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Monthly Archives: August 2014

This past week the longtime owner and tour guide at Dells Mill passed away. Gus Clark could be found at the mill every day from May to October. He would be dressed in his civil War uniform giving tours of the mill and entertaining visitors with song and stories. The status of the Mill is still undecided but it will remain open weekends through October.


We’ve had a number of very humid days and when I woke up in the morning the windows were covered with condensation. I have a large patch of Black-eyed Susans growing outside one of my windows so I took the opportunity to photograph them through the condensation.




I has several days to walk around Canal Park in Duluth so I managed to come up with some different photographs.

On the first morning I had gotten up to photograph the sunrise. Although the view to the east was not that great there were some nice clouds just off of the Park Point Beach that generated some nice colors.Sunrise-Lake-Superior-14-8-_1773

The second morning there wasn’t much of a sunrise so I decided to take some photographs of the harbor lights. In this one I set the camera to a long exposure and then slowly zoomed my lens.Duluth-Dock-Lights-14-8-_2379

I met a couple of Paddleboarders down by the Waterfront Plaza Marina. I started talking with them as they paddled by. The woman had a friend on the paddleboard with Paddleboarder-and-Friend-14-8-_2469her.

It was one of the few nice days I had on my last trip to Duluth so I stopped in Canal Park to watch the kids chase the birds. This little girl had found a feather and was throwing it up into the air and watching it sail away.Throwing-Feathers-14-8-_2477

When I’m in Duluth I can’t happen but notice the sport fishing fleet as in heads out of and into the harbor. The fleet gathers on the harbor side of the Aerial Lift Bridge at sunrise. When the Lift Bridge rises they usually head out through the Ship Canal in mass. I usually try to be on the end of one of the breakwaters so I can get a photo of them heading out into the sunrise.Going-Fishing-14-8-_2271

They usually come back to the docks around eleven thirty in the morning. If I’m in the area I try to be at the docks to see if they had any success.Days-Catch-14-8-_2079

Around one thirty in the afternoon they head back out with their afternoon clients. They return again around five thirty.Fishing-Fleet-14-8-_2352


A couple of weeks ago there was an article in the Duluth New Tribune about a new locally owned boat company that is building a hybrid boat. The Hull is aluminum and the rest of the boat is made of wood. Two of their boats can be seen at Canal Park Boat Rental which is located next to the blue bridge in Waterfront Plaza Marina. They are on the pricy side, running 35-40 thousand dollars.Canal-Park-Boat-Rental-14-8-_2521


I was watching this sail boat come through the Ship Canal. The sail was up but they weren’t moving very fast. It didn’t sound like their engine was working. All of a sudden I noticed that everyone grabbed a paddle and started frantically paddling.Paddlers-14-8-_2496

Turns out the Mesabi Miner was headed out through the Ship Canal.Mesabi-Miner-14-8-_2497

So far this summer I’ve not had good luck in my ship watching endeavors. I’ve been to Duluth a number of times but either there were not many ships coming in or they came in during the night or I missed them. This past week I had a very successful day watching ships. I don’t know if eight ships is a record or not but it was the most that I can remember.

It all started just before sunrise when the Paul R. Tregurtha came under the Aerial Lift Bridge. A short time later the Joseph L. Block came down the harbor.

Paul R. Tregurtha

Paul R. Tregurtha

Joseph L. Block

Joseph L. Block


After the Block exited through the Duluth Ship Canal I went for a walk down the Park Point Beach. After a couple of miles I noticed a ship was heading for Duluth so I returned to Park Point and watched the Baie Comeau sail under the Lift Bridge.

Baie Comeau

Baie Comeau

The Mesabi Miner was scheduled to exit Duluth Harbor within the next hour but I decided to stop at the newly opened Endion Public House in Canal Park for an early lunch. In the middle of a cold one I saw the Miner heading out into Lake Superior.

Late in the afternoon I headed back down to the Waterfront Plaza to watch the fishing boats come in from their afternoon trip. While I was watching them I noticed another ship heading into the Harbor. It was the Algolake. About the same time the American Mariner headed out under the Lift Bridge.



American Mariner

American Mariner

I knew that several more ships were schedule to exit the harbor early in the evening so I walked back home for a quick snack. Sure enough I had just gotten home when I notice another ship had pulled away from the docks. A quick hike down to the Harbor and I setup to watch the CSL Tadoussac head toward the Lift Bridge. I was in such a hurry to get down to watch the ship that I didn’t realize that a big storm was coming over the hills above Duluth. There were a few sprinkles in the harbor but it looked to be raining to the northeast. About the same time I noticed a rainbow forming over the Lift Bridge.

CLS Tadoussac

CLS Tadoussac

Right behind the Tadoussac was the Baie-Comeau. There was a beautiful rainbow over the Baie Comeau as it exited the harbor. The Baie Comeau had arrived mid morning and made a quick turnaround. It loaded Tackonite and stopped at the fueling station to take on fuel before exiting the harbor less than 12 hours after arriving. The ships seem to be making a quick turnaround this summer in an attempt to make up for the time lost during the terrible spring.

Baie Comeau

Baie Comeau

I was up at sunrise to photograph the sunrise from the South Breakwater just outside Duluth Harbor. I usually like to photograph the sunrise from the South Breakwater because if any ships come in or go out I have good backlight to photograph them.

As the sun started to rise I could see the Alpena steaming toward Duluth with a load of cement.-Alpena-14-8-_1708a

As I watched the Alpena I heard the Lift Bridge going up and the Algolake heading out of the harbor under the Lift Bridge.Algolake-14-8-_1732

The Alpena had to change course and wait for the Algolake to clear the shipping canal before resuming its trip into the harbor.-Alpena-14-8-_1735a

The Alpena and Algolake passed out on the lake.Algolake-and-Alpena-14-8-_1752

I found a beautiful flower garden on Park Point and was able to photograph the Alpena as it entered the harbor with the flowers in the foreground. -Alpena-14-8-_1810


A couple of years ago I wrote a post describing how I go about photographing raindrops when it’s not raining out. Just about every summer since I’ve gone out when the flowers are blooming in the prairie and to replicate the experience. These are a few shots from this summer.




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