Sunday 27 May 2018

Tow Boat SHANE-C.

What a wonderful time we had during our visit to New Orleans in early May 2014. Winter is winter is winter up here in the Great White North and where we live in Kanata, Ontario, a suburb of Ottawa, my wife, Janice and I have enjoyed popping into a nearby refreshment establishment that showcases a local dixieland band that plays there every second Sunday afternoon. It always great fun with a lot of good ragtime music, and for Janice's 60th birthday, we decided to have our own "Big Easy" experience, with a listen to some real dixie or as they call it at Preservation Hall, "Traditional New Orleans Jazz", indulge in the local cuisines and especially for me, photograph the river boats that ply the mighty Mississippi River.
Though I've seen and photographed all kinds of domestic and foreign dry and liquid bulk carriers in my travels abroad or while they transited the Great Lakes and the nearby St. Lawrence Seaway, every tow boat or tug that I came across had a pointed bow that would be notched into the barge or secured off tight on a hawser to H-bits on both sides amidships and at the stern. Ever since a friend in Maryland started sending me photos of the squared-bow tow boats that worked pushing cargo along Maryland's river ports, I've always been intrigued with these uniquely designed vessels and now I was going to get for the first time a close-up view of then. YES!!

It didn't take long for me to get lucky, looking for boats that is, as the first working tow boat that we saw while strolling along the Riverwalk near the replica paddle wheeler CREOLE QUEEN was the 60' triple cabin SHANE-C. pushing the crane barge M874. As the sun continued to set beyond the Crescent City Connection twin cantilever bridges, the Cass Marine Group owned SHANE-C, was making good time while overtaking the 70' tow boat LORI JOHNSON which was also heading downstream pushing several tanker barges.
The immaculate looking SHANE-C  motors by a line of laid up hopper barges and a beautiful Star-Spangled Banner fluttering in the breeze on the Algiers side of the river. Oh Say, I love what I see.
While all work on the Bollinger floating dry docks were shut down for the day, it was business as usual for the twin screw and Detroit diesel engined SHANE-C.
Built in 1973 in Harvey, Louisiana, SHANE-C is one of three tow boats that services the Lower Mississippi and the Gulf Coast for the family owned Cass Marine Group of Siddell, Louisiana.
While she was well beyond the LORI JOHNSON's tows and about to make her turn around Algiers Point in the pic above, today I'm happy to see that the hardworking SHANE-C is still very much active and currently motoring downstream near where I snapped her on that beautiful evening 4 years ago. Still working the river and passing many river towns along the way for 45 years any counting - You Keep Going Girl!!
Happy Memorial Day Weekend to all of my  American Boat Watching Friends. Stay Safe!



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