Soo Locks - Federal Mackinac

(Sault Ste. Marie, MI) Ever since I was a child growing up in Detroit I have been fascinated with the massive freighters that traverse Great Lakes waterways. While finding myself with a few minutes to kill this afternoon in Sault Ste. Marie I spotted the Federal Mackinac, a cargo freighter flagged in the Marshall Islands, passing through the Soo Locks.

This vessel is especially large, with over 27,000 metric tons of displacement and boasting a hull over 600 feet in length. Built in 2004 in China, this freighter possesses three cranes that are each capable of hoisting 30-MT loads.

Interestingly, my enthusiasm to photograph the freighter caught the attention of an armed Homeland Security official in a white Border Patrol SUV. I suppose I was technically violating the demarcated Homeland Security Zone space by sticking my arms and camera through the fence to take this image, but it was a bit surreal for me to see such a strong federal presence in a region that is not exactly a hotbed of terrorism.

Hey man: no harm, no foul, and just taking pictures here, mister.

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