You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Kill Van Kull’ category.

It has been almost a week since I’ve seen a tugboat! I’ve been on overload with the Hatteras-Okracoke ferries, day and night. I do have some new photos from the KVK shot before I went on vacation.

Ferry Floyd J Lupton. Photo by John Skelson.

Ferry Croatoan. Photo by John Skelson.

Union County NJ Police Launch patrolling the KVK. Photo by John Skelson.

USAC Container ship Asir. Photo by John Skelson.

St Andrews in Push Gear. Photo by John Skelson.

Oleander is a regular visitor to NY Harbor. Photo by John Skelson.

MSC Kim riding high in the water. Photo by John Skelson.

McAllister Sisters. Photo by John Skelson.

Laura K Moran passing Bruce A McAllister. Photo by John Skelson.

Joan Turecamo. Photo by John Skelson.

Tanker Emma Miller hitting a wake. Photo by John Skelson.

Bruce A McAllister. Photo by John Skelson.

From Hatteras North Carolina… John Skelson

All photos by John Skelson, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee

Maher Terminal Port Elizabeth. Photo by John Skelson

Go behind the scenes of our bustling port on a Hidden Harbor Tour this Saturday. The Working Harbor Committee presents their 2.5 hour fully narrated Hidden Harbor Tour of Port Newark, in partnership with Circle Line Sightseeing.

Bill Miller, “Mr Ocean-Liner” is the guest speaker and together with Captain John Doswell, they will give industry-insider tidbits as the tour boat winds her way through the harbor. Get tickets here.

Explorer of the Seas Pearl River and Quantico Creek. Photo by John Skelson

The tour departs from Pier 84 on the Hudson River (W42nd Street and 12 Avenue), on a comfortable Circle Line boat with an outdoor deck as well as an air-conditioned deck and cruises through “tugboat alley” – the Kill Van Kull, to the container terminals of Port Newark.

Laura K Moran Pushing Hard. Photo by John Skelson

a journalist from recently joined us on a tour. She wrote of her experience:

It’s easy for us New Yorkers to forget that we’re actually islanders, and even easier to lose sight of the size and scope of the working port that our city’s harbor once was . . . and very much still is. In fact, New York Harbor today only trails Long Beach and Los Angeles in California amongst the nation’s largest ports in terms of size, and holds the title of the busiest working port on the East Coast.

So many photos! Photo by John Skelson

For some insight into this behind-the-scenes side of NYC, Hidden Harbor Tours recently launched operations aboard Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises (the tours were previously conducted on New York Water Taxi) to showcase a fascinating back-door peek into the goings-on of New York Harbor (including both the New York and New Jersey waterfronts) that’s far removed from the typical tourist boat circuits that normally ply these waters.

Underway. Photo by John Skelson

Participants get to ogle nooks and crannies where the other tourist boats don’t venture, offering up-close encounters with tugboats, shipping barges, and other assorted maritime vessels, plus plenty of hidden-from-view shoreline sights that you wouldn’t be able to see any other way.

Morgan Reinauer at Caddell’s Dry Dock. Photo by John Skelson

Designed by nonprofit organization Working Harbor Committee, the narrated 2.5-hour tours launched in June 2014, and are scheduled to run on select Saturdays through October. Commentary onboard is offered by a rotating roster of noted maritime speakers and historians.

Gramma T Lee Moran huffin’ and puffin’. Photo by John Skelson

Cruises board at 10:30am, and sail from 11am to 1:30pm. Tickets cost $40/adults; $35/seniors; and $26/kids ages 3 to 12 (children under 3 are free). A portion of the ticket proceeds go toward supporting Working Harbor Committee’s mission. Visit or  to book; sailings embark on Circle Line from Pier 83 on the Hudson River (at W. 42nd St. & 12th Ave.). Read more at here

by Mai Armstrong for the Working Harbor Committee. All photos except image of Bill Miller by John Skelson.

City of Water Day was held this past Saturday, with a visit to the FDNY Fireboat 343, and a cruise on the Fireboat John J Harvey. Also, there are a few photos from the ferry ride to Manhattan.

Cape Beale at Stapleton. Photo by John Skelson

Evening Tide. Photo by John Skelson

Tug Jay Michael and Launch Alex D with dredging ops at MOT Channel Bayonne. Photo by John Skelson

Still at Weeks Marine, Jersey City, Left Coast Lifter’s boom has been raised, maybe finally preparing to head for the Tappan Zee Bridge. Photo by John Skelson

Justine McAllister with an oil barge “On the Hip”. Photo by John Skelson

Fireboat “Three Forty Three”. Photo by John Skelson

The huge Bow Monitor on Three Forty Three capable of delivering 18,000 gallons of water per minute. Photo by John Skelson

Tug Pegasus taking on passengers for a cruise. Photo by John Skelson

Fireboat John J Harvey. Photo by John Skelson

John J Harvey salutes Norwegian Gem as she leaves port on a cruise. Photo by John Skelson

Keep spotting,
John Skelson

All photos by John Skelson, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee

Ed Note: Don’t forget, John’s photos are on exhibit through July 31st onboard the Historic Lighthouse Tender “Lilac”. Ship hours are: 4:00 to 7:00 PM Thursdays and 2:00 to 7:00 PM on Saturdays and Sundays. Admission is Free. (Directions to Pier 25.)

Arthur blew in on July 4th stirring up the currents and winds, creating issues for the fireworks displays, but, fortunately not much damage.

The “New” tug is not really new by any means, “Sandy G” was spotted crossing the harbor this week pushing a Crane Barge. I don’t know for sure but she may have been heading for the Tappan Zee project. Queen Mary 2 paid NY Harbor 2 visits this past week, sailing on a short 3 day cruise, and back on Sunday to load for a transatlantic crossing. Also spotted was a “new” colorful Stena Weco Tanker, anchored at Stapleton.

My photo exhibit “Tugboats, Workhorses of NY Harbor” opened this week on the Lighthouse Tender Lilac moored at Pier 25 in Manhattan. The exhibit will be up for the month of July, hours are Thursday 4-7PM and Saturday and Sunday 2-7PM.

Stenaweco Venture anchored at Stapleton. Photo: ©John Skelson

Tanker, Atlantic Pegasus in the anchorage. Photo: ©John Skelson

Austin and Stephen Scott Reinauer picking up a barge. Photo: ©John Skelson

Sandy G a new sighting, but not new by any means. Photo: ©John Skelson

Sandy G pushing a Crane Barge, Chesapeake Coast in the background. Photo: ©John Skelson

Magothy and oil barge bunkering Queen Mary 2. Photo: ©John Skelson

Queen Mary 2 at Red Hook, Brooklyn. Photo: ©John Skelson

Jill Reinauer in the KVK. Photo: ©John Skelson

HMS Justice having a tough time with winds and current from “Arthur”. Photo: ©John Skelson

Barney Turecamo in the KVK. Photo: ©John Skelson

Hunting Creek passing Magothy. Photo: ©John Skelson

Have a good time at City of Water Day tomorrow! Until next week… John Skelson

All photos by John Skelson, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee

Sorry for the late posting today, I took a much-needed morning off before we head into busy time – fun-season! With so many festivals and events coming up, it’s going to be a great July!

Our own ship spotter, John Skelson‘s photo exhibit “Tugboats – Workhorses of NY Harbor” opens today 5 July onboard the historic lighthouse tender Lilac moored at Pier 25 in lower Manhattan. Opening reception is Tuesday 8 July from 6-9 pm. Tug Pegasus will be moored next to Lilac Tuesday night, so there will be opportunity for ship tours.


Tug Pegasus. Photo via

City of Water Day, hosted by the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, is coming up next Saturday, 12 July with free boat rides, food, music and exhibits. Check out all the fun happenings at their website here.


Tug Lynx at the Bayonne Bridge. Photo: ©Mitch Waxman

Join us on our next Hidden Harbor Tour® of Port Newark, hosted by the Working Harbor Committee in partnership with Circle Line Sightseeing.  Saturday 19 July, at 11 am. Our 2.5 hour cruise behind the scenes of our great container port terminals, oodles of tugboats at work on the KVK, moving gargantuan infrastructure with ease through our harbor. Reservations can be booked here.


by Mai Armstrong for the Working Harbor Committee

It’s not often, in fact very rarely that I will get out before sunrise; but this past Monday USS Slater was scheduled to leave Caddell Dry Dock and head for home at 0500 hrs.

I dragged myself to my usual spot just east of Caddell’s and was not disappointed. Not only did I photograph Slater, the Kill Van Kull was alive with traffic at sunrise. Here is just a taste of what was happening.

Bayonne Bridge at Dawn. Photo: ©John Skelson

HMS Justice Barge on the Hip Leaving Bayonne. Photo: ©John Skelson

Sabine McAllister, a New Arrival in NY Harbor. Photo: ©John Skelson

Patricia at Sunrise. Photo: ©John Skelson

Kobe Express. Photo: ©John Skelson

Heavy Traffic at the Bayonne Bridge – Maersk Iowa with Gramma Lee and Miriam Moran and Glen Canyon Bridge with Robert E and Ellen McAllister. Photo: ©John Skelson

Emerald Coast. Photo: ©John Skelson

Brenda (a Turecamo) This is Tugboat Painting Time. Photo: ©John Skelson

Resolute with Glen Canyon Bridge. Photo: ©John Skelson

ZIM New York. Photo: ©John Skelson

Lastly, there will be an exhibit of my photos on the Historic Lighthouse Tender “Lilac” opening Saturday July 5, with a reception on Tuesday July 8th from 6-9 PM. The exhibit will be up for the month of July. (Directions to Pier 25.)

Hoping for a dry 4th of July!

All photos by John Skelson, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee

Ed note: A special treat this morning from Ship Spotter, John Skelson who was up and on the KVK earrrrly this morning to bid the USS Slater ‘bon voyage’ as she wound her way up the Kill, headed home to Albany. Thank you, John!

0500 Hrs. 30 June, 2014.

We saw her on dry dock 2 weeks ago on the Hidden Harbor Tour®, and this past Saturday she was in the water sporting her “Dazzle Paint Job”.

Slater left Caddell Dry Dock this morning, June 30, almost on time in great early morning light, before sunrise. Here are a few of the photos… And if the Slater wasn’t enough, the Kill Van Kull was alive with ship traffic… 5 Container Ships and I do not know how many tugs… now to take a nap.

Dry Docked 2 Weeks Ago. ©John Skelson

Back in the Water, this Past Saturday. ©John Skelson

Coming Out of Caddell’s 0520 Hrs. ©John Skelson

Underway. ©John Skelson

Slater with Tugs Margot and Frances. ©John Skelson

A Dazzle-ing Paint Job. ©John Skelson

Outbound in the KVK at the 9 Buoy. ©John Skelson

All Hands on Deck. ©John Skelson

At the Salt Pile. ©John Skelson

Tug Margot. ©John Skelson

Passing ZIM New York. ©John Skelson

Next Stop Albany NY. ©John Skelson

More photos from this morning later this week… Happy spotting… John Skelson

All photos by John Skelson, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee


Weigh anchor! Off we went on the Circle Line Brooklyn, Saturday morning 28 June, on the second Hidden Harbor boat tour sponsored by the Working Harbor Committee this season.

The day was absolutely glorious! Our Captain, Kenneth Corcoron, paused the boat in all the right places and took us on a delightful side trip around Shooters Island. The boat pauses were coordinated with the speakers narrations. Perfect!

We enjoyed opening and closing remarks by Meg Black, and she announced that the tugboat race will take place on Sunday 31 August! The guest speakers, Ed Kelly from the Maritime Association of the Port of NY and NJ and Capt. Margaret Flanagan from the South Street Seaport Museum, were excellent.

Between the two of them we learned extensively about the history of the areas we passed on the tour and about the shipping industry, shipping companies, and even about graving docks! Among the distinguished guests aboard the Brooklyn was Ann Hermes, staff photographer from the Christian Science Monitor.

At the Statue. Photo: ©Phyllis Featherstone

Kayaks in Red Hook. Photo: ©Phyllis Featherstone

Enjoying the Trip. Photo: ©John Skelson

Rachel Marie. Photo: ©John Skelson

Guest speaker Ed Kelly, Executive Director of the Maritime Association of the Port of NY and NJ. Photo: ©John Skelson

Photo Ops. Photo: ©John Skelson

Captain Corcoran. Photo: ©Phyllis Featherstone

Scotty Sky and Pegasus. Photo: ©Phyllis Featherstone

Guest speaker, Captain Margaret Flanagan of the South Street Seaport Museum. Photo: ©Phyllis Featherstone

Moran’s Yard Staten Island. Photo: ©Phyllis Featherstone

Great Day. Photo: ©John Skelson

Turning HS Paris, Laura K, on the bow and Gramma Lee T Moran, stern. Photo: ©John Skelson

Ed Kelly and Meg Black. Photo: ©John Skelson

FDNY Fire Fighter II at the Statue. Photo: ©John Skelson

Thanks to all for a wonderful trip… more photos to follow.

All photos by John Skelson and Phyllis Featherstone, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee

USS Slater which has been here in NY harbor since April, will be leaving our fair waters for home Monday 30 June.

The WWII destroyer escort has been getting MAJOR work done at Caddell’s Dry Dock for the past few months… every inch has been restored, repaired, refurbished, and repainted.

Having this amazing historic vessel in town has put a certain spring in our steps, especially after a long and coold winter.

Hey! That’s Mary Habstritt of the steamer SS Lilac on deck! Photo via USS Slater facebook page

Folks with boats stopped in to visit and folks without boats waited patiently for WHC’s Hidden Harbor Tour to get a good glimpse of Slater in dry dock as the cruise motored up the KVK.

USS Slater at Caddell’s. Photo: ©Mitch Waxman

USS Slater paint job close up. Photo: ©John Skelson

Now shes’s all dressed up in her new razzle dazzle colors and is ready to make her return journey to her home berth in Albany.

Razzle-Dazzle! Photo: ©John Skelson

From USS Slater’s facebook page:

USS SLATER is expected to depart Caddell’s in Staten Island at 0500 hours Monday, June 30th. The ship should be passing West Point at 1300 hours and the Walkway Over the Hudson at 1600 hours. These estimates are subject to many variables including, but not limited to, actual time of departure, actual maintained speed, and marine traffic. Please keep in mind that, where travel on the Hudson is concerned, nothing is ever definite. The best places to view SLATER are public parks and recreation areas along the Hudson River.

There is a strong possibility that radio operators will be aboard SLATER. The approved frequencies for communication are CB channel 15 – 27.135 MHz, GMRS channel 15 – 462.7125 MHz, FRS channel 7 – 462.7125 MHz, Marine channel 72 – 156.625 MHz, and Ham 146.52 Mhz.

USS Slater’s trying to hit 5,000 likes on their facebook page before they head home. Let’s show our support by heading over right now to click that ‘like” button!

Have awesome shots of the working harbor? Share your photos with us! Add them to the Working Harbor Committee Photo Pool.

by Mai Armstrong for the Working Harbor Committee



I’ve been away from NY Harbor for about a week now spending some time in Saratoga Springs. I am really looking forward to getting back to the water.

For this week, here are some more photos of Working Harbor Committee’s first Hidden Harbor Tour of the season on Circle Line.

Caitlin Ann. Photo by ©John Skelson

Charles D McAllister. Photo by ©John Skelson

Explorer of the Seas at Bayonne Cruise Port. Photo by ©John Skelson

Fireboat Alfred E Smith spare boat acting Marine Co. #1. Photo by ©John Skelson

Haggerty Girls and Crew Boat Grace D. Photo by ©John Skelson

Houma in her new color scheme. Photo by ©John Skelson

Fireboat John J Harvey. Photo by ©John Skelson

LW Caddell. Photo by ©John Skelson

Mary Alice. Photo by ©John Skelson

Morgan Reinauer at Caddell Dry Dock. Photo by ©John Skelson

NYPD’s New Scuba Team boat. Photo by ©John Skelson

Sea Bear headed for Newtown Creek. Photo by ©John Skelson

Hope to see everyone on Saturdays tour.

Saturday 28 June Hidden Harbor Tour
departs from Pier 83, West 42nd Street and 12th Ave
Boarding @ 10:30 a.m. -  Cruising 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

All photos by John Skelson, generously shared with the Working Harbor Committee

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Follow me on Twitter

Post Archives



Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,729 other followers

%d bloggers like this: