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Soo Locks to open at noon Wednesday, March 24

3/10 - Sault Ste. Marie, MI – According to a release from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Soo Locks will open for the season at noon March 24. This is 12 hours earlier than originally announced. Soo Locks Park will be open, and the observation platform will also be open at limited capacity. The Visitor Center will not be open at this time.

St. Marys River spring ice breaking operations underway

3/10 - Sault Ste. Marie, MI – On Tuesday, the Coast Guard starts breaking ice in the lower St. Marys River in preparation for the Great Lakes commercial shipping season.

Initially the icebreaking activity will focus on the lower St. Marys River, south of Munuscong Lake and the Middle Neebish Channel north and east of Neebish Island. By Saturday, the Coast Guard will extend their icebreaking activity into the southern half of the West Neebish Channel, working from Mud Lake Junction Light north to the south end of the Rock Cut. The Coast Guard will not disturb the ice north of the Neebish Island ferry crossing or south of West Neebish Channel Light 45.

In the coming weeks, as the March 24 scheduled opening of the Sault Locks approaches, ice breaking activities will encompass all navigable waters of the St. Marys River. Recreational users of the ice are advised to plan their activities carefully, use caution near the ice and stay away from charted navigation areas.

Port Reports - March 10

St. Marys River – Know Your Ships

Tanker Algonova was downbound early Tuesday afternoon from the Purvis Dock in the lower harbor. Before leading her down the river, USCG Neah Bay broke out the east approach to the locks and worked the ice track around Frechette Point.

Milwaukee, WI – MKE Marine Reports

No marine traffic at Milwaukee Tuesday (03/09), and none is currently expected.

Goderich, ON – Bruce Douglas

Algoma Intrepid cleared 10.57 pm Monday upbound for Chicago with salt.

Lake Erie Ports – Bill Kloss

Nanticoke: Algoterra arrived the Port Dover anchorage Monday night and went to Imperial Oil at 09:46 Tuesday morning. Algocanada departed for Sarnia at 09:33.

Today in Great Lakes History - March 10

CHARLES E. WILSON (Hull#710) was launched March 10, 1973, at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin by Bay Shipbuilding Corp., for American Steamship Co. Renamed b.) JOHN J. BOLAND in 2000.

The ADAM E. CORNELIUS, built by the Great Lakes Engineering Works (Hull#53) in 1908, was renamed b.) DETROIT EDISON on March 10, 1948. In 1954, she was renamed c.) GEORGE F. RAND and in 1962, the RAND was sold to Canadian registry and renamed d.) AVONDALE. She was scrapped at Castellon, Spain in 1979.

FORT HENRY (Hull#150) was launched March 10, 1955, at Collingwood, Ontario by Collingwood Shipyards Ltd., for Canada Steamship Lines Ltd.

KINSMAN VENTURE was launched March 10, 1906, as a.) JOHN SHERWIN (Hull#617) at West Bay City, Michigan by West Bay City Ship Building Co.

On 10 March 1881, the propellers MORLEY and A. L. HOPKINS were purchased by the Wabash Railroad Company from the Morley Brothers of Marine City, Michigan.

The N. K. FAIRBANK (wooden freighter, 205 foot, 980 gross tons, built in 1874, at Marine City, Michigan) was sold by Morley & Morse to Captain H. Hastings on 10 March 1884.

The tug RIVER QUEEN sank at her dock in Port Huron, Michigan during the night of 10 March 1885. She was raised the following day and one of her seacocks was discovered to have been open that caused her to fill with water.

CADILLAC (steel ferry, 161 foot, 636 gross tons) was launched on 10 March 1928, by the Great Lakes Engineering Works in River Rouge, Michigan (Hull #260) for the Detroit & Windsor Ferry Company. The ferry company claimed that she was the largest and most powerful ferry in North American waters. When she was launched, the Ambassador Bridge and the tunnel, which connects Detroit and Windsor, were being constructed. She was placed in service on 25 April 1928, and had a varied history. From 1940 to 1942, she ran as a Bob-lo steamer. In 1942, she was sold to the U. S. Coast Guard and renamed b.) ARROWWOOD (WAGL 176) and used as an icebreaker. She was rebuilt in 1946, renamed c.) CADILLAC, and served as a passenger vessel on Lake Erie. At the end of the 1947 season, she was tied up to the dock for use as a restaurant. She went through a couple of owners until she finally arrived at the scrappers' dock in Hamilton, Ontario on May 26, 1962 for breaking up.

In 2000, the HARMONIOUS, a Panamanian freighter dating from 1977, visited the Great Lakes in 1978 and returned on several occasions through 1986. It was lost on the Arabian Sea as c) KASTOR TOO while traveling from Aqaba, Jordan, to Visakhapatnam, India, with a cargo of phosphate on March 10, 2000. The crew of 18 were rescued by the nearby container ship MILDBURG.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

Icebreaking tugs expected Wednesday in Bay of Quinte and Picton Bay

3/9 - Picton, ON – McKeil Marine Ltd. is alerting residents and visitors to Picton that they have arranged for icebreaking tug services in the Bay of Quinte and Picton Bay areas on Wednesday, to permit the transit of their cement carrier vesselMcKeil Spirit.

Members of the public should also be aware that marine operations are expected to continue in and around the Bay of Quinte and Picton Bay areas on March 11 and 12. To facilitate icebreaking operations and ensure public safety, it is requested that all recreational users of the ice – pedestrians, fishers, snowmobilers, all-terrain vehicle

Before resuming recreational activity on the ice, it is recommended to exercise extreme caution as the ice will remain unstable after icebreaking operations are completed.

McKeil Spirit will depart Toronto on the morning of March 10. She will round Sodus Point on Lake Ontario and head north to the Bay of Quinte, at approximately 6 p.m., before continuing westward to Picton Terminals, arriving close to 9 p.m. This same day (March 10), any time after 9 a.m., support tugs will be breaking ice to create a safe passage for the McKeil Spirit. Tugs will come from the deep east in the Bay of Quinte and then move westward towards the shipping lane and Picton Terminal docks.

McKeil Marine