Thursday, June 30, 2016

Pebble Isle Marina

What a terrific day to be on the water! Tennessee River was smooth like glass. Navigated downstream 62.5 miles to marker 96. Turned starboard into Trace Creek that leads to Pebble Isle Marina. Left Clifton at 6:00 a.m. and arrived here at 1:18 p.m. with an average speed of 8.6 mph.
 Wonderful sunrise at Clifton Marina in Tennessee!
 Another picture shows how mist over the water captures sun rays and looks so golden..
 An example of how calm the river is today.
 Reflections in the water are very striking.
 Interstate 40 crosses the Tennessee River at mile 116. Truck on the bridge is probably in route to Nashville located 90 miles east.
 Carol doing a Sudoku puzzle and listening to TV. She was quite surprised when I took her picture.
Dream Manor at Pebble Isle Marina.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Clifton Marina

Jun 28th was a day of rest. We just lounged on the boat while docked at Aqua Yacht
Harbor. Watched smaller boats on Lake Pickwick pulling tubes and skiers. Lake Pickwick lies just in Mississippi and heads up Tombigbee Waterway and intersects Tennessee River. Late afternoon Mother Nature interrupted the boating activities as everyone headed for shelter. A storm moved in rapidly. Fortunately the ugly cells of purple and red passed east of the marina. We got a short burst of winds and a sprinkle.
 Storm over Lake Pickwick.
 Backside of storm.
 Another look at the storm. Colors are awesome.

June 29th (today) Left Aqua at 6:00 a.m. Crossed Lake Pickwick about 2 miles to mile 450 the upper end of the Tombigbee Waterway system. Turned port into the Tennessee River at mile 215. Now mileage numbers will be counting down. Starting down river there is a spot where States of Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee intersect as we cross into State of Tennessee. Went down 55' in Pickwick Landing lock at mile 206.7, only lock of the day. Traveled a total of 60 miles to Clifton Marina at mile 158.5. Arrived at 1:30 after a 7 1/2 hour trip. Another wonderful day on the river as there is hardly a ripple in the water. Very pleasant to ease along at 9 mph and enjoy looking at the huge homes along the river. 
 Bobbie watching the cooking with considerable interest!
 Maryann preparing potatoes as Bobbie continues to watch.
 One of the many homes along the river. All are built up high to hopefully be above the flooding.
 Keith entertains Bobbie to keep her away from the hot skillet Maryann is using.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Aqua Yacht Harbor

Another big day. Rankin lock at 398.4 with 30' lift. Montgomery lock at 406.7 with 30' lift.
Witten lock at 411.9 with 84' lift.  So in about 18 miles the elevation went up 144'. Continued to Aqua Yacht Harbor at mile 448.2 Total miles today was 54 in 8.8 hours. Had to wait 2 1/2 hours at last lock. One tow ahead of us had to lock up first. When that tug went out on top there was another tow coming down river. Had to wait for it to lock down. Exciting to see the tug was pushing a dozen barges loaded with coal. Very little coal is moving on the rivers. It is a shame the coal industry has been crippled so severely. It effects a lot of other folks besides just coal miners.
 Scott Paper Company located at mile 410
 Paper company has a huge pile trees on site.
 Whitten Lock located at mile 411.9  Another pleasure craft also waiting to lift up.
 Coal barges coming out of Whitten lock.
 Whitten lock has 84 foot lift. Walls look plenty high.
 Keith tending the line holding Dream Manor securely along the wall. Carol watching boat ahead of us as lock chamber fills with water to lift us to the next level. 
 Hard to see but there is a leak in the wall. Look at white line toward the back where water is coming through the wall. Just to the right of the navigation light.
 Coming out of the lock an Osprey is guarding its large nest on a light pole.
A nice cross located on a point about a mile from Aqua Yacht Harbor.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Midway Marina

 Heron is hoping something good to eat gets stirred up in the lock,
Kinder Morgan operates the largest network of natural gas and refined petroleum product pipelines in the United States.
 This boat traveled with us through two locks.
 Last lock today was shared with a tug pushing a single barge.
 Sunday is play day on the river as we saw several boats pulling various fun things!
Lots of folks enjoy swimming in the shallow water near the natural sandy beach.
 Look closely in the large nest and you will see young Osprey.
Dream Manor sits quietly at Midway Marina near Fulton, Mississippi.
Arrived here at 4:00 p.m. after traveling 59 miles and going thru 4 locks since 8:00 a.m. Each lock lifted up 30 feet for a total lift today of 120 feet. In case anyone notices mileage we are at mile 394.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Lazy Day

Enjoyed a quiet day at the marina visiting with personnel and other boaters. Maryann washed some clothes and then we used courtesy car to make a trip into town. Ate a good lunch at Applebee's.
Of course a visit at Walmart is always an important part of any trip to town. Some groceries and other supplies were purchased and then made the short drive back to the boat. Essential to get out of the 101 degree heat. Expect to travel further north tomorrow.
 View of Stennis lock and dam.
 Another view showing some buildings near the marina office.
 View of empty boat slips. Columbus Marina office is the elevated building with lots of steps.

Look closely at the Dream Manor near the door. Maryann is returning from her walk with Bobbie. The ten month old Dachshund appears well in the lead! Those short legs make lots of steps.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Columbus Marina

Another wonderful day on the water! Pulled anchor at Cochrane Cutoff after a very calm night.
Traveled to Bevill Lock at mile 306.8, was lifted 30 feet. Continued to Stennis Lock at mile 334.7,
lifted 27 feet.  Turned starboard at mile 335. Notice that was just .3 mile, immediately above the lock.
Easy 6.5 hour trip today. Secure at the marina where we will stay for another day.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Cochrane Cutoff

Sure could not ask for a better boating day. Weighed anchor at 8:00 a.m. Departed from Rattlesnake Bend at mile marker 224.1 Absolutely no wind and very little current on smooth water as we continued up the Tom-Big-Bee Waterway.
As mile marker information is often used in the blog an explanation might be helpful. Going upstream the markers indicate a higher number. later in the trip numbers will become smaller going downstream. Heflin Lock is located at 266.1
We had been following a tug traveling about the same speed. Watched him enter the lock pushing barges just one wide and two long. Tug captain said it would be ok if we joined him in the lock. Lock master approved and asked that we tie onto last floating bollard near the upstream gate on port side. Worked out great! Lifted 30' and as instructed left first to get clear of the tow. Out the gate we increased speed enough to stay well ahead of the tow. Continued to mile marker 287.4 and turned port into Cochrane Cutoff. Off the main channel, selected a spot in 6' of water and dropped anchor.
Total miles traveled today was 63.3 in 8.4 hours.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Rattlesnake Bend

Hard to believe a week has gone by since the last blog entry. We have been working on various things that were still not quite right. Including health issues. Finally the 4 mcgees are all feeling good at the same time! Apparently age is beginning to show. Yesterday was first day of summer and longest day of the year. Went shopping for groceries in preparation to travel. Everything seemed ok, so today June 22nd we released Dream Manor from the dock for the first time in a long while. Felt almost like a maiden voyage as we left the Kingfisher Marina and proceeded up the Tom-Big-Bee water way. Didn't leave dock until 4:00 p.m. intending to go only as far as Rattlesnake Bend to anchor for the night. Short trip was uneventful except the sticking throttle on starboard engine. Good ole W-40 saved the day. After lubricating several cable points it took about 30 minutes for cable to get free. Should be ready for 60 mile trip planned for tomorrow!