|Sharon paddles along the break wall, past a light marking the entrance to the Calumet channel.|
But there's one type of boat we're always happy to see: Great Lakes freighters. These monumental vessels remind us that Chicago owes its existence to the convenience of sending cargo by sea, and that its maritime role extends to this day.
Today we paddled down toward the heavy industrial area on Chicago's far south side. While eating lunch at Calumet Park, we saw the Philip R. Clarke as she approached the Calumet River. We knew she was coming long before we saw her because her captain announced her arrival an hour in advance on channel 16, which we monitor any time we are near or crossing shipping channels. So we paddled out to a nearby buoy to watch her turn once to get into the channel, then a second time so she could back into the river.
|The Philip R. Clarke and the Avocet LV.|
We stopped to take pictures, of course.
|Alec brings out the serious camera.|
|The 767-foot freighter, capable of hauling more than 25,000 tons of cargo.|