Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Finally underway!

Well we finally had the electronic update completed on Friday 9/25 and we had fun going out with our installer that afternoon.  The boat can now be driven with autopilot through the Garmin GPS so no hands need to touch the wheel!!  But of course some wheel turning will still occur.  My iPad can connect with the Garmin so I can follow our course and navigate.  I also now have Active Captain on my iPad so while we are cruising I can identify all anchorages and marinas in the area to make decisons about how far to go and where the best place is to stop.

We were delayed with our leave when we found we had need for a new generator water pump and that part could not be shipped and installed until Monday 9/28.  So we spent the weekend going to a farmer's market and other stores for more provisions and cleaning the inside of the boat.  The chaos is gone, hurray!!  We even watched some football just as if we were home.

The view of the marina as we took on fuel and prepared to finally get underway up the Tennessee River.
Leaving the fuel dock, ahead is Lake Barkley which is one side of Land Between the Lakes.  The Tennessee River is on the other and soon we will take the cut over to it.
Just cruising under the bridge to Paducah which crosses over the man made cut that connects the Cumberland River (Lake Barkley) to the Tennessee River (Kentucky Lake)
On the Tennesse River using new toys to drive the boat and navigate the channel
The new prize possesion with a 16" screen so us older folks can clearly read the data!!
Passing a barge on our way to our second cove on this waterway.  We stayed at 2 different quiet coves  traveling about 20 miles each day, nice slow pace.  We are definitely on boat time now and enjoying the peace of it all!
PS: my ankle is still a bit sore but ice does the trick and I can maneuver around the boat safely albeit slowly. Leaving bad luck behind us!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Here we sit!!

So our 2-3 day installation of new electronics that will make our journey safer and likely more fun for
Al, is now into day 4 and we are thinking it will be done by tomorrow with a "sea trial" in the morning.  That is when Al and I get to play with the new equipment and be sure it is all installed well and that we know how to use it all.

Then our few hour job to change oil and impellers on perfectly working engines and generator yesterday turned into a 2 day job and our generator quit working!  The present diagnosis is that we need a new water pump which can only be delivered and installed on Monday.  Thus we continue to sit in this lovely marina.

The good news is that all this sitting around has helped me heal so now I can walk on 2 feet with light support of a cane and bruises are changing colors!  I am bored to tears since I can't exercise or do anything about the chaos on this boat.
What a mess!!
The plan now is to try and enjoy this marina, play with new stuff and heal my body, then we hope to head to the Tennessee River on Monday as early as we can get going.  More later!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Our extended stay at Green Turtle Bay

We cruised into this marina on Saturday to walk and have brunch with Ann and Rob before they headed home.  This is a beautiful and expansive resort with every service available.  We spent Saturday near by on anchor and then moved into a transient slip among many other looper boats.
Here we are, second boat from the right.
So Sunday we settled in and met many folks on their way to Florida full of stories of coming down the Mississippi which we will face at the end of this loop journey.  (ugh!)
Monday our boat was loaded with lots of new electronics to aid our navigation and while the electronics guy worked steadily, we spent our time on chores.  Which is why at dinner time I was just finishing up laundry and stepped from the galley to the berth in the bow to put the sheets where they belong and I fell into a hatch that had been left open to inspect wires.  It was a shock and painful but my first aid knowledge kicked in and I had ice on deep bruises, a sprained ankle and a deep cut bandaged tightly to hold it together in time to enjoy some take out dinner!  
My well wrapped ankle and toe. It is painful to walk on but people are so helpful and nice so I have a borrowed cane to hobble around with.
This will be a slight set back making Al do all of the boat work and meals for a few days.  So now I am sitting in the marina office while Inspeyered 2 is hauled out of the water as part of this electronic installation.
Hard to see that she is hanging in a sling across the bay from the marina
We are hoping the work is completed sometime tomorrow and we will then be on our way on the Tennessee River, a wide and scenic body of water.  Also hoping I will be walking on both feet by then!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

In Kentucky and almost off the Cumberland River

Today started with a more early take off,  pulling up anchor and cleaning the decks before breakfast!  We cruised with the help of Rob at the helm, giving Captain Al a bit of a break.  The highlight was passing the Kentucky State Penitentury which is an old and awesome building.

No bad guys came aboard so we continued on our way!!
But we did pick up a hitchhiker along the way that was a rather attractive addition to the boat!

We found a lovely ancborage in a cove and watched barges move down river while we floated in the water with beer in hand!  Because we all need our walk, we took the whaler, Victory Lap to shore  and found a fine country road to walk in the Land Between the Lakes.
Al with Victory Lap at a boat ramp 
Later Al and Rob played rescue to help a stranded boater.
And returned happy heros

Thursday, September 17, 2015

After cruising today for about 5 hours we departed Tennessee and entered state number 2, Kentucky.  It was a beautiful day but it continues to take way longer to cover a short distance!! We had contact with other "loopers" that we passed along the way.  They were heading to Nashville on a side trip and encouraged us with lots of advice.  It is feeling more like we really are on the Great Loop with other like minded boat owners.  Our day ended with anchor issues but we learned how to use our secondary anchor that we previously never used so maybe it was meant to be one more lesson.  Onward we go to Green Turtle Bay Marina to have lots of work done on the boat and to restock and organize the larder.

We have gotten nice comments but please give us your full name so we are sure of your identity!  Also if you know an easy way to pull pictures from my Ipad to this blog, let me know because all kinds of googling has not helped.  We have some pics to post but have not been successful.

Just crossing the Kentucky state line on the Cumberland River
The crew is happy to be in a new state!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

We're off and enjoying!

 Well friends, we finally took off yesterday midafternoon with a send off from our good friend Glenda.  When I learn to put pictures that she took on this blog you can see our departure.  It was a mix of excitement, nervous energy and saddness leaving our land home and friends.
We then connected with our buddies Ann and Rob Strebler in Nashville and their daughter joined us for dinner.  The four of us departed today and have made it all the way to Clarksville to a nice quiet and new marina.  The weather has been gorgeous and the cruising uneventful.  It is amazing how long it takes by boat to travel a short distance around Nashville!!  So the dream has begun and we hope you follow us along.  Pictures to follow!
Bedraggled and dirty but ready to take off!

Cruising away from Drakes Creek for the last time!
Leaving a wake to drift into our home dock, bye to our land home for some time!

Friday, September 4, 2015

We are about to embark on a waterway circumnavigation of the eastern US, known as the Great Loop Cruise. From our home in Hendersonville, TN near Nashville, we will head downstream on the Cumberland River toward Land Between the Lakes and the Tennessee River. The Tennessee River will take us to the Tenn-Tom waterway and Mobile Bay. Then we can follow the Alabama and Florida coastlines on the Gulf of Mexico to Key West.  The route continues up the east coast of the US to NYC, up the Hudson River and to the Great Lakes, through Canadian waterways, Georgian Bay, and around the lower peninsula of Michigan. Heading back south, the route goes through Lake Michigan to Chicago, then the Illinois, Mississippi, and Ohio Rivers to the Cumberland River, completing our Great Loop. For those who are interested, a route map and more information can be found at:

Follow our adventure on this blog.