Midway Marina, Fulton, MS to Columbus Marina, Columbus, MS — October 30, 2013

Another early day today because we had 4 locks today and had no idea if there would be a delay.  I suspected that once we were locked thru the rest of the locks would know we were coming and could try and be ready for us.

I started the genny and pulled the power cord with Lenore still in bed. I was hoping that she could get a little more rest because she did not feel good yesterday.  We left the dock today with Lenore still down below but she came up on deck within about 10 minutes.  She was feeling better and the starting of the genny had been enough to wake her.

We were at the first lock in about 15 minutes.  There were 4 boats and they fit us in after they let out an upbound tow and taking the lock back down for another tow.  We were fortunate and by 8:10 we had the 1st lock behind us.

The sun was out for a short time this morning and the temps were relatively mild. The color on the river is really starting to come out and the sun shows it well.  When we got further south you could tell that there was not as much color.

We were able get thru the other locks pretty much driving right in and being locked thru.  The last lock held the doors open for another boat that had been at Midway last night and was running on plane.  He had been able to catch up.  The normal courtesy is
to exit a lock in the order that you entered. When they opened the lock doors this “fast” boater exited with the first boat.  I asked on the radio if I had missed something and he asked to go first. Another boater said no and said that it is common courtesy to exit in
the order you enter.  Mr. Fast said he was going to go fast and thought it would be better to exit first.  We told him he should have asked the other boaters.  He was kind of at a loss for words but finally came back and said he was sorry.

There was a lot of floating debris in the waterway.  Some was just plants that had been uprooted but there were also some logs.  The lead boat, Bella Sea Casa, did a good job of alerting the other 3 of what he passed and where it was so we could avoid it.

After getting tied up at Columbus Marina it was good to see a lot of boats we have not seen since Kentucky at Green Turtle Bay. We had traveled with some of them on the Illinois and Mississippi and it was good to talk to them again.

We were going to go into town for dinner with Humbug but Lenore was not feeling good so we stayed on board.  The marina was putting on a pulled pork BBQ for the boaters so I went over and brought a couple of plates back.  The food was very good and it worked out that we did not have to cook a meal on board.

The Weatherman is predicting some rain and possible thunderstorms for tomorrow so we will be in Columbus for a couple of days.  The next stop after this one is an anchorage and I do not want to be there in the rain. Once was enough.

Grand Harbor Marina, Counce, TN to Midway Marina, Fulton, MS — October 29, 2013

We got an early start because we had 3 locks to go thru today.  The weather started out in the high 50’s and the temps went into the 80’s once the sun came out. The first lock was about 3 ½ hours away so we had a pretty long cruise to get there.

We called the lock from about 4 mile away and were told that they were doing maintenance and it could be anywhere from 1 ½ hours to 4 hours before we could lock thru.  We just idled up to the lock and tied up to the lock wall. It was almost 4 hours before the lockmaster came on and said they were ready.  They had to fill the lock to get it ready for us.  We had a total of 7 boats in the lock that had come from the Tennessee River area.

One of the boats in the lock was a Pilothouse Trawler style named Passage.  It is a custom made boat that was in the slip next to us a Grand Harbor. Nice boat with a lot of room inside. Also a very well taken care of boat.

After locking thru we asked the lockmaster if he would inform the other locks we were going thru today and he said he would let them know and they would probably be ready for us. It worked great for the next 2 locks. They had the doors open and we were able to go right in.  We needed to pace ourselves because they waited for all 7 boats and the one sailboat was the slowest.

The scenery along the way was not much for the first part because we went thru a 25 mile are called the divide that was totally dug by the Army Corp when they connected the Tennessee River with the Tombigbee River.  Once past the divide we were in Bay Springs Lake which had some very nice fall color coming in but still quite a ways to go.

With the delay we got out of the last lock at about 5:30 and we still had 4 miles to go.  Dusk was setting in but the dock master was great at Midway Marina. He probably has done this before and he was able to get 5 boats in and tied up in about 15 minutes.  The other 2 boats anchored out for the night.

Midway is exposed to the Tenn-Tom but it did not matter last night because there was no traffic that set up any wake.  It was pretty peaceful for sleeping.  Lenore had a touch of a cold so we ate on board and she was able to rest.

Clifton Marina, Clifton, TN to Aqua Yacht Harbor, Iuka, MS — October 15, 2013

We got an early start today because we had almost 60 miles and 1 lock to go thru.  The sky was partly cloudy at day break but it was mostly cloudy by the time we left.  Within the first hour we had some light sprinkles but they never really amounted to anything.

The scenery was good with lots of limestone rock walls and some nice residential developments.  All the homes have storage areas under the houses with stairs up to the first livable floor.  It looked like a lot of the houses were elevated at least 12’ and maybe more.

Many of the banks where the limestone is located is on the outside of the bends in the river.  The flood waters over the years have scoured the outside bends as it drains down river.  The opposite side of the river is a sand bank.

As we got nearer the Pickwick Lock and Dam the water current started to increase.  While we started out at approximately 9.6 mph we were down to about 7.8.  I increased the throttles and got us back up to about 8.6 but it still kept dropping. As we neared the dam I think the current in the river was about 4.4 mph.  We passed a sailboat about 2 miles before the dam and I think he was crawling along at about 2 mph.

The lock was busy and we waited about 50 minutes for them to take a tow up and bring the lock back down.  That actually gave the sailboat the time he needed to get to the lock.  The lockmaster even commented that they were letting a lot of water thru today and they would be increasing it later in the day.

The scenery on Pickwick Lake was great.  We saw many large homes on the lake and a lot of them for sale.  You almost wonder why???  One house even had a sign on the balcony saying it was for sale and was the best view on the lake.

The rain held off long enough for us to get to the marina and get tied up. Most of the rain was light with no real serious weather like they were predicting.