Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Chicago Fireboat & Tour of Sturgeon Bay

The most enjoyable commercial boat trip taken thus far has to be the Door County Fireboat Cruise aboard The Fred A. Busse. She’s docked at the Door County Maritime Museum and cruises the entire Sturgeon Bay; departing by the downtown bridge, going first to Green Bay, and then back-tracking to Lake Michigan through the canal.

The Fred A. Busse (Photo taken from website)

The Fred A. Busse served the Chicago Fire Department for many years, and was built in Bay City MI in 1937. Currently she is owned by Door County Cruises, LLC. The fireboat is 90 feet long, has a steel hull, twin screw propulsion Detroit Diesels, hydraulic steering control and carries 127 passengers. For you maritime buffs, check out the website: http://www.doorcountyfireboatcruises.com/

Capt. Linda & mate Rocky at helm

Our Captain is Linda, & her mate is Rocky; one very handsome fellow and reasonably good at posing. He loves to sit in the captain’s chair with Captain Linda, who, by the way, gives an excellent narration of the history along with the current status of the area. Rocky gets to live aboard full time – lucky guy!

Rocky's official home

It was especially nice to see everyone enjoying the tour. This little guy loved to stand up at the side of the boat & bark at the dogs on shore!

Content passenger!

The interior had many interesting artifacts & photos; however the light reflecting on the protective glass made picture taking challenging.

One of many interior displays

Originally we had planned on taking the morning tour, but Capt. Linda requires a minimum of 12 passengers. With the price of diesel fuel, you can’t run a tour boat at a loss. The afternoon tour turned out just right. Not too many passengers with lots of room to move around & the opportunity to meet fellow passengers.

Bob gives a BIG thumbs up!

Room to roam about & talk

View of the side of fireboat

Soon we head west & watch the downtown bridge open at the top of the hour.

We loved watching the bridge open

As luck would have it, prior to boarding, we drove out to the Sherwood Point Lighthouse & took some pictures, not realizing that we would be viewing this lighthouse from the fireboat when we reach Green Bay. What a treat!

Sherwood Point Lighthouse taken from the Fireboat

On the Lake Michigan side, we get to see the Ship Canal built by the Army Corps of Engineers & the US Coast Guard Light.

Original timbers used in construction of the canal

Coastguard facility at entrance to the canal at Lake Michigan

What can I say about boys and their toys? Here is a picture of what Bob says he wants:

Bob's idea of a yacht

And finally, if he saves his pennies, he may someday be able to afford this:

Reality, with luck!

What a teriffic day! It's hard to say "goodby" to Linda & Rocky. Thanks for taking us on a great adventure through Sturgeon Bay & the Army of Engineers canal.

We bid farewell to Rocky & Capt. Linda

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