Thursday, April 2, 2009

A Spring Day Along The Thames

This past Tuesday was an absolutely gorgeous day so I decided to ditch the many chores I still have to do around the house and drove down to New London, a former whaling mecca located just south of Norwich and across the Thames River from Groton.

This picture is of Groton and Fort Griswold, a place I've written about in the past, and site of a famous Connecticut Revolutionary War battle involving our own infamous Benedict Arnold.

Benedict Arnold never was at Fort Griswold, though, as he stayed across the Thames in the area of Fort Trumbull, which is on the New London side. This shot was taken from the end of the state fishing pier which juts out into the Thames River from Fort Trumbull State Park. It's a great place to go to try to take pictures of boats that may be traversing the Thames either coming in from or heading out to the Long Island Sound.

With the United States Coast Guard Academy located in New London as well as a Coast Guard station right next to Fort Trumbull, it's pretty easy to catch USCG boats. In the background you can see one of the nuclear submarines that is being built at General Dynamics Electric Boat. EB is responsible for a lot of employment in our area and that includes my son & his wife as well as my brother & his wife - all of whom work in design in one way, shape, or form.

This is the USCG Barque Eagle, a training cutter for future officers of the United States Coast Guard. Built in 1936 initially as a training vessel for the German Navy, she is the only active commissioned sailing vessel in American government service. I'll need to do some more research on her as well as get back to New London some day when the Coast Guard is offering tours - which they do from time to time.

The figurehead of The Eagle is - appropriately enough - an eagle!

The Eagle will be leaving port in New London on April 20th and begin a training cruise that will include Europe, Bermuda, and the Atlantic Coast of North America which includes Canada. She won't be back until August 14th but will no doubt return with a well-seasoned crew of Coast Guard cadets ready to take their places on active duty.

In addition to taking pictures along the Thames, I wanted to try my hand at some railroad photography - especially moving trains - to see how well I did. This one above is my favorite of the group that I took and is one of the many Acela trains that pass through New London. This particular train was heading south.
One of the guys I work with in dispatch would love to have this fella's job as he loves all things train-related. Actually, being a conductor would probably be a pretty cool job especially if you were lucky enough to get one of the cross-country routes. This particular conductor was heading up to Boston.

Another Acela train heading south to New York and points beyond.

I like the way that the lamps are reflected in the train car's windows in this picture so even though it might be an otherwise boring picture, I decided to include it!

Finally, my afternoon in New London the other day was pretty much for the birds as there were seagulls everywhere! Of course what else does one expect that close to the open sea?!

So there you have it, a few of my 261 pictures that I took on a gorgeous Tuesday afternoon as March came to a close. I hope you enjoyed looking at them as much as I enjoyed taking them. Let me know if you think I need more practice, though, as I'll be happy to go back down and try it again as not only did I have a good time snapping pictures but I got a lot of exercise and even had a little extra energy (no diet pills required!).
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  1. Dick served in the USCG for 4 years, so I especially enjoyed all the CG info. Loved the pics of the trains and seagulls. Check out my site for a live eagle cam!

  2. You will probably be your worst critic and will always think you can do better. I love the seagull picture in the lower left corner. Keep shooting!

  3. P.S. The next time you are "down the shore"(as they say in these parts), plan a visit to Harkness State Park in Waterford. Admission charged after Memorial Day. Good scenery to photograph. A nature walk, huge historic mansion, and gardens.The mansion and gardens not open until May31. Plan lots of time and go on week-days.

  4. I love anything "water" related so you satisfied me :o) The sky is sooo blue in some of your pics, it's unbelievable.

  5. gosh honey, i feel like i got to go too! great shots!!! and i LOVE the tall ship. i didn't know about it.

    smiles, bee

  6. Linda, I am amazed at the beauty of those pictures, the way they capture the feel of the day. The way the sun shines on the water. It makes me feel really good here in rainy Oregon today. Thank you for making me smile today!!!!

  7. if I ever visit you...the USCG Barque Eagle is on the list!

    have you started YOUR list?

    very cool pictures

  8. Awesome Linda. Beautiful day (no snow) and water and boat. It just doesn't get any better than that.

    Have a terrific day. Big hug. :)

  9. I love the train shots-especially the one just above the sea gulls-which are also great pictures!

  10. The pictures were great, and I loved the trains and seagulls.

    Is the Connecticut Thames pronounced the same way as the British Thames?

  11. I love the lines in the shot of the ship's eagle

    and all your RR shots are great, my camera doesn't handle motion very well - one of these days I'll steal - uh - buy a proper camera ;)

    seagulls are such hams aren't they!

  12. I thought you'd popped over to Britain for a moment at first! Excellent pics.

  13. It's strange reading about the Thames in another country. :0

  14. very cool miss linda.....

  15. Some really super-duper pics there, Linda. I especially liked the boat pictures -beautiful!

  16. Looks like your Tuesday was lots of fun.

    Your photos are amazing. I love the train shots and that eagle figurehead is way cool.

    I agree with Dianne, those gulls can be such hams. You got some great closeups of them.

    Keep snapping away, Duchess Linda!

  17. here's a story for ya about the Eagle.

    back in the early 80s the Naval Sub Support Facility (NSSF) was tasked to replace some of the ropes on the Eagle. Hubby was writing the work procedure for this to be done. He needed the specifications off of the original blueprints for the ship (the QA program did not allow them to use the old line as a sample..they had to have the original plans) He called over to the Coast Guard Academy to get the blueprints. The person he spoke to was laughing as he hung up the phone. Hubby got the plans a few days later.....

    They were all in Danish.

    Apparently the Eagle was built in Denmark.

    Made it a bit interesting....they ended up not being able to interpret the plans and used the old line as a sample anyway.


    thought you'd like to know.

  18. hubby said it was good to see EB again.


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