L’shana Tova – Happy Rosh Hashanah

May this new year, 5779, be filled with health and happiness.

Exploring the waters of Mark Twain

It seemed romantic to follow the routes of Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer, but with the river running higher than usual, it was not easy to dodge the mighty trees, swept down river by a strong current.

DriftwoodCover

Visible sections of this tree were more than 50 feet in length, but, like an iceberg, you have no way of knowing what is lurking just below the surface.

Driftwood2

The Illinois River

Beverly (Sea Trek), Bonnie (It’s Someday) and I agreed, this structure reminded us of a beloved Brothers Grimm Fairy Tale, Rapunzel.

Rapunzel2
Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair.

IllinoisRiver

May flies in September?!?

We celebrated Octoberfest in September, so perhaps we should not have been surprised when the may flies arrived out of season … Bonnie said the flies were wise, resting their weary wings, and hitching a little ride down the river.  The one who had to sweep the little carcasses off the boat wasn’t so altruistic about the invasion.

MayFlies

Grafton, Illinois

We all know Canadian Geese fly south for the winter, but did you ever wonder where the eagles go? Now you know, it’s Grafton, home of the wintering bald eagles.

GraftonBaldEagles

The river did not disappoint as we spotted numerous bald eagles along the way.

ProudEagle

Ciao for now, It’s Someday – we were sorry to break up the happy trio of boats.

ItsSomeday
It’s Someday broke ranks and ventured south on a solo adventure.

Hey, Susan Merritt (Gypsy), when we were in Grafton, we found an amazing display of rocks.

GraftonRocksForSusanM
Rocks for Susan Merritt, in case you need more for your Gypsy collection.

The river was so high in Grafton – How High, you ask?? Well, no one was brave enough to test the bike trail to know for sure.

BikeTrail

St. Charles aka Earth City

Thanks, Beverly and Bruce (Sea Trek) for the side trip to St. Charles, although we never found the chocolate covered bacon Beverly was craving, it was a beautiful little city.

StCharles

Home of Daniel Boone

DanielBoone

And the Lewis and Clark Expedition

LewisAndClarke

BandBStCharles

St. Louis, returning to The Hill

And, we got to visit one of our favorite St. Louis restaurants again.

TheHillStLouis

Zias

An early happy anniversary to Brad and Chelsea Bishop, a year ago October we ate at Zia’s the night before their St. Louis wedding. If you are EVER in the area, this restaurant is worth the stop.  Click here for their website. A warm shout out to Brenda and Mark – we love and miss you!

Alton, Illinois

We continued to travel with Sea Trek, docking in Alton for an extended respite.  The marina is lovely, with a refreshing cement pond, and LOTS of Loopers arriving daily.

As you can see, the Mississippi River bridge is spectacular at night.

Mississippi River Bridge

Whistle Signal Tips

For all you loopers who are finally entering the river, here are the official instructions from Waterway Guide to help you communicate with the tugs/tows:

WhistleSignals

Next up?  Another Side trip to LA for a little work and a cherished visit with friends and family.  Meanwhile, Exhale is docked in Alton, Illinois, under the watch of Sea Trek – Thanks Bruce and  Beverly! 

This little frog is for Morgan and Brad

FrogsRUrFriends
Frogs (and maybe toads) are your friends

Happy New Year

L’shana tova.  May the new year be sweet, and may your lives be filled with health and happiness.

Where Have We Been So Far? Thanks for asking 🙂

Total Locks completed = 132 plus 2 dams, includes:

  • Florida – Lake Okeechobee area: 7
  • Virginia – Great Dismal Swamp: 2
  • New York – Troy & Champlain Canal: 12
  • CANADA – Chambly Canal/Quebec: 9
  • CANADA – Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway: 5
  • CANADA – Rideau Canal/Ontario: 47
  • CANADA – Trent-Severn Waterway: 44
  • Illinois – Calumet and Illinois River: 6 plus 2 dams

States and Provinces traversed on the water, commencing March 1, 2018:

U.S (March 1- June 10). Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Vermont. (August 10 – tbd): Michigan, Indiana, Illinois

Canada Provinces (June 10 – August 9): Quebec, Ontario.

Side trips (via auto or plane):

Los Angeles (MS [2 – April and May], Rick [3 – May, June and July] & Maddie [May], Cleveland (RMG, MS & Maddie [2- April and July], Craig [April])

Author: Exhale49

North Pacific Trawler

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