Voyage to the Gulf
I’VE HAD IT! I’M DONE! I’M OUT’A HERE!
I had so much fun in the last few months — putting the boat in the water, learning to sail, and venturing out on Lake Michigan passages for the first time this year — that, as the cold temperatures began to loom, I didn’t want the fun to end. Therefore, I decided “I’m sailing South”.
So, being vaguely aware of the “America’s Great Loop” — where folks (mainly retirees with more time on their hands) navigate a circuit of waterways around the entire Eastern United States — I figured this would be my escape plan… at least for the first leg. It would also be my stab at the award for making the circuit… as a working man.
So, after getting a “kitchen pass” from my wife — bless her for being such a supportive and tolerant woman (I think I won the lottery there) — we devised a plan where I’d motor the sailboat to the Gulf for November, fly-back for Thanksgiving, then return to the boat to sail it to Florida… where we’d all then meet around Christmas/New Years for a big family vacation in the semi-tropics.
The inland waterways from Waukegan, IL to Mobile, AL will take me along this ~1,300 statue mile route:
- Lake Michigan
- Illinois River
- Mississippi River
- Ohio River
- Tennessee River
- Tenn-Tom Waterway
- Tombigbee River
- Mobile River
That’ll be about 30-40 days of motoring along at just 5 Knots for 4-10 hours a day. Adventure indeed.
But, those of you who know me may ask: “But you’re not retired… how are you gonn’a find time for this?” Good question. I have the luxury of being a 100% remote worker… so, on weekdays, I plan to motor in the morning, anchor for work (I have both cellphone tethering and now Starlink Satellite Internet aboard), then motor again in the evening. It should work splendidly.
So that’s the plan! It’s only days away from departure now and I’m still working on the entire route plan and timing. I’ll post here once complete and you can follow my adventures progress… especially on the tracking page (I’m also considering running a live webcam aboard). This is gonn’a be FUN!