The Dorothy Ann-Pathfinder arriving at Arcellor Mittal. (Laura Johnston, RocktheLake)

The crew lives on the ship, working six hours on and six hours off, seven days a week, for 60 days.

So what’s it like aboard a laker?

RocktheLake climbed aboard (literally, with a ladder) at the Port of Cleveland Bulk Terminal at Whiskey Island on Lake Erie to find out. We rode Interlake Steamship Co.’s Dorothy Ann-Pathfinder six miles up the Cuyahoga River with 16,300 tons of iron ore for the Arcellor Mittal steel plant.

See the full ride at