August 29, 2012
Clinton Street Landing, LaCrosse, Wi. UM 700 to Gilette Island UM 675
We are finally back on the water and it is spectacular! We had a few concerns with our motor starting out but after having it checked out by Mike and his crew at Holiday Marine in LaCrosse, we are good to go! Thanks to you folks for getting us up and running. We said aloha to Joe and pushed off at 12:48. Ringin’ the bell as we cruised onto the Misissippi, we gave a big yeeha for the return of the “Joanie Belle” to the mighty Mississippi River.
Our first day on the river was one of excitment to say the least. The motor is purring along and we begin the task of organizing things, getting things placed in a somewhat orderly fashion. The first thing we noticed is the intensley strong headwind we were fighting, could be remnants of the hurricane hitting the Gulf. They say the rain should reach us by Friday, we’ll see. We seem to be plowing through a good 2 to 3 foot chop, water splashing over the splash guard. No worries as we settle in with a much-needed beverage. The weather is beautiful with clear skies. Soon we pass our first tow carrying what seems to be a full load, we hadn’t noticed any indications of low water levels that we were led to believe by the media. Smooth sailing.
We passed the day talking about our last journey and this journey to come. We enjoy the sights of the river, the company of each other and of course, a few well-mixed beverages. The day flies by and we eventually find a nice location to pull over for the night. We waited a little too long for this and as the darkness approached, we moored our craft for the night. Weary from the long ride, the hotel rooms and just getting started, we crashed into oblivion again dreaming dreams that somehow become even stranger once on the river.
NOTE: Please be patient with the entries to the blog as signals are few and far between. At this moment, I’m sitting under some hotel stairs next to an ice machine in McGreggor, Iowa writing this. They let me use their wifi. More to come about that.