October 1, 2015

Arkansas River trip 2015 part 2


Sunrise at the Applegate Marina. They have open slips and covered slips.


We are in a covered slip but it has very high walk ways so Larry and Diane moved to another covered slip where the dock was lower. We are so small you can hardly see us.


The “captains” had to have a confab…

047 c

Before we got to the marina we pulled off to the side …anchored…pulled the dingy near the bow..deflated it and pulled it aboard…Larry loaned us the plywood for the dingy floor…left ours home….we always manage to forget something even though I make a list.


Yesterday we had a little head wind against the current so it was a little choppy…today is a nice smooth ride.


Since we cannot get to the next fuel stop down river we had to turn around and head back. We are nearing the dredge.


It has a long hose that blasts the debris away…see the bit of tan on the L of the picture? That is a shoal that was made by dredging.066x

Back to the White Pelicans and the stranded trees.


Approaching the lock and dam…Larry called…it was going to be about 35 minutes ..they had a tow inside.


The tow is the big white tug.


Going down….


We were anchored on the far side of the river waiting our turn…time for a quick lunch.


The lock master called Larry and told him we could start easing that way…I wanted a picture of the tug and barges coming out…surprise…empty lock…when it looked like it was going down..it was really moving away from us out of the lock.

I don’t know how far the ride up is but you can see how high the water gets(brown) before they open the gates.


Toss a line around the ballard…Larry had us string a line from bow to stern on each side..just in case…so you take your boat hook..catch the line and slip it over the ballard…use the boat hook to fend off the wall and up you go. Looks like the gates are opening.


Didn’t see a lot of wildlife along the river …there are White Herons and Blue Herons…and flood debris.


I thought the flat rock at the top would be a great place for a camp…


Larry did get a few pictures of us….guess that proves we were here. Even our windows are different..ours have a bit of a slant to them…Larry’s are rectangle.


We don’t have many pictures of us cruising. We don’t look too bad out there. Jim put the windows that tip out in. They were left over from the camper he dismantled. The kitchen window went into the head. (the little one up high)


Following the “river guides”….they did let us lead once in awhile. I made screens for our rear deck…a must for Florida. Now we can enjoy a glass of wine at night..watch for bats and cruising gators..listen to the frogs and keep the mosquitos out.


It wasn’t too long before we caught up with the barge.


4 long and 3 wide….takes up a lot of river ..it was fun watching him navigate corners.


We were going to try to pass the tug and barge…but even at full speed we were just making a little headway….so Larry called them and told them we’d drop back in behind them..our boats look pretty small next to something like this.


A few hours up the river and Larry found us another side creek to anchor in for the night. We had to watch where we were going..lots of debris..fallen logs etc…they even got hung up on one for a few minutes….and we bumped one.


This path for the cows was between our boats…we both had generators going and some of the cows were a bit timid…most wildlife we’ve seen other than birds…


Larry pulled anchor and moved closer to us so Diane could see more cows…boat hooking a beer to a neighbor.



Another beautiful sunrise….last day on the water.


We got back to the launch ramp and hauled out. Took some time to get the stuff stored in the back of the truck. We took everything that had any weight to it out of the boat…

We thought of going to Grand Lake OK and spending a week on the water with Larry and Diane but changed our minds…figured we’d be pressing our luck by adding several hundred miles to the trip.


Had good luck all the way to I 10 in Florida. Overcast and cool…tires and hubs were lukewarm the whole way….got to Florida and the sky cleared up..sun came out…tires got hot..so we let them cool during driver changes.

Stopped at Carl’s to drop off the trolling motor and battery…let the tires cool again then headed home. Got here before dark. Jim had to back the boat down our road so we didn’t have to turn it around in the yard. We weren’t sure how much rain had fallen and it can get muddy.

Water time was too short…but it sure was good to be out there with our boating buddies ..Larry and Diane..we’ve spend many months on the water together over the years…Grand Lake OK, St Johns River FL, ICW, Okeechobee Waterway, Black Warrior River AL, Tenn-Tom River TN. Now we can add the Arkansas River.

When we had our MacGregor 26X sailboat ..Larry and two friends trailered down with their sailboat and we sailed from the W side of Lake Okeechobee FL down around the tip of FL up into Biscayne Bay , across the waterway to Lake Okeechobee and back to our launch site.

We’ll have to plan another trip….maybe one half way between us…or the St Johns River…my favorite…lots of gators.

HEY Larry…..we’d offer you a beer but I don’t think your boat hook is long enough…LOL

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