congested bridges, and through backed up tunnels to truck it, schlepping the salt through three four boroughs:

16mi/26.5km

when we could it tie it on seagulls’ legs and fly it!! duh!!

Antipodes Map: could we dredge our way to china? not by going straight through! we’d end up due west of Tasmania!
If It Was My Home:  this is a new find. You only feel like playing with this one once. Thanks, BitterEnd & RedRightReturning!

© 1987 D.Jouris/Hold the Mustard. All rights reserved. The copyrighted image may not be reproduced, altered, or transmitted in any format

Hold the Mustard: You in Funk? at War? in Hell? They have very fun maps! Thank you, David, for permission. Take a peek, place an order!

Upside Down and Unusual Maps: the last time I felt this disoriented was when I was driving the survey boat south, away from one of the many basins in Jamaica Bay. I was so confused: the chartplotter was north up, the manhattan skyline seemed east of us, the channel seemed south, my boss was checking our data, and I was tearing along at 20 kts headed straight for a shoal 1′depth at low water.

And! the Source—NOAA: Ode to 12327, Hommage to 12334!

¡Hola, fellow ChartLover! I have BOTH charts and Katherine Walker on here por te!

views of the kill van kull & the arthur kill

Posted in chart, kill van kull, schooners, Uncategorized by bowsprite on 2010/03/16

What could be better than to be on an open metal deck of a lovely old boat in the fog, rain, thunder and lightning?

A. looking south into Gulfport Reach


Sunday was the transit of the Pioneer from her home at pier 17 down  to the a marina at the bottom of Staten Island. The trip took 5 hrs motoring at about 6 knots.

B. a view looking north into Newark Bay; Newark Bay Bridge in the background.

C. Howland Hook to port and Port Elizabeth to starboard, we go under the
Arthur Kill Rail Road Lift Bridge first, and then the Goethals Bridge

D. In the background is the Fresh Kills Land Fill

Below, the Pioneer is tied up at the yard in (E.) Tottenville, ready to be hauled out for work.
Ploughshare Point tank farms in the background at the foot of the Outerbridge Crossing.

Weatherly inspiration from Tugster.

An error on my original chart brought up the Boneyard (thanks, Vlad!). Photos of what the ‘graveyard of ships’ looked like once were taken by Shaun o’Boyle and opacity; it does not look like that anymore. Recent views found here and here on Tugster.

Hungry for more views? look at Frogma’s circumnavigation around Staten Island: 50 miles of kayaking in 14 hours!

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