HOUGHTON/HANCOCK TO MARQUETTE
13 August 2010 | Marquette, MI
Day 3 and 4 - 8/9/10 and 8/10/10
Left Ontonagon for Houghton/Hancock at around 10:00 am. Very hot humid day. From the entrance to the Keweenaw waterway to the Houghton Lift bridge was about 10 miles.
About a ½ a mile away from the bridge I hailed the bridge on the radio and the lift operator said he would open the bridge when we were a little closer. We get closer but the bridge doesn't open, so we circled around and around waiting for the bridge to open. I hail the bridge again and ask if there is a problem - yep, there is, the ridge won't open due to technical problems. He tells us to keep circling and will try again. After about a ½ hour of this the operator told us he had someone coming to try and fix the problem. Could be an hour or so and suggested we tie up to the wall and wait. So we did that, with a little difficulty due to the all the power boats zooming up and down the river leaving sizeable wake behind them, causing us to be push against the wall. Anyway, we managed to tie up and then wait. An hour or so later one of the bridge operators walks down and talks to us, telling us that they can't fix the bridge and need to have someone come all the way from Lansing Michigan and try and fix the problem. We stayed overnight at the wall and they finally were able to open the bridge at about noon the next day. Passed under the bridge and stayed the night at the Houghton County Marina.
Day 5 - 8/11/10
Left Houghton for Big Bay, MI. Left at 10:15 am and arrived at the entrance to Big Bay at around 5:00 pm. Based on the charts and cruising guide books the entrance to Big Bay Harbor Dock is supposed to be 11 feet - not! Lots of silting and grounded in 2 feet straight down the middle of the entrance. After several attempts to back up to no avail Bill put one of the anchors with line in the dingy and rowed to the breakwall then dropped the anchor. Bill then rowed back to the boat and pulled the boat off the sand bar. Bill then gets back in the dingy to go retrieve the anchor and line. A few hairy moments getting the boat very close to the break wall and the potential of fouling the anchorline in the prop we were able to right ourselves with the help of a 12 year old boy standing on top of the breakwall. After that we decided we weren't going to try again and left to go to Marquette. Finally arrived at Marquette and the Presque Isle Marina at 11:00 pm. Pitch black with no moon, strictly on instruments only. Arrived safe and sound. Just another routine day of cruising!!!
Day 6 and 7 - 8/12/10 and 8/13/10
Called a taxi to take us into downtown Marquette, had breakfast in town and went to the library. My ex-husband, Keith, lives in Marquette so he picked us up in town and brought us back to the marina. Went back into down in the evening to go grocery shopping for the next several days.
The plan was to leave this morning to go to our next leg; Munising, Grand Marais, White Fish Point, then Sault Ste. Marie to go through the lock but due to weather and possibility of 7 foot waves we have decided to wait out the weather in the safety of the Presque Isle Marina until probably Monday. My son, Chris, drove up to Marquette from Minneapolis and plans on going with us through the Soo lock then have his Dad pick him up in Sault Ste. Marie. It was good seeing him this morning and hearing all about his 2 month backpacking trip around Europe and Eastern Europe.