3-15-2014: Anchored out in the beautiful, clear blue water by Manjack Cay, Abaco, Bahamas

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Hoppies Marina. MO to Evansville, IL, Evansville Marina

Saturday: Pictured is our view as we left Hoppies this morning. There were several barges during the night. We were rocked and rolled all night long. We also saw one barge after the other all day long. We ended up going back to our original plan of staying at Evansville Marina, IL. The gas truck that was going to meet us at the lock was busy so the owner of the marina said he would make sure we got gas. We went up the Kaskaskia River (very beautiful) to this marina on 2 old barges with a bar and grill on it; very cool. The owner delivered our gas in a small 100 gallon tank pulled by his small tractor. The marina has been flooded out for the last 3 years so he set up on the barges. There was electric and water hook ups so we stayed there.

CO's Comments: Since our last blog we found a place to stay tonight with free electric and water. This place is unique and would be a nice side trip. Also, I think every looper should stop at Hoppies and talk with Fern. It's a great experience.

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Friday, September 3, 2010

Alton, IL to Kimmswick, MO; Hoppies Marina

Friday: Got an early start and went straight through Lock 26; had a real hard time holding onto the rope as it was very windy. Lock 27, in the canal before St. Lewis, was just the opposite; very calm. We shared the lock with a small Tow and barge and a Kayak (pictured); he was going to New Orleans. Got a good picture of the Arch in St. Lewis and we made it to Hoppies by 12:15. After we got settled we walked to town and had lunch at the Blue Owl-Very good. Later we sat down with Fern and she went over all the dangers of the river ahead-picture of Fern and me.

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W90 21 6190

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Last day in Alton

Thursday: We were busy today getting ready for the next week. The next 4 out of 5 days will be with out electricity. Friday we will be at Hoppies Marina, Kimmswick, MO; Saturday we will tie up below the Kaskaskia River Lock and Dam but first we have to go through the lock and a gas truck will fill us up with fuel, then we have to go back through the lock to tie up for the night. Another new experience.
Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday we will be anchoring out and, if all goes well, we will be at Green Turtle Bay Marina, Grand Rivers, KY, by Wednesday, September 8th. We have 218 miles without a fuel stop. I was told by the CO that those 4 days of anchoring we have to conserve on water and we will only be running the generator sparingly. So we won't be blogging til the 8th or later; sorry, I chose coffee in the morning to blogging at night.

Above are pictures of Keith doing his daily ritual in the engine room and of "I Dock "where we stayed these past few days. It's been nice having the days off. When we get up in the morning and go up to the sun porch for coffee we miss saying Good Morning to Dave.
CO's comments: As of today the official name for what we all call "May" flies is now "Almquist" flies. We got up this morning and the boat was covered again with those miserable things. We have encountered black ones, yellow ones, green ones, and now, back to black ones. The reason I call them "Almquist" flies is because they force you to wash your boat every day.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Extended stay

Tuesday: This is the first marina that we have actually run into other people on the loop. They all just came down the Illinois River and had lots of stories to tell about the Asian Carp. All had carp jump on their boats and one jumped right through his screen door!

We have extended our stay here in Alton for two reasons. Lock 27 (Chain of Locks), was closed down for repairs and now there is a bottleneck of barges and pleasure craft. There was a 23 hour wait with 15 barges waiting to go through the lock and it is now down to a 13 hour wait. Second, the next two days they are predicting a 70% chance of thunder storms so we decided to stay put.
We walked over to the museum this afternoon. It was worth the walk in 90 degree weather. They had a Tow simulator; Keith did real good but I hit the wall. Driving our boat is easy compared to driving a Tow with 15 barges. It was fun even though I did bad.
The grocery store close to the marina picked me up and I did my shopping and they brought me back. I thought that was very nice of them. Keith also needed oil and filters for an oil change and Car Quest delivered. Can't beat that.
CO's comments: I have time to wash the boat. Bobbie forgot to mention that the Liquor Store also delivers. This is a must because our next stops are all in dry counties. The Alton Marina has all covered slips which is nice because our air conditioners do not have to work as hard in this 90 degree weather.
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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Hannibal to St. Charles, MO and then a short day to Alton, IL

Saturday: What a day. It started out with a beautiful walk along the river in Hannibal, MO. We got a early start and went through our first lock; there was no one outside and there were no ropes to hang on to so we floated. We have never experienced this before. Got to the second lock and the same thing happened only this time, at the end, someone came outside and we asked him about it. I guess when it is high water they let you float. Both locks went down less than a foot.

I called in the morning to make reservations for that night at Timber Lake Marina, Elsberry, MO, and it was closed due to high water. She said we could tie up at our own risk; they only had 30' slips, and there was no electric or water because of the high water. We passed. We tried several others before we got a yes to electric, water, and length of boat at Two Branch Marina, St. Charles, MO, but when we got there it was a covered slip and we did not fit under it. We ended up at Riverbend Marina which I had already call and they only had 30' slips. The owner was gone but the boaters fixed us up at the end of their dock and plugged us into another boaters electric who was not there. They were very friendly and helpful people. By this time we had put almost 80 miles in for the day, it was hot and humid and we were tired. We took showers, ate, and had a few drinks with our new friends and were in bed by 22:00. Everywhere we went today people were dressed like pirates and talking like them; they really get into the day.

Sunday: Today was a short day, slept in a little and headed for Alton, IL, by 09:30. It was hot and humid again and very windy. Got to the gas dock by 11:45 and to our slip by 12:45. Got set up and headed for the pool. We both are taking the rest of the day off.

CO's comments: This is the end of our second week on the river. A good lesson that we have learned these past few days is when making slip reservations always tell them the length, width, and height of your boat so you won't have the problem we had yesterday. We are staying in Alton for 3 to 4 days so yes Craig I am going to wash the boat (for the 2nd time in 2 weeks).

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