Wednesday, July 13, 2011

US Coast Guard Mackinaw

 Last Saturday our family visited Mackinaw City.  We toured the United States Coast Guard Icebreaker Mackinaw which is permanently docked there.  This is the retired vessel which has been replaced by a newer version with the same name.  She was decommissioned in 2006 and and the new Mackinaw is a smaller, multi-use vessel. It was a very interesting visit.  The ship is much bigger than I anticipated with a crew of 75-half of which are operators and half are engineers.  The Mackinaw was build during WW II at a cost of $10 million dollars.

The Mackinaw certainly moved many boats during her 62 years on the Great Lakes.
 This is the hallway leading to the sleeping quarters.  I think the Mackinaw was more spacious than the Air Craft Carrier Midway which we visited in San Diego two years ago.

 The picture below shows the female sleeping quarters.

 Looking over the bow of the ship, you can see the marina at Mackinaw City and also get an idea of the enormous size of the Mackinaw.

 The hull of the boat is 1 5/8 inches thick to allow it to break out the spring pathway for Great Lakes shipping.
It was a worthwhile visit.  The admission price is $11 for adults & $6 for children.  It is a self-guided tour with several stops for videos and explanations from the 'crew'.  We completed our visit in about an hour.  There are many steps in the tour and I don't think the boat is handicap-accessible.

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