End of the day, time to go home

I took a few shots during the boat ride back from the WICC transmitter site today.  This has to be one of the more unique transmitter sites to access in the country.  Most of the time, the boat ride takes about five to ten minutes, depending on other vessels in the channel.  The dock at the island is in rough shape due to last month’s storm, but it is generally passable.

We are still working on repairing the damage from Sandy.  Today was patching up the roof and troubleshooting the tower lights.  The tower light wiring, junction boxes, and splices were all soaked by seawater, and there are several issues with malfunctioning side markers and beacon lights.  We will be rewiring everything next week.

Departing Pleasure Beach Island, Bridgeport, CT
Departing Pleasure Beach Island, Bridgeport, CT

Shot over the stern looking at the two 1926 vintage Miliken towers. The square, self-supporting towers are nearly ninety years old, most of which was spent in a salt air environment, as such these towers are in excellent shape. They knew how to make things back then.

The Port Jefferson Ferry, Bridgeport Harbor, CT
The Port Jefferson Ferry, Bridgeport Harbor, CT

The Ferry runs between Port Jefferson, NY (Long Island) and Bridgeport, CT carrying cars and pedestrians. There are no cars on this particular boat, so it must be out of service.

The pilot house on the Harbor Master boat
The pilot house on the Harbor Master boat

Looking into the pilot house of the Harbor Master boat. Looks a little crowded in there, I’ll just stay out on deck and enjoy the ride.  Sometimes it is the small things.

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7 thoughts on “End of the day, time to go home”

  1. I’ve been on that very ride with Ed, when I got the tour out there a few years ago. It was a really unique experience. Between the two very old towers on the abandoned beach, and the FM on the smokestack, that has to be one of the most unusual pair of AM/FM stations in the country.

  2. Why didn’t you pick a nice sunny warm day? Of course equipment never breaks down under such conditions. It looks awfully cold and raw out there for a November 30 ride. And once you hit the dock, you still have to walk a bit, luckily across level ground. I suppose it could be worse, up a snowy mountain during a blizzard.

    At least hurricane season is over now that we’re into December (barely) but winter weather season has just begun.

  3. Bob M. I had that very experience working at WDHA FM Dover NJ in the 1970s. We didn’t have a blizzard though. The XMTR was up an unpaved, un maintained, snow covered dirt road. The site at that time had no backup generator. Half way up the hill the 4WD SUV started sliding backwards off the road and heading for a tree. Then luckily, I hit a rut and it stopped me from going into the tree. I decided to hike the rest of the way up to the building. Inside I found our 230v power was reading 45 volts at the service panel’s line side. Utility company’s problem! I shut off the disconnect switch and went back down the hill to report back to my bosses. I backed down the hill and almost went off the road again. I should have requested HAZARDOUS PAY!

  4. Back in the 70s ALL transmitter access roads were unpaved, unmaintained, dirt roads with large power lines running along side. Easy to spot but you didn’t want to go there in the winter. And if you DID run off the road, you never would have even thought of suing the station; you would have been a full-time employee back then too. How things have changed in 40+ years.

  5. Bob, et al: Most of the roads to mountain top transmitter sites are still unpaved and vary from a graded roadway to a jeep trail up a stream bed. Of course, traversing a stream bed during one of the recent hurricanes (or their aftermath) can present some challenges, like drowning, for example. Things have not changed that much…

  6. I noticed the other night that only 1 tower was lit as I was driving past on 95. Is that normal? I thought I had seen lights on both towers.

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