7 ships will winter in the Twin Ports as Great Lakes shipping season ends

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Seven ships will be wintering in the Twin Ports this year.

The Soo Locks at Sault Ste. Marie, which connects Lake Superior to the other Great Lakes, are set to close at midnight Friday, which means the lakers are making their way to the Port of Duluth-Superior for winter layup, Duluth Shipping News says.

Two ships are already laid up in the port, and four more are expected to arrive between now and Friday.

The seventh ship – the 1,000-foot "Paul R. Tregurtha" (pictured above) – isn't expected to arrive until next week. The laker is making a few more late-season deliveries of iron ore on Lake Superior before ending the season in the Twin Ports, reports note.

When the Tregurtha arrives, it will mark the official end to the 2015 Great Lakes shipping season, The Associated Press says. The 2016 shipping season will begin on March 25 when the Soo Locks reopen, FOX 21 reports.

The ships will spend the next eight weeks undergoing maintenance and repairs, the Duluth News Tribune says, after a slower-than-expected iron ore shipping season, WDIO reports.

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