Anybody have any ideas? No, letting the air out of the tires isn't an option.
The first boat on the scene was the Mystic Whaler. The big, heavy, tallship replica, based out of New London, tried to tow the Alabama free using her auxilary engine. She made several attempts without a budge.
The local SeaTow and Towboat US boats then gave it a try. While these are powerful boats, they are more designed to assist smaller and lighter vessels. Working in unison however, seemed like a good idea. One boat attached a line to the mast of the Alabama, while the other rigged a more tradition towline from the stern. The Alabama listed over as the two boats worked in tandem. Watching this, I thought she was going to be pulled free, but after numerous attempts, the schooner was still aground.
By this time, a large crowd had gathered along the shore, and a fleet of small boats circled nearby to watch. It was a hot, windless night and this was turning into a sideshow. Out of respect for the crews and a concern for safety, I kept a good distance away and watched the events from afar, relying on a zoom lense to view the action. Sure, it was interesting to watch, but it was also important to stay out of the way.
What really struck me funny was the number of self-proclaimed experts commenting on what the towboats were doing wrong. Sound can travel a great distance over the water and I could hear the manager of a nearby marina calling them "Dumb &Dumber" along with a few other unprintable words. Everybody is an expert these days.
Soundbounder: Alabama Aground part one
Soundbounder: Alabama Aground part three
Soundbounder: Alabama Aground part four
Soundbounder: Alabama Afloat
Black Dog Tallships: Alabama