Last ‘saltie’ to leave Port of Duluth this afternoon

The Orsula

The ocean-going Orsula prepares to leave the Port of Duluth and Superior this afternoon. It will be the last saltie to leave the harbor for this shipping season, though lakers will continue to operate until mid-January. PHOTO: Duluth Superior Port Authority

The last “saltie” (ocean-going) vessel of the year will depart this afternoon from the port of Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin. Here’s the news from the Duluth Port Authority:

Duluth, Minn. (Dec. 19, 2013) – The last oceangoing vessel to call on the Port of Duluth-Superior for the 2013 shipping season is expected to depart later today (at about 4 p.m.). The Orsula arrived Sunday to load a total of nearly 22,000 metric tons (24,250 short tons) of durum wheat at the CHS and Gavilon grain terminals in Superior. Bound for Italy, the Orsula will be the last saltie to make a full transit this season of the 2,340-mile Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway system.

NOTE: All vessel arrival/departure times are estimates and may change without notice.
For updated times, please consult the Boatwatchers Hotline: (218)722-6489 or

The 200-meter (656-ft) Orsula, flagged in the Marshall Islands, is operated by Fednav Limited, the largest dry-bulk shipping company in Canada. Based in Montreal, Fednav also had the honor of hosting the 2013 season’s first ship ceremony here in the Twin Ports aboard its Federal Hunter. [March 30 being the earliest arrival on record]. In both cases, Daniel’s Shipping Services served as local vessel agent.

Laker traffic will continue on the Great Lakes for a few more weeks as the Soo Locks (Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.), won’t officially close to vessel traffic until Jan. 15.

The end of the Duluth-Superior shipping season is the real start of winter in northern Minnesota. Everything so far has just been the overture.

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