For a Change…

…a post without Matson ships!

After a quiet Sunday morning doing mundane household stuff, it was off to the harbor to do some ship spotting (what else is new).

The schedule indicated that a ship called Moneyball was arriving after noon. Curious name. It sounded like some mega-yacht, but a Google search revealed it was a cargo vessel.

Hokulani passed by while I was waiting:


A plume of smoke in the distance indicated that the Makakilo brush fire was still going:

brush fire still going

Moneyball with Pi‘ilani and Mikioi:


I was fortunate to be invited (unplanned) to go out on the pilot boat. :D

Tanker Polar Resolution at the offshore anchorage:

Polar Resolution

It’s always something to see these big gals up close!

Back to the harbor and more of Moneyball at Pier 11 with Pi‘ilani:

Piilani and Moneyball stern

Her old name Pacific Tramp is still quite visible on her hull.

Kawika and Pauwela at Pier 19:

Kawika and Pauwela

Sand Island bridge:

Sand Island bridge

Moving Pauwela on to the trailer:

Pauwela on to trailer

Recently, I’ve been posting quite a bit about Horizon Lines ships. For whatever reason, their schedule has been more photo friendly.

Horizon Enterprise was arriving just around sunset.

Heading out on board Kawika:

heading out on Kawika

A different view of Polar Resolution:

Polar Resolution sunset

Horizon Enterprise with Diamond Head in the background:

Horizon Enterprise Diamond Head

Horizon Enterprise

Heading in, passing by H buoy (with boobies):

H buoy with boobies

Back in the harbor:

Horizon Enterprise in harbor

At the pier:

Horizon Enterprise at pier

Moneyball on the way back to Pier 19:

Moneyball at night

Thanks to Captains Dorflinger, Brown, and Baker. Special thanks to Paul for a great day!

In my previous post, I forgot to mention that it was great to see that the fairy tern chick in the breadfruit tree by FOC has fledged. Good luck little one!

Spring Line

The main task on Saturday was to replace the worn spring line before it failed.

Only two strands left:

worn spring line

I was asked if I had a plan.


Of course I did. I had made measurements and had surveyed the lines we had on the pier for a suitable replacement last week, when I noticed the problem. I knew we needed chafing gear (which I had at the ready) and stoppers (had prepared some a while ago but they had been used for other purposes, so had to prepare a new one). If I hadn’t thought of these things, who would have?

Oh, and, yes, traditional tools rock! In the old days, sailors didn’t have fancy electric tools and they managed to get things done.

Large spike used to work shoreside bowline loose:

large spike

The “new” line with chafing gear:

line replaced

It still needs some adjusting, but I was fairly satisfied with the result.

The other spring line that runs through the same chock should probably be changed as well, as it is pretty worn.

It was too hot to do much more, so I had lunch and whipped the ends of my new stopper in the cool comfort of the deck house on the poop deck.

I wasn’t in a hurry to go home, so I hung around to take photos.

Smoke from the large brush fire:

brush fire smoke

Cute Maersk containers on Mokihana:

cute Maersk containers

Go engines! Horizon Spirit:

Horizon Spirit

The tanker, Densa Orca, was scheduled to arrive in the harbor just before sunset. I went over to the park between Piers 5 and 6 to get pics.

Mamo backing and Mikioi heading out:

Mamo and Mikioi

Unfortunately, Pride of America was scheduled to leave about the same time. Densa Orca had to remain offshore. Meh. Delay.

Mamo, Mikioi, and Pi‘ilani returning to the harbor, with Densa Orca in the distance:

tugs returning

Mamo and Pi‘ilani:

Mamo and Piilani

Egrets heading off to roost for the night:

egrets going to roosting site

Okay. Hurry up and leave already!

Pride of America

Coast Guard boat escort:

Coast Guard boat escort

Practice or some Homeland Security requirement?

Sun going down!


Mikioi heading out again:


Pride of America finally out of the harbor with Mikioi, Pi‘ilani, and Tira Lani heading out to assist Densa Orca:

three tugs and a cruise ship

As it was getting dark, I decided to go home rather than wait for Densa Orca. :(

San Francisco (Tuesday, August 12) – Last Day

The last day of my vacation arrived all too soon. My flight home was early in the afternoon, so I had some time to kill.

Morning light on the Golden Gate Bridge:

morning light on Golden Gate bridge

A series of gull photos:

gulls on the beach

gull walking away

gull portrait

gull marine debris

More ship spotting…

CMA CGM Centaurus:

CMA CGM Centaurus

Pichincha, which arrived the same day I did, heading out to sea:


Interesting that the US Army Corps of Engineers has boats.

John AB Dillard, Jr:

John AB Dillard Jr

Hanjin Hamburg:

Hanjin Hamburg

Fishing boat Mya Nicole with hopeful seagulls:

Mya Nicole

What not to eat:

fish sign

Great blue heron:

great blue heron

Eppleton Hall:

Eppleton Hall

Ferry arch at Pier 43:

ferry arch pier 43

Tracks leading up to the arch:

tracks at pier 43

Jeremiah O’Brien:

Jeremiah O'Brien

Piles at Pier 41:

piles pier 41 2

piles pier 41 1

Sticker art:

stickers pier 41

Pilot boat Golden Gate:

pilot boat Golden Gate

I stopped by the Musée Méchanique. It’s a coin operated arcade full of a lot of antique machines. Fascinating, but also a bit creepy at times.

Here’s one machine with a maritime theme, which invites you to “Laugh with Jolly Jack”:

Jolly Jack

Jolly Jack detail

More sticker art:


Time ball at the SFMNHP Visitor Center:

time ball

I wish I could have wandered around a bit more, but it was time to say goodbye and head off to the airport.

San Francisco (Monday, August 11)

I had intended to swing by the SUP building (having passed it while a passenger in my friend’s car) first thing in the morning to get a closer look at it. A late start and a glance at squashed that idea.

Ooo Manoa arrival! Time to make my way back to the waterfront. (Yes, I am a sad ship geek.)

I found the solar powered MUNI bus stop shelters fascinating:

bus shelter

We need stuff like this here in Hawai‘i.

I got off the bus and waited for a cable car.

One going in the opposite direction from where I wanted to go:

cable car

I know. Touristy. But, hey, it’s fun!

Across the street from Hyde Street Pier:

across the street from Hyde St Pier

Sadly, the Park store is no longer there in the building on the corner. I remember happily stocking up on nautical books when I visited while it was still open. It’s a shame, really.

And…there’s Manoa!

Manoa Golden Gate Bridge


I’m so used to seeing her in Honolulu Harbor, it’s nice to see her in San Francisco Bay for a change. (It’s that perspective thing.)

I had quite a bit of time before my 1300 appointment at the Research Center, so I lingered to do more ship spotting.

APL Philippines:

APL Philippines

USCGC Bertholf:

USCGC Bertholf

Sirius Voyager:

Sirius Voyager

Seal (as opposed to sea lion) spotting:


On the way to get something to eat, I stopped at the Aquatic Park Bathhouse building to see if there was anything new. On the street level, some things had been moved around. There was also an exhibit on the history of the U.S. Customs Service.

The upper floor was still sadly underutilized. Apart from the radio exhibit, there was only a display of some photos related to the America’s Cup (not my cup of tea).

Some details:

wheel light fixture

Plimsoll line on pillar

davits on pillar

After lunch, it was a short and pleasant walk over to Fort Mason, for the “work” part of my trip. I went to check out what FOC materials the NPS has. I must say the three hours I was there went by all too quickly.

One of the reference photos (not the greatest because of my shadow) I was allowed to take with the fancy phone:

FOC pic sample

Building E at the Fort Mason complex:

Fort Mason Bldg E

The stern of the brigantine Galilee in the parking lot area:

brigantine Galilee

After leaving Fort Mason, I went back to Hyde Street Pier.

Crane for the work being done on the pier:

crane for pier work

Shhhhhhhh…One of the highlights of my vacation was being allowed to go aboard Eppleton Hall or “Eppie,” as she is fondly called.


frames 1

frames 2

Consett mark on frame



The familiar-looking details were strangely comforting.

CA Thayer (ongoing work):

CA Thayer


Balclutha bow

Another shot showing repairs (doubler plates) to the hull:

Balclutha repairs to hull

San Francisco and Oakland (Sunday, August 10) – Lots of Cranes

A mello day that started off in the Potrero Point area.

Sheila Ann:

Sheila Ann

USNS Wally Schirra in the BAE dry dock:

USNS Wally Schirra

Lihue laid up nearby:



crane 1

crane 2

Altered sign, should read “Public Shore”:

Pauly Shore

A former navy tug, Dekaury (YTB-178) between Piers 48 and 50:

tug Dekaury YTB-178 btwn P 48 50

Tug fenders on shore:

tug fenders

From there, it was over the bridge to Oakland.

Middle Harbor Shoreline Park is located amidst Oakland’s container terminals. It has an odd industrial feel, sort of like Sand Island State Park. It’s also a ship spotter’s dream.

Looking toward Potrero Point (spot the dry dock and Lihue) from the park:

twds Potrero Point and Hill Dogpatch area

Distinctive skyline:

San Francisco

TraPac Terminal:

Oakland Cranes

Ben E. Nutter Terminal:

Oakland cranes 1

Oakland International Container Terminal:

Oakland cranes 2

NYK Atlas at the Oakland International Terminal with Matsonia just visible through the cranes at left:

Matsonia NYK Atlas

The park is also a designated wildlife area.



Unfortunately, there are a lot of Canada geese gathered in the park:

Canada goose

A lot of geese means a lot of geese poo. Ick.

Sticker art and donuts:

sticker art

(If you look at the Google Maps satellite view of the area, you can see the donuts more clearly.)

From the park, it was on to the Oakland Museum of California. It is a very nice museum that consists of three main galleries: Art, History, and Natural Science.

Joe at Oakland Museum

Marine debris display and activity area:

Oakland Museum marine debris exhibit 1

Oakland Museum marine debris exhibit 2

There was a lot to see, but not enough time! Well worth visiting again.