Well we finally made it to Chicago. Kind of neat to be able to see the skyline form the boat.
Someone on the Loop Blog asked yesterday how late can you leave the Georgian Bay to start the Loop. One answer was if you leave in September allow 1 month to get to Chicago for Lake Michigan. Conservative but not all that bad of an estimate considering it took us more than 2 weeks.
The ride from Racine was not the best but the waves were quartering on the stern and it was only 64 miles. We are about 3 miles south of the Chicago River entrance where it looks like Tuesday to start down the river.
The Marina, 31st Street Marina, is new. It has only been open since mid-May. Nice friendly staff and everything appears to work. Not a lot of boats here but that may be because it opened in May and not earlier.
We had a great dinner last night at our favorite Italian restaurant, La Fontanella. Nice neiborhood restaurant (2414 Oakley) that is definetly worth a visit if you are around.
Some boat chores today and Lenore is going shopping.
Nice sunny day. National Weather service said 2′ to 4′ on the lake but the majority were 4′ to 6′ and fortunately we were going with them. Really not too bad a ride we just needed to slow down a bit so we did not bury the bow.
Pretty cool this morning in Ludington, 37 degrees. Must have been in the 50’s when we got to Racine with the wind blowing probably 15 mph. Nice marina with friendly staff and gave a a nice broadside dock at the restaurant so the walking is a minimum. Lot of sail boats here.
If mother nature is good to us we will be in Chicago tomorrow.
The one picture is a salmon that some guy caught inside the harbor fishing. Pretty good size fish for casting off the break wall, who needs to go charter fishing!
Great day on the water. Boats started leaving Charlevoix at 6:30 am, an hour before sunrise. We left about 9:00 am and the wind was out of the northeast pushing us along as we went. Once we cleared the Manitou Island channel we were in Lake Michigan proper and there were swells from yesterdays gale winds. We stopped at Frankfort for fuel as we were going to cross to Sheboygan Wisconsin. After leaving, we set a course to cross the lake but after about 12 miles the swells were just to uncomfortable so we changed plans for Ludington. Stopped at the Municipal Marina. Diesel fuel is $3.85 per gallon, best we have seen yet. We will try for Racine Wisconsin tomorrow. Great dinner at the Blu Moon restaurant.
The 1st picture is the Sleeping Bear Dunes, not too far from Frankfort and the 2nd picture is “Leaving Charlevoix” .
I walked with Candy to the Pine River inlet on Lake Michigan. Difficult to walk against the wind. Their prediction was 20 to 25 knots out of the NW with waves 6 to 9 feet. The waves made it but I think the wind may have been a little more. It doesn’t matter we are not going out. Tomorrow is for gale warnings with winds to 40 knots out of the South, and waves 8 to 12 feet.
THe last several pictures are of one of the grand old woodies. This boat is about 50′ and absolutely pristine condition. The dinghy has a Florida registration but the boat is from Harbor Springs.
Left Mackinaw City today at 7:00 am, before sunrise. Great pictures of the bridge on the way to Lake Michigan and looking back at the sunrise in the east.
Lake got rough with the wind out of the wsw and wave built to 4′ consistantly, not like they were predicting. The ride was somewhat better after we turned to do south at Gray Reef. We did not have any rain as it was gone by the time we got to where it had been.
Nice day in Charlevoix and the marina is running a special of 2 days for the price of one. We had planned on spending 2 days here anyway.
Met a Canadian boat out of Midland Ontario that is on the loop also. They came in a little later and decide to stay because of the wind. They are leaving tomorrow.
Charlevoix Marina is a nice marina in the middle of town. You do not have to walk far to get to anything.
Left Rogers City Tuesday and the water was really good until we got to Nine Mile Point near the South Channel between Bois Blanc Island and Cheboygen. Wind was wipping down the channel from the northwest.
The weather on Lake Michigan included gale warnings with the winds 20 to 30 knots with gusts to 40 knots (WOW!!). It looks like there may be a window of opportunity on Saturday to move south on Lake Michigan. We will watch the weather every day.
Our friends from Indiana had a problem with one of their engines and they think they had it solved by a mechanic in Cheboygen. They arrived at Mackinaw City in time to fuel up before the marina closed for the night.
We will go into town and have dinner tonight.
The one night picture is the Big Mac Bridge lit up and not the Ambassador Bridge.
Well the wind gods were good for us on Monday and we had a great ride from Harrisville to Rogers City. New friends we met at Harrisville are from Evansville Indiana and they put their boat in at Port Clinton Ohio with the intention of boating home thru the great lakes down to the Ohio River. This is their first experience on the Great Lakes as they have always been river boaters. They are learning how the weather/wind has a much bigger influence on the lakes than the rivers. We will probably travel some of the distance with them on the Illinois River.
It looks like Tuesday will be a travel day with Mackinaw City our destination.
Well it was a successful start on Thursday and we arrived in Harrisville. The weather has not cooperated. It is now Sunday and we are still in Harrisville waiting for the winds to slacken. Maybe later today or tomorrow based on the forecast.
Met another boating couple today that are from Evansville Indiana. The live on the Ohio River and are headed home.
What a great weekend in St. Clair. All our marina friends, Ferencys, Winns and McCartneys were here tonight for a bar-b-que and a suprise Bon Voyage sendoff. Couldn’t have been better, good friends and a great end to the weekend.
Well we are moving onto the boat today. I think that will give us a better idea of how to manage everything we think we need to take and get rid of some things that we decide we can do without.
Right now we are looking at a Wednesday departure but Channel 4 this morning was showing rain for Wednesday, still a little to far off to take them seriously.