Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Day Trip to Sturgeon Bay

This blog is mostly pictures taken during our drive from our campground in Bailey’s Harbor to Sturgeon Bay (and visiting the Maritime Museum), about 50 miles round trip because we went west to Egg Harbor before heading south. Otherwise, it would have been only about 35 miles. The day started out cloudy, with a 70% chance of precipitation, so I didn’t expect to get really great pictures.

I wanted to see the coastline along the shores of Green Bay, and it looked on the map like the road hugged it for several miles. However, this is what we saw.



The road was far enough from the water to allow for lots of trees to obscure the view, and private properties lined the coastline. So our view was of mailboxes, driveways and occasionally a gated entrance. I wondered what kind of house would be at the end of that? Large and grand, I’m sure. We got a glimpse of the water a few times, but the view still wasn’t what I expected. Is anyone interested in a fixer-upper?


Finally, we started to see the water, but without sunshine the views were still disappointing.


When we arrived in Sturgeon Bay, the largest town in Door County and the county seat, the first few block of downtown looked very touristy. With a population of about 9500, and with tourism one of its sources of income, it’s not surprising.


But I noticed some interesting architecture in the buildings.




I think I’ll have to return to spend some time in this shop. It’s called “Spin” and offers yarn art classes. Notice the rainbow fish on the left? Similar fish/whales were seen throughout the downtown area.


We happened to catch the drawbridge up to allow a sailboat to pass through.


The older, historic Sturgeon Bay Bridge, a couple of blocks over, didn’t have the same interruption, as the boat stopped before reaching it.


We enjoyed one of the best Mexican meals in a long time at Hot Tamales. Imagine, it was better than various states we’ve visited that are so much closer to Mexico! Everything was fresh and tasty.


The main attraction of the day was the Maritime Museum.


With Don’s maritime past, and continuing interest, this was a special treat for him. I enjoyed it, too. We opted to include a tour of the tug John Purves along with our museum admission. Here are just a few of the remaining 140+ pics I took in the museum and on the tugboat.



What a familiar device for this submariner! And the periscope actually worked, showing the bay and shipyard outside.


Another familiar scene: the type of diesel engine that played a part in his career.


A diving suit similar to what he wore.


Diver’s decompression chamber. My claustrophobia was starting to kick in just looking inside this ‘tube.’


The 150-ft. John Purves is permanently docked outside the museum. It was built in 1919.


Larry, a volunteer, gave an interesting and informative tour.


Fuel capacity 50,000 gallons. But I’m sure they didn’t have to pay $4/gal for their diesel.


A washing machine was on board, with a coin slot. The younger shipmates didn’t know the coin operation was disabled, so they fed it and the seasoned guys took the cash to fund their liberty. But there was no dryer.


Officers’ quarters were luxurious compared to what Don experienced on submarines.


The Chief Engineer even had his own private bathroom and an air conditioner in his bedroom. In fact, his ‘suite’ was larger than that of the Captain, who shared a bathroom with 1st and 2nd Mates.


But this phone was on the wall above the Chief Engineer’s bed. He was on call 24/7. I think he earned that nice suite!


Six meals were served daily, 2 of each: breakfast, lunch and dinner, which kept the cook busy from early morning till late at night. Coffee was always available. And they ate heartily!


Here’s the tug before restoration began. Although about 80 people showed interest in the project, only 8 volunteers stuck with it for four years to clean, restore and repaint the ship to prepare it for tours.


In it’s working days, the tug pulled an amazing payload, mostly of pulpwood logs.


When we returned to our campground, we met some of our neighbors, including a couple in a Dutch Star who were at the Newmar rally in Du Quoin in June. It’s a small world!


Our site is nice because we don’t have one of the back-to-back sites and have grassy space on both sides.


But we had to get inventive for leveling and stabilizing.


We’re hoping for sunnier weather tomorrow, and looking forward to more new adventures.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the great tour of the tug boat and pics. The chief engineer sure had some nice looking digs. I wouldn't want to pay the tab for filling up that rig with 50,000 gallons of diesel.


Please tell me what you think, either here, on Facebook, or by email. I *love* comments!