First tow marks unofficial opening to Mississippi River navigation season
M/V New Dawn arrived at Lock and Dam 2 near Hastings, Minn. Wednesday morning, marking the unofficial opening of the 2015 shipping season on the Upper Mississippi River, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).
The USACE St. Paul District recognizes the first tow to arrive at Lock and Dam 2 as the unofficial start of the navigation season because it means all of its locks are accessible to commercial and recreational vessels.
American River Transportation Company boat M/V New Dawn, pushing nine barges loaded with fertilizer en route to St. Paul, Minnesota, locked through Lock and Dam 2 at 7:45 a.m. Wednesday, March 25.
The earliest date for an up-bound tow to reach Lock and Dam 2 was March 4, in 1983, 1984 and 2000, the USACE said.
The first tow to reach Lock and Dam 2 in 2014 was the M/V Angela K on April 16, while the last tow of the 2014 season was the M/V Mary K. Cavarra departing the lock heading south November 20.