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Category Archives: Pilot Boat

I’m always looking to find different ships when they arrive in Duluth. This past weekend the Virginiaborg a ship registered in the Netherlands arrived in Duluth. I had been watching it on my Marine Tracker as it approached and headed down to the harbor to watch it come in. I was disappointed when it veered out of the approach lane and dropped it anchor. I was encouraged a short time later when the Pilot Boat went out to the ship. I waited around and soon the Pilot Boat returned with more people on board than when it went out. After waiting around for a while I went into the Marine Center to see what was happening.


It turns out that all foreign ships that come into the great lakes take on a pilot to guide them through the great lakes. When the  Virginiaborg anchored outside the harbor the Pilot Boat went out to pick up the pilot because the ship was not going to dock until the next day.


I had hoped to watch the ship come into the harbor but it came in late in the evening. I watched from the condo as it move back out into the lake and then turned to enter the harbor. Unfortunately it was too dark for photos.


More photos from Canal Park can be found on my website.

There was still a bit of ice in the shipping canal. The week before so much ice had blown in from out in the lake that nine ships were anchored outside the harbor entrance waiting to get in. The ice breaker had to be called to open up the shipping canal.


We happened to be in Canal Park when the Mesabi Miner came into port and left port. The ship’s captain gave out a call to those watching to enjoy the beautiful day. It was a rare April day in Duluth. The same crew member was on the bow waving to the crowd on both days.



There had been a full moon a couple of days before. The moon was just setting over the Duluth Lift Bridge in the early morning.


There was a ship anchored outside the harbor. At sunrise the pilot boat headed out to the ship. I was able to get a photo of it a little later in the morning when it returned to the harbor.


This was taken the end of April. Duluth had received more snow in April than in any month in history. There was one blizzard after another. This was one of the first nice days in all of April. I doubt too many folks in Florida would be on the beach with snow still around.


Fishing season was open. The North Breakwater was closed but the South Breakwater was open so the fisherman could get out for the opening of the season. No one was having any luck and shortly after the photo was taken most of them gave up.