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Old 09-07-2010, 08:43   #1
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Schooner 'Alabama' Aground in Mystic River

The schooner Alabama of Vineyard Haven ran aground in the Mystic River Wednesday night.

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Old 09-07-2010, 08:49   #2
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She was freed Thursday evening. This photo shows a failed attempt on Wednesday.
More photos here, here, and here.

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Old 09-07-2010, 15:39   #3
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Having sailed up the Mystic river a few weeks ago to attend the Mystic wooden boat show, I'm not surprised. At low tide, there is barely 6-7 feet in the channel in some places. I'm curious as to how they are going to get the Charles W. Morgan out in 2013, when she is scheduled to visit New Bedford after current hull repars are completed.
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Old 09-07-2010, 16:23   #4
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I heard them on the VHF all day Wednesday, too bad they were almost out of the river and in the clear when they ran aground.

Here is a link to the local rag:


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Old 09-07-2010, 20:03   #5
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That ship is aground outside the West entrance into Noank - not really in the Mystic river. They were squeaking it past there during low tide. Not exactly shallow - there should have been 13-14' of depth there at low tide. Problem for everyone else is that that entrance into Noank is narrow and blocked for everyone else. There is another entrance, but you have to go out and around some shoals to get to it.

Don't know where it was going after that - it does get shallow further up river. One or two large ships a year go aground in this area trying to get up to Mystic Seaport.

Grounding in the river is no problem - mud. Grounding where this ship did is a lot of granite...

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Old 09-07-2010, 20:53   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colemj View Post
That ship is aground outside the West entrance into Noank - not really in the Mystic river. They were squeaking it past there during low tide. Not exactly shallow - there should have been 13-14' of depth there at low tide. Problem for everyone else is that that entrance into Noank is narrow and blocked for everyone else. There is another entrance, but you have to go out and around some shoals to get to it.

Don't know where it was going after that - it does get shallow further up river. One or two large ships a year go aground in this area trying to get up to Mystic Seaport.

Grounding in the river is no problem - mud. Grounding where this ship did is a lot of granite...

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A couple of things:
She did not run aground at low tide. This is what she looked like at low tide:
SOUNDBOUNDER: Alabama Aground IV

The ship had visited Mystic Seaport and was leaving when she ran aground.

The channel was not blocked. Large ships such as the Mystic Whaler were able to pass. Only during the attempt to free her on Wednesday night was the channel blocked; and that was just for a short amount of time.

Finally, the keel was inspected today and she left this evening.
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Old 09-07-2010, 21:51   #7
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Wow, tough to take 12' of draft up the Mystic River to the Seaport. Glad it wasn't my boat! Glad to hear the channel stayed open - it is only ~300' wide there and the pic looks like the boat laid across it.

Love your picture of Ford's Soundbounder - best place to get block ice!

Enjoy the sailing season - I miss the summers up there, but not the winters!

Mark

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Old 10-07-2010, 07:06   #8
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Wow, tough to take 12' of draft up the Mystic River to the Seaport. Glad it wasn't my boat! Glad to hear the channel stayed open - it is only ~300' wide there and the pic looks like the boat laid across it.

Love your picture of Ford's Soundbounder - best place to get block ice!

Enjoy the sailing season - I miss the summers up there, but not the winters!

Mark

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Fords is great!!!
It's funny, I put that avatar up around Christmas, and forget to ever change it back, but I get so many comments about it.

Enjoy your sailing as well! Always good to meet someone originally from these waters
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Old 10-07-2010, 07:11   #9
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Whoops, forgot to mention one other thing:

In the photo with the tug, I shot it from over near the Morgan Point Lighthouse. I've got my back to the lighthouse and I'm zooming in, looking northeast. The Alabama is facing north/south (approximately).

Hope that gives you some perspective.

CHEERS!!!
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Old 11-07-2010, 06:31   #10
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Kind of a blast from the past seeing Fords, hung out at Oran's (SP?) often, BSing with all the locals. Capt Willber used to keep the Star of Noank there, beautiful boat. I lived in Noank for many years, I ran the old Abbotts cannery and the lobster pound in the winter and also worked for Ernie in the summer at the "Lobster in the Rough". I lived in the little grey house (at least it was grey then) on Ernie's property, what a great place to live. Great view of the Ocean from there. I really miss that area.. I would have had a great view of the grounding from there.

Sorry did not mean to get off topic, Noank has a lot of memories for me... Thanks.
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Old 12-07-2010, 16:23   #11
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Having navigated that river aboard a vessel drawing 11.5', there is very little margin for error. The Alabama is a great boat and it is too bad to see her aground but the way these vessels are constructed, she should be fine. Hopefully they don't have any splinters now on the worm shoe to catch pot buoys.
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Old 13-07-2010, 11:39   #12
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The tug Gwendolyn pulling her free on Thursday evening

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Old 14-07-2010, 06:44   #13
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Afterwards, they did a sea trial and divers inspected the keel for damage

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