Deckhand Rocky's Day
My name is Rocky. I work on the Drummond Island Ferry and this is my job Through My Eyes.
And I love it here. I've lived here and worked on the boat for 18 years. In the summertime when you come to work you bring your snowmobile suit, your helmet your gloves, your shorts, your blue jeans, your sweat shirt and your coat because in a 12 hour shift the weather can change a lot down here.
That's just in the summer time. In the winter you just dress as warm as you can and you're still cold all day long.
It can get really cold. Today is not to bad, it's like 10-15 degrees, so it's not that bad. But boy when the wind is blowing and it's 10-20 below zero and you get a wind chill of 50 below -- you just can't dress warm enough that's all. All you do is hurry up and get your job done and get back in you little warming station and try to warm up before you gotta do it again.
As a deckhand, my job is to load the cars and unload the cars. We guide every car on so we can get as many on as we can.
There's a line up on both sides of the river. The lines can be real, real long so we will look to see if there's any semis if there's log trucks if there's cars with trailers. And as a result, we have to pick and choose where we put them so we can maximize the load.
If you don't load the boat the right way you don't get a full load on, and then people have to wait. Now we will go back if we leave them if they are on time on the scheduled time to leave, we will go back for them, but other then that we try to maximize every load so were not making extra trips because it's just to expensive.
The first thing that most people say is they can't believe we run it year round, but we have 800 to 1000 people here year round.
Therefore we have to keep the ferry running because of emergencies, and food and everything else to the island. We keep the ferry running 24 hours a day 365 a year. We break our own ice and keep the water open that way.
I love it. I absolutely love it. I enjoy meeting the people. I enjoy working on the deck. We got a good crew working here now. They're a bunch of guys you're with 12 hours a day, so your with each other a long time, but I truly do enjoy it. Summertime is really nice, but this time of year it's cold and it's wintertime in the U.P. that's all.