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Monday, May 20, 2013

A Tight Squeeze On The Great Lakes

This picture was taken last year, 2012; I think it was towards the end of July. I think the Great Lakes freighter nearest me is an Algoma Central freighter, and the far one may be a Canadian Steamship Lines (CSL) freighter. Both are heading upstream, north up the St. Clair River. Beyond them is Squirrel Island, Canada, which is part of Bkejwanong or Walpole Island Reserve, which is unceded territory occupied by the Walpole Island First Nation.

I noticed the Algoma vessel coming up river and heading directly at me - a very unusual angle. By its direction and speed, it soon became clear it was going to pass the CSL freighter, which it proceded to do.

I have not seen this manoeuver in the St Clair River - which is not all that large a strait between Lake Huron and Lake St Clair - since the 1960s, when freighter were by and large a bit smaller than the present day.

My sister-in-law had her cell phone, and she got a few shots.
It may be the last time I shall ever see that particular juxtaposition of freighters, given reducing lake levels... which is something we do not read about much nationally, but the Great Lakes are at low levels, and have been for an unusually long time. Lake Superior is supposed to increase by 1 inch this year - which is an enormous amount of water given the surface area of Lake Superior - but that is not enough to appreciably change lake levels in Lakes Huron and Michigan and points south.


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