Life on the edge

Life on the edge

Aug 29, 2019 Thursday Bluff Harbor Marina, mile 404, Burlington, IA  to Rock River – Mile 479, Rock Island, IL    75 nautical miles.

41°28’51.0″N 90°36’39.9″W
41.480835, -90.611074
Elevation: 550 ft               Locks: 3  Ascent: 31 feet
                                             Lock 18, Gladstone,  IL / Burlington, IA
                                             Lock 17, New Boston, IL
                                             Lock 16, Muscatine, IA
Remaining Statue Miles: 351

Along the Way

Life on the edge. Heading north of the tension line.

Life on the edge. Sounded like 20 miles south of here on the Mississippi River was not the place to be. The Coast Guard broadcast warnings for about 6 hours that the Fort Madison Lift Bridge – mile 384 was closed to navigation due to high winds and severe weather.

I’m not taking any more pictures today unless they are SUNNY.

We had been advised the guys at Lock 17 had a bit of an attitude. They did. They must have thought they were bigwigs or something. Power play. They let us into the lock and raised right away. Things looked good. It changed once we were at the upper water level.  We had to hang on the lock wall watching two lock attendants chat for about 30 minutes before we could carry on upstream. Finally one of them sloooooowwwly walked over and pushed the button to open the lock gates. OK, I fudged the wait time… It was really 25 minutes.
We still thanked them politely when we left.

Dredges. The dredge in the back goes all the way across the river. It was sucking stuff out and piping it to shore. The dredge had to move so we could get around it and carry on up river. There are two other actively working dredges on the right. Quite large scale operation!!


Commodity Movement Comparison

Method Weight
How many are needed to carry 1500 tons How many are needed to carry the 22,500 tons Lengths of the methods for moving 22,500 tons
Barge 1500 tons 1 1 standard
(3×5 15 barges)
¼ mile
(3 foot ball fields or more)
Railcar 112 tons 15 200 railcars 2¼ miles long
26 tons 60 870 tractor trailers 7¼ miles long

A towboat may be 150 feet long, four stories high, and 6000 horsepower. (12 times the horsepower of yes dear)

A standard barge is 200 feet long, 35 feet wide, and when loaded to its 1500-ton capacity needs a nine-foot depth of water to float.

Nauti Words

Meaning: the most important person in a group or undertaking and is often used in a derogatory manner.
Origin: Senior officers in the English Navy were known as “bigwigs” because they wore huge wigs. Bigwig officers aboard ships were often disliked.

Carry on
Meaning: Continue onward or go on with a given task
Origin: In the days of sail, the officer of the deck kept a weather eye constantly on the slightest change in the wind so that the sails could be reefed or added as necessary to ensure the fastest headway. Whenever a good breeze came along, the order to “carry on” would be given. It meant to hoist every bit of canvas the yards* could carry.
* A yard is a spar on a mast from which sails are set. Typically describes the horizontal spars used on square rigged sails.

Meaning: present or deal with something in a vague, noncommittal, or inadequate way, especially so as to conceal the truth or mislead
Origin: Expression is believed to come from a Captain Fudge, also known as “Lying Fudge” who was a notorious liar in the 17th Century.

Drolleries and Yuks

Where does a fish keep his money?
     In the river bank

Ponder this

Why is it when you transport something by car its called shipment, but when you transport something by ship it’s called cargo?

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