Monday, November 7, 2011

Day 11 on the river

Good day for mileage, we were about 1.5 miles short of 100 miles today. Had we thought about it, we could have made 100 and a bit more. We had lots of river current so we were over 10 mph all day, and got up to 12.7 mph, which is close to double what we thought we could do on average for the trip. It was raining this morning as we left. On and off during the morning it was near 70 but cloudy with light winds. After we parked in the middle of the river for the night (off the main channel )  we did  some service to the motor--changed the fuel filter and tightened the belts. Last night we changed the oil and filter. I also added the 2x4 bracing we got from Hoppie's.

Going down the river, you might think just aim for the center and go. However, the river twists and turns all over the place. Some places it's miles wide, and at others it's a 1/4 of a mile or less. The channel in the river does the same thing, goes from wide to narrow, and twists and turns and from one side to the other. The channel that is marked with buoys, going down river, the green are on the right and red on the left. The channel is a minimum of 9' but most of the time it runs 14' to 20'. at one point when a barge was coming up river in a narrow spot, it caused us to be close to the shore and we were in 40' of water, so it varies widely (water level is about 15' lower than normal on this part of the river now.)

We had some spots near 60' today.  It is very easy to lose your spot in the channel because many of the buoys are out and stacked on the shore. Dave did get out of the channel at one point but when he saw the buoy he cut over to get inside of it and missed some floating wood. The current caught the boat just as he was passing it, and pushed the boat at the buoy. It caught the side and hit the back corner near the outboard motor. It knocked a small corner off, but no leak, and we have stuff on board to patch it.

Tomorrow we will turn up river on the Ohio for 48 miles, then turn off to the Tennessee river, where we'll stay for few hundred miles. Not exactly sure where we'll end up tomorrow night, possibly Cairo, IL, or a little farther.


  1. Cairo (husband says that's pronounced Kay-ro in those parts) -- is a town about as dead as dead can be. Did a drive through there on a trip, Paducah to Cairo to Cape Girardeau. Kay-ro shuts up early -- and there is not much there. Girardeau is the biggest city on the river until Paducah. FYI -- uber earthquakes in OK these days. Following it with friends on FB. On the wide outside chance that something weird happens on the fault through Memphis - be careful! Get through Cairo and get on into Paducah ASAP.

  2. Can you share the reason for the apparent detour? My day is no longer complete until I read about the Bettie P. and your the pics

  3. Never mind, I think I know now...I had never heard of the Tenn-Tom before...kind of explains about remasting in Mobile! Another thing I love about this...learning about all the geography/history/info on the river(s).