GICW-Gulf Intracoastal waterway

Crossing Mobile Bay in heavier winds than expected; arriving at the Gulf Shores didn’t bring the relief we had hoped for.   Usually landfall brings calm seas- in this case the wind continued to howl at us down the canal.



The route across the bay intersected with the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GICW) at mile marker 150.   The GICW begins at Brownsville Texas and continues to Carrabelle Florida at mile marker 350.    This gives us 250 miles to cover before reaching Carrabelle.




Colleen won a free night at the Wharf in a Bingo game at the AGLCA rendezvous.   Had no idea it would be a resort and tourist destination.    Think opposite of our previous nights stay at the Grand Mariner—here we have a beautiful property that reminds me of Arbor Lakes in Maple Grove.   Not that we need it; but it is nice to know there is a ferris wheel, shopping, movie theater and more in case we do!


If you’ve been following any other looper blogs, you may notice that there are several “must see” stops along the great loop.    We stopped at a few, and passed by a few.  In this area, Lulu’s restaurant is a must see.   Lulu Buffet owns the place and is Jimmy Buffets sister.

11-5 crossing (10)

It was a 3 mile dingy ride and we went with two other groups.


Tied up behind the restaurant and had a nice lunch.

11-6 wharf to lulu's (23)

The restaurant may have started as a laid back beach style hamburger joint but over the years has evolved into a family tourist destination.=  similar to an Emma Krumbies if you are from Minnesota!


Still a nice place; just a bit commercialized.

11-6 wharf to lulu's (16)





The girls shopped a bit, while the guys waited:


It was an exciting ride back- passing larger boats, and also a tow passed us!




A southern version of Christmas  Decorations



Its so exciting to finally be in Florida, so although we work to a rainy morning; we decided to leave the marina after 2 nights.   Our plan to cover 40 miles quickly altered as we encountered choppy seas and heavier rain and winds rose to 30 mph. .

11-7 IGCW (48)

The next protected anchorage was Fort McRee .   The entrance looked shallow on the charts.   With confidence after seeing three boats already anchored; we entered the channel and dropped anchor. The rain stopped, and we had a sweet dingy ride to shore –  first chance to dip our toes in the sand.

The island is an old fort and has relics of the fort walls scattered around the island.   ;



on our hike we say an armadillo hiding in the bush, berries, and more.





11-7 IGCW (15)


turned out to be a great spot to wait out the wind!



About mnsailors

Our blog will highlight our travels along America's Great Loop. We sold our sailboat on Lake Superior for a Trawler to do America's Great Loop in 2016.
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One Response to GICW-Gulf Intracoastal waterway

  1. Steve & I rode the Ferris Wheel at night — very cool! We’ve yet to see an armadillo … sometime we hope. Lula’s is a definite must-see.
    Hope to see Moonshadow on the other side in Tarpon Springs.
    Teresa & Steve


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