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Port of Duluth-Superior awaits arrival of first 'saltie'

The Federal Weser is pictured during a 2015 visit to the Port of Duluth-Superior. Photo courtesy Ken Newhams/Duluth Shipping News

The first "saltie" of the 2018 commercial navigation season, the Federal Weser, is expected to arrive at the Port of Duluth-Superior on Thursday, April 12, by 10 p.m.

The Federal Weser is expected to start loading Monday, April 16, at the CHS terminal on the Superior side of the harbor – 21,400 metric tons of durum wheat bound for Algeria. If all goes according to plan, departure could be late Tuesday, April 17, or Wednesday, April 18.

Built in 2002, the 656-foot bulk carrier is named after a major river in western Germany and flies the flag of the Marshall Islands. Part of the Fednav fleet, the Federal Weser last visited the Twin Ports in 2015. On this year's transit, it stopped along the way to deliver a load of steel in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

It appears to be the first of a half-dozen salties that will be making their way to the Twin Ports via the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System during the next couple of weeks.

Situated 2,342 miles inland from the Atlantic Ocean, this Port anchors the westernmost edge of the entire Great Lakes-Seaway System, which reopened for business just a couple of weeks ago.

The latest arrival of this Port's first saltie was the Diana on May 7, 2014, while the earliest on record was the Federal Hunter on March 30, 2013.