Every year, the weekend after Labor Day the tiny town of Waterford, NY hosts the Tugboat Round-up to celebrate and bring light to the NY State Canal system, the Tugs and their importance in the building of the maritime economy after the War of 1812.
Waterford is uniquely situated at the confluence of the Erie and Champlain Canals which are currently maintained and operated by NY State Canal Corp.
For the four years I sailed with K-SEA and the subsequent friendship THAT created with TUGSTER – I was only able to experience a Round-Up from afar. Classic boats like Tug CORNELL, Tug FRANCES TURECAMO and Tugs URGER and GOVERNOR CLEVELAND were all to be admired from a distance with the help of the World Wide Web.
Until THIS year. THIS year I was able to complete the Hajj
We would be hosted by Capt Fred Wehner, a sponsor of the Round-up and Captain of TUG44. We would cast off at 1200L and head for Albany to begin the Parade of Tugs. That could only be done by Locking down through the Federal Lock at Troy
Here, the Captain (far right) and members of his motley crew pose for a Bowsprite snap
(L-R: Myself, Tugster & The First Captain Dupee)
Once at the Port of Albany we were able to see Reinauer ATB DEAN REINAUER/RTC106 get underway and put to sea with the help of KATHLEEN TURECAMO
We would have to Lock back up at Troy and wait for the parade to begin. Once mustered we headed back to Waterford.
NY State Canal Corp. M/V GRAND ERIE
As the ‘Official’ Photo Boat we were granted unparalleled mooring privileges for the purposes of snapping great pix – you be the judge
On our way back up to Waterford we’d pass DonJon Tug HERBERT P BRAKE with towboat HR BASS in push gear
Tug Of The Year
Tug GOWANUS BAY (That’s her Skipper, Captain Jessica Dulong, in the bottom snap)
Tug 8TH SEA
New York Marine Highway’s Tug FRANCES
Tour boat SPIRIT OF ALBANY
Tug BETTY JUNE
NY State Canal Corp. Tug GOVERNOR CLEVELAND
NY State Marine Highway’s Tug MARGOT
NY State Marine Highway’s Tug BENJAMIN ELLIOT
Tug ATLANTIC HUNTER II
Tug TOOT TOOT (note her WINDING KEY – it moves when she’s making may)
Tug IRON CHIEF (Wood-fired steam boiler)
A final look at the wall before we would head to our berth
While he may get tired of hearing it; I simply CAN’T thank Captain Fred enough letting me and my Dad tag along. It was a GRAND time. And we still had another whole day!
All pix snapped by me