The USS Intrepid “Sails” To The Repair Dock (12/2006)

Don’t mind my rewind 🙂 but these are the kinds of photos that made me kick off this PiercingKen.com thing in the first place.  Set the Delorean for the winter of 2006 Mr. McFly….the Professor needs to go back in time.

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Back in the latter part of 2006 I was working a job doing some technical stuff and that position found me based in Jersey City and initially I was not crazy about the location, because it was an additional train and hence and added fare to get there.

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Yet since this was the very first stop in the Jersey locality, it was possible to be back in NYC very quickly when the need arose for some musical adventuring that would eventually be read by the fans of my online Metal magazine PiercingMetal.

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The great thing about this Jersey City location was its amazing view of the Big Apple and these offices of the Investment Banking Super Power Of Doom were located right on the water which meant that the daily arrival to its cloistered walls was on the pleasant side when it came down to it.

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I’ll dig around for some photos of the sights from that side of the bay soon enough because I know I have them somewhere but now back to the business at hand.uss intrepid, intrepid sea air and space museum, aircraft carriers, the fighting i

This posting is about the fact that on one cold day in December of 2006, the USS Intrepid Aircraft Carrier was towed from its location over on 46th Street and made the several mile journey to a docking repair station over in Bayonne, NJ.  Looks like I would need to take an “early lunch” to witness it.

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My boss for this project was a rather cool sort and knew that I was a photographer working actively on the music circuit, and even though this little adventure was not at all music related she didn’t deny me the chance to capture the ship’s journey past our offices.

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The ship was supposed to be towed a few days prior to this particular day and they had a whole fanfare set up around it for when it was all set to begin.  Even with nine or so tugboats, the ship would not budge because it had decades worth of river bottom silt surrounding it.  I think it moved something like ten feet before it slid back into place.  One can almost hear the horn going wah wah wah waaaaaah in the background.

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After they cleaned up the gunk from below the ship the mission to move her was on once again and that brings us to where we are in this batch of photos.  On that chilly morning in December, I walked down to the end of one of the piers that is built over in Jersey City and snapped away as this mighty ship made its voyage.

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It might have been “smarter” for me to remain inside or closer to the boardwalk area as opposed to standing on a pier that jutted out some distance over the windy harbor but this was my decision and there was no turning back now.  Plus I used to hang out drinking cold beers in much colder weather.  That’s Russian blood for you.

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The pier where I was standing had a great view of this as it was coming towards our location and eventually passing by so I did what I could with the zoom lens and hoped to get some really nice visuals for the eventual enjoyment of others.

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While I know the ship was not moving under its own power there was just something so super cool about seeing it pass us by and getting to snare its majesty with the NYC skyline behind it.

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Come on gang, tell me that this isn’t a postcard waiting to happen.

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This shot makes me want to sing either “New York, New York” or “America The Beautiful”.  Of course since I have not sung in public in a very long time, I will spare you readers the wailing of the banshee.

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I had to say that the cold was starting to get to me, but one must surely brave it up and find the ability to ward off the frigid temperature when something as cool as this is happening around them.  Am I wrong?

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I managed to get a little closer to the carrier at this point and by the angle you can see that capturing the whole thing in the viewer was getting difficult.  This is a big ship my friends.

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Across the deck of the carrier were about a dozen fighter jets and they were not moved from the ship since I guess they are no longer able to be easily shifted.  This is the Air, Sea & Space museum after all and it’s likely that all the mechanical stuffs has been removed.

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It’s a little easier to visualize the scale difference between a mere mortal and the carrier when you look at this shot and see to the extreme lower left a police boat.  It’s like a rubber duck next to a bathing President Taft.

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I was surprised that there were not a whole lot more boats on the river when this was going on, but since the carrier had a number of tugs pushing and pulling it, they most probably cleared the waters for the regular folks and kept it all business at hand.

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The Intrepid was getting closer and the helicopters above made it sound like we were on set for the filming of a war picture and yet all I could think of was how cool this was to be seeing and photographing.

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For this shot I was actually trying to zoom in on the banner to see what it said as it was not very visible to the regular eye without the zoom.  All it said was how “the Intrepid sails to you” and I was a bit bummed having expected something a little more grandiose.

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I was essentially reaching the maximum capability of my zoom lens at this point so getting my visuals right into the cockpit of the fighter jet was an impossibility.  Sorry about that my friends.

uss intrepid, intrepid sea air and space museum, aircraft carriers, the fighting iThe debate among the folks also on the pier watching was where the ship’s captain would steer the ship’s course.  Having absolutely no background on the operation of Naval ships, I felt that the front would be the coolest place to run things but I learned from those in the know that it was from much higher above and to the center of the craft.  You truly learn something new every day.

uss intrepid, intrepid sea air and space museum, aircraft carriers, the fighting iThe ship was pretty much directly across from us at this point and lucky for those who were snapping photos from the Jersey side, it was sticking closer to NYC.  My guess is that the water was deeper where it was and either way it allowed me to snare more full shots like this one.

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It was about five more minutes before the Intrepid would be fully past our location and moving over to the side where Bayonne and the dock it would stay at for a couple of years was.  At that point I felt it was very much time to get back to work but I had to say that this was an early lunch hour that was very well spent.  I shot something like 40-50 images but we only posted just under 30 since a number of them were very repetitive.  We think that you will get the “picture” from what we did post of course.

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I know that I didn’t go too much into it in this presentation but that is because I am not 100% up on all of the facts behind this historic craft.  The carrier does have a very interesting history that we recommend you read about via its Wikipedia entry below.  Since we shot these photos, the carrier has returned to 46th Street and the whole museum is once again open to the public and refurbished with what I understand is a lot more coolness. I don’t think I was ever at the museum so perhaps I will finally check that out and don’t worry, you know that I will bring along the camera for good measure.  Until next time, thanks for letting me present these images to you.

Official Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intrepid_Sea,_Air_%26_Space_Museum
Official Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Intrepid_(CV-11)

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