Cruising on Island Time

America's Great Loop here we come

Posts by cruisingonislandtime

Crossing our wake!

Posted on November 23, 2019

Friday, November 15 – Indiantown. At first light, we departed Fort Myers thinking we could transit the 5 locks (yes more locks), cross Lake Okeechobee and make Stuart about 120 miles away. The forecast was for rain most the day but that’s okay. Lightning and wind not so much. We have travelled across the Caloosahatchee / Okeechobee waterway before so we pretty much knew what to expect. Most of the waterway is very rural with sightings of cows, alligators, ospreys, and manatees. In fact the last time we crossed, we had manatees in at least a couple of the locks with us. Got off to a good start and able to run at about 20 mph. No problems with the Franklin lock; got right…

Pensacola to Fort Myers

Posted on November 18, 2019

Thursday/ Friday, November 7 – 8 – Destin Harbor. Departed Pensacola in the morning and headed out into Mobile Bay which is a big bay. As we were turning east into the intercoastal waterway, we spotted a couple of other looper boats that were just ahead of us. One of the boats we had seen before. Travelled along together for a while but we were going slightly faster than they were so we passed them. Originally, we had planned to anchor out in a remote anchorage just past Destin but Bob needed to have a document notarized and sent off so we opted to anchor in Destin Harbor (pesky work thing!). Saw tons of dolphins along the way and some were very playful and…

Gulf Shores, AL to Pensacola, FL

Posted on November 7, 2019

Wednesday, October 30 – Saunders Yachtworks / Gulf Shores, AL. Promptly Wednesday morning before 8am, we headed into the haul out slip and watched as they hauled Island Time out of the water. We were anxious to see the bottom of the boat to check for any damage to the hull or propellers. Sure enough, we had two bent tips on the starboard propeller and a couple of gashes on the hull below the waterline compliments of the Mississippi River. Normally, if we are in clear Florida waters we would be diving under the boat to check ourselves. But along the rivers from Chicago to Mobile (about 1,000 miles) the water (for most of it) is muddy and not clear. No desire to get…

Columbus, MS to Gulf Shores, AL

Posted on October 31, 2019

Tuesday, October 22 – Pickensville, AL MM308. We bid farewell to Columbus, MS and departed for an anchorage in Pickensville, AL which is our 18th state visited on our journey. Today’s journey would take us through 1 lock and 28 miles. We departed the marina with the crew from Pearl and two other boats and headed to the Stennis Lock which is less than a mile from the marina. One of the boats was Camelot whom we had met at Kaskaskia lock wall several weeks before. Pearl, Camelot and us were traveling at the same speed and headed to the same anchorage before the Tom Bevell Lock. Island Time took the lead today so we were the official “log masters” which meant we were…

Luka, MS to Columbus, MS

Posted on October 26, 2019

Sunday/ Monday, October 13/ 14th – Aqua Yacht Harbor Marina, Luka, MS. Woke up at our Wolfe Island anchorage to a super foggy morning. Completely fogged in where you couldn’t see 10’ in front of you so had to wait for it to clear. We had called the Pickwick Lock earlier to find out status of locking through and lockmaster said it was really foggy down there and to be very careful. At one point, we thought it was clearing and were making preparations to get going when all of a sudden the fog rolled right back in. It finally cleared at around 10am and we got underway. Arrived at the Pickwick Lock (14 miles) and had to wait about 2 ½ hours as…

Green Turtle Bay, KY to Wolfe Island, TN

Posted on October 13, 2019

Sunday, October 6th – Green Turtle Bay.  In anticipation of leaving Tuesday, we did boat maintenance such as changing out the racor fuel filters and engine zincs. In the afternoon, some of the loopers made arrangements for a looper get-together at the yacht club. As mentioned, there must have been around 40 looper boats at GTB so the club was packed with loopers. The yacht club and the marina truly appreciate the loopers and the business. One of the locals at the club bar said “we love loopers and glad you are here”. After cocktails we had dinner with Greg & Sonia of Golden Daze, and the crews of B Side & Seabactical. Fun evening. Monday, October 7th – Green Turtle Bay (GTB). Since…

Cairo, IL to Grand Rivers, KY

Posted on October 6, 2019

Sunday/ Monday, 9/29- 9/30 – Paducah, KY. The last nine miles of the Mississippi were relatively uneventful except for quite a few northbound tows. At MM 0 we turned into the Ohio River which has us going up river and against the current. What a completely different river! First, the color of the water changed from chocolate muddy-dirty water to fairly clean greenish water. Second, no turbulence. Even without the backwash from the tows, the Mississippi is turbulent due to the strong currents and eddies. Sometimes the eddies would toss our boat around making it hard to steer. Third, almost no debris. Once we got past the first couple of miles with dozens of parked barges and tows, it was calm and pretty. The…