Our boating buddies, Larry and Diane, invited us to do a trip on the Arkansas River….they’ve traveled to Florida to boat with us several times so we figured we should head their way…
Left early Sunday morning…stopped at Carl’s to pick up the trolling motor and battery..fill water jugs and left. … didn’t even get out of Florida and we blew a tire…must have hit something because the rim was dented….stopped at a Walmart and bought 4 new tires…these wheels are different so now we don’t have a spare….that’s why all new tires.
4 hours later we were back on the road…taking turns driving…we decide to stop for a few hours sleep in the boat at a Flying J truckstop in Birmingham AL.
We didn’t get to Ft Gibson, OK until after dark…followed the GPS and we got lost…finally had to get directions. By the time we got to the ramp we decided we’d launch in the morning…too tired and that is when mistakes are made.
Visited with them for a few minutes then went to bed.
Larry and Diane were already in the water…they launched yesterday.
Sunrise…Jim and Larry going over some stuff while the fishing boats got launched.
We waited until they were done…then we got wet. It takes us a bit longer to launch and we don’t like to tie up the ramp.
We both have Yukon Deltas…Larry’s is a year or two older than ours and you can see a few changes. Meander is a 25 ft and I think Larry’s is a 23 ft…so interior is different too. He has real doors and our are sliding.
In the “diamonds”…
They sure get through the water nice.
A little side trip….had to cross the bar at the entrance…kind of scary because there was so much dead wood sitting all over…but we made it. There is a camp site here.
They “U” turned and we are heading back to the Arkansas River.
White Pelicans taking advantage of some of the debris along the river.
Heading up a side creek for our first anchorage…the tall things on the R are for tying up barges.
We rafted up…had supper…Larry and Diane supplied ribs…after dinner and a visit we moved away and anchored. This way we can swing into the wind. Our generator is on the rear deck and Larry’s is on the bow.
Had a beautiful sunrise.
They forgot coffee so Jim took a thermos over to them. Had to bail a lot of water out…Jim fixed a leak and it was good last time on the St Johns River…but leaking bad now.
Here comes the sun….
After coffee we headed out again…nice cool night…even needed a light blanket.
In the lock…they have ballards that you put a rope around and they move up or down with the water…no messy ropes hanging down the side to hang onto.
I love the ledges….
lots of debris from the flooding in the shallow areas.
They are dredging out the channel.
Diane is captain now. Ours had a top rail like this one…but Jim took it off and used it to make the things that hold up our rear deck roof. Ours were wood and had rotted out.
There they go…our “river guides”.
We are heading to a marina where we will spend the night…and have dinner at a seafood restaurant that Larry and Diane have been to before…..Shad’s here is a link to their FB page if you are in the area. https://www.facebook.com/SHADS-CATFISH-HOLE-169596926474/timeline/
We stayed at the http://www.applegatemarina.com/
Spring helped us dock….and fuel…but the best help was when she told us the next fuel stop had been wrecked during the flooding …saved us….we cannot carry enough fuel to get there and back or to the next one.….she also offered to give us a ride to Shad’s Catfish Hole, and told us to call when we were ready to come back to the boats …the owner would pick us up….very nice people.