Port of Mobile Tour

May 20, 2015

12  comments

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-10I’m not in the Eastern Shore Camera Club, but everyone else in my family is. That’s why I got to tag along with the group on their sunset cruise of the Mobile River which included an up close look at something I’ve always wanted to see – the Port of Mobile.

 

 

osprey-educational-boat-tour-banner-670x300The cruise was through Delta Safaris which operates large pontoon – style tour boats throughout the Mobile Delta, Mobile Bay and Gulf of Mexico waterways. The photo above is from their web site (HERE).

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-26We met the boat at Blue Gill Restaurant on the Causeway, and it took us through the bay, right next to the USS Alabama, then up into the river where all the shipping action happens.

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-15There’s so much to see and learn about dry docks, oil rigs, commercial ships and the coolest thing ever . . .

 

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-18the Navy’s new LCS, or Littoral Combat Ship “Littoral” means the shallow part of the water near the shore, which is where the modern-day pirates hide so our older Navy ships can’t catch them. Not any more. These ships can kick pirate butt and are made right here by Austal, which by the way, someone told me their name stands for “AUSTralia – ALabama.” Since their home base is Australia. That seems to make sense, so I believe them. (That’s a little extra for my new reader, Suzanne in Australia!).

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-20Here’s a LCS still under construction inside the assembly bay, or boat barn, ship shack, or whatever it’s called.

 

 

Launch_of_USS_Gabrielle_Giffords_(LCS-10)_in_February_2015-2Here’s a photo of the USS Gabrielle Giffords which was christened in February. If you were a no-good pirate holding hostages and saw this coming at you, I think you’d quickly reconsider your career choice.

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-1You should have seen all the camera equipment on our tour. We passed a few families enjoying their day on the Bay, and it was as if the paparazzi was following Taylor Swift. Those poor people didn’t know what in the world was going on, but waved and smiled, nonetheless.

 

IMG_9434The camera club members are all so supportive of one another and have a great time learning and developing their skills. “Developing.” That’s a little photography joke.

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-17This is the new Maritime Museum in the foreground which will open sometime . . . soon. We hope. It’s taken a while and everyone is anxious to see it.

 

ESCC_Sunset_Cruise-14Before 9-11, ships from the around the world would dock here for a month or so, and while in dry dock, the crews would enjoy the fun life in Mobile. Since the terrorist attacks, all crew members are now required to remain on board during the ship’s stay. I think that would be horrible way to see the world.

 

Mobile DeltaI decided to leave my real camera at home since my husband had his along, so I only had my iphone 6, which was completely dorky in the midst of all the camera experts, but guess who ended up getting some pretty good shots? The photo above and these last few are from my iphone:

 

RSA from the RiverWe stopped close to this area and were told we were directly over the Wallace Tunnel. I’m already freaked out about driving through the tunnel, and our guide didn’t help any when he said the tunnel was only 40 feet below us, and some of the ships have a 35 foot draft. That’s a little too close for my liking.

 

men on oil rigI was able to zoom in to get this shot of the two men on the oil rig. Like the other ships, it was in dry dock for some sort of repair or maintenance issue.

 

BaywayReturning home between the two spans of the I-10 Bayway. Such a fabulous new view of a place I’ve passed a thousand times before, but never seen it like this.

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Now, I’m trying to figure out how to get a ride on a LCS! Anybody got the phone number for the U.S. Navy?

 

 

    • I think seeing the LCS was my favorite thing on the tour. And I was also thrilled we didn’t see any alligators. Those are mainly in the Delta tour.

  • This looks like a fun adventure to sign up for while visiting the coast, one I haven’t done. We love visiting Mobile and I will sure want to visit the museum when it opens, I have a little grandson I just bet will love that too. Enjoyed seeing all the familiar scenery and sure makes me want to head south for sand, surf and seafood!

    • I took my son on the Delta Explorer trip when he was in the sixth grade, but all of these tours are suitable for children of all ages. A great family experience.

  • I hate that tunnel, and now I don’t know if I will be able to go through it anymore. This was so interesting. Ray’s grandfather on his mother’s side was a merchant seaman for a number of years. (They were from Gulfport.) It would be a bummer to have to stay on a ship in port if you signed up to see the world. You DID get some great photos with your iPhone. That is a serious camera that lady in blue is holding!

    • Not only did they all have fierce looking camera equipment, but they were using it like pros. National Geographic has nothing on them!

      Neat story about Ray’s grandfather. Nice you know the family history.

  • Thanks for the wonderful Bay tour and in such pretty weather! It’s sad those sailors can’t visit beautiful Mobile. Another loss of our freedom.

  • Note to self: never drive through the Wallace Tunnel. Five feet of clearance is all?!?! That doe not seem like much margin for error. What a fascinating tour of Mobile Bay. It reminds me a lot of San Diego Bay with the Navy presence and shipping docks of all kinds. But that LCS ship building operation – how cool is that?! I would love to see it up close and in person!

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