With the early morning wake up call at the Kaskaskia Lock wall, we all moved out into the main channel of the Mississippi River.
We were a little concerned reading our navigation notes for today.
Mile 84- CAUTION Turbulent area due to bend weir dams
Mile 81- CAUTION Turbulence in this area
Mile 77.5 CAUTION Shallows very quickly
Mile 54 CAUTION Narrow channel lots of turbulence
The charts are accurate- the river flows along and at certain spots becomes a dishwasher- sloshing and whirling in circular motions- becomes a bit difficult to hold the course, especially if meeting an oncoming tow with barges.
The tow boats required to push up to 35 barges need a lot of power to push around a bend, and leave a pretty good wake. In fact it feels like a sunami coming at you if you get too close! Today we met a tow pushing six barges wide and 5 barges long.
A few examples of loads we saw today included Crushed Rock, Coal, Mulch.
The load of rocks reminded me of my brothers photos of overloaded hoppers of corn on the farm. In this case large rocks over flowing the side of the barge!
We continue to see workers busy going about their business every day:
If not the industrial workers its the bridge workers above us:
Who knew so much commerce was going on along the rivers?
LITTLE DIVERSION CREEK
With the turbulence and debris in the water, we were glad to reach Little Diversion Creek after covering 69 miles today. We followed Jo-Ella, Enterprise, and M’Lady into the narrow creek and staggered our anchorage near the low railroad bridge that blocked us from going any deeper. Just as we had all settled in, a radio call came that another 5 boats were joining us!
Our group of boats anchored and were soon joined by an additional 5 looper boats. They had opted to do the 110 miles directly from Hoppies; while we took an extra night and experienced the overnight at the Kaskaskia Lock wall.
Of course, after a long day of boating, it made sense to gather and share stories. A few of the boats launched their dingies and helped gather the other boaters on one boat for snacks, drinks, laughs and tall tales. ( That is our boat in the background)
So fun to meet other looper- Some had just started, a few are half way through the loop, one is finishing next week! It all depends on where you start from-Michigan, Florida, Ohio, Tennessee, New York, New Hampshire, were all represented.
Beautiful sunset, calm quiet night on the river with nine boats at anchor. This is what its all about.