So Long Huck
16 October 2011 | Green Turtel Bay
Chris/ And Still More Off The Same
Day 13 Sunday October 16 We're up at 3:45 and of the barges at Hobbies by 4:30. The Moon is still fairly high in the sky, but the stars are still bright and easy to see, not much ambient light. We have two spot lights working, one from the deck in front of the fly bridge and one hand held on the fly bridge, to pick up the buoys, and stay in the deep water. It's a challenge, but not the worrisome part of the deal.
Tugs work the river system all night long, and barges are left everywhere along the river. Avoiding 'tugs in tow' in the dark and finding the anchored barges are the real issues. We are lucky and don't catch any downbound traffic. We do however have to negotiate our way by a couple coming up river at us. It's a little thrilling in the dark.
After a couple hours we are treated to yet another great sunrise on the Mississippi. It appears we are going to have another perfect day weather-wise. Its early morning now, jackets are off and we're looking forward to shorts and tee shirts.
By 11:30 we're no longer downbound. 'You can't get there from here.' We have to head up river (and north) on the Ohio River. As we make that turn and leave the Mississippi behind, Bob and I are on the fly bridge enjoying the weather and the view. There is every bit as much, if not more, traffic here as on the Mississippi. Apparently the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio rivers is a big staging area for tugs and barges. We wind our way through the maze and we're into fairly open water.
We eventually get to a new lock being built. It's incredibly impressive to see, both from an engineering standpoint and a financial one. We still have 'it' in this country. Man the stuff we can do. This new lock will apparently replace two others further upstream.
As we approach the first of the working dams and locks, the wickets are down. We don't need to loss time going through this one. I have a bit of a hard time wrapping my head around a lock being there, but not having to use it.
The second lock, which is theoretically one of the busiest inland locks in the world, has a couple tugs in tow 'locked down' as we approach. We have a bit of a wait. It's wild to watch a 3x5 (3 barges wide by 5 barges long) come out of the lock. And it takes a while. But finally we get in and locked down ourselves.
The traffic on the river above Lock 52 is a little lighter and we make great time, in perfect weather, to the Kentucky Lake Lock and Dam. We're already on our way out of the Ohio. We pass an old fort along the way. And, as at Grafton, it looks like a jamboree of some kind is going on there.
We get up the lock and into the Tennessee. Just as we enter we turn left into Barkley Pass and then into Cumberland Waterway (often referred to as Kentucky Lake) and into Green Turtle Bay. What a great looking spot and marina. And again, like Grafton, almost everything is afloat. There are some fairly big boats in here, and lots of amenities.
We fuel up and take on another 660 gallons. After we fill the water tanks and pump out we'll move to a slip. While fueling, Mike and I have time to borrow a van and go grab some groceries. After we slide, stern first, into the slip and get settled, we're back in the van and off to the world famous Pattie's, for their signature 2" pork chop. We'll be hitting the road again early tomorrow for the trip to Pickwick.