20-OCT-2020 Tuesday – Hoppies Marina, Imperial, MO (~UMR mile 159) to Little Diversion Channel, Cape Girardeau, MO (~UMR mile 49) 98 nautical miles (~112.8 statute miles)
Elevation: 314 feet
Total Elevation Change: 3 feet
We rocked and rolled all night long from the constant onslaught of tows passing by. I have no reason to complain about this. We knew this would be the case as Hoppies Marina has no protection around it.
Dale kept saying “Come on Mary. It’s time to get up. It’s not as cold as yesterday.” Yeah, maybe two degrees. I’m not going to fall for that one again soon.
All was forgiven when Dale served me a warm breakfast on the helm. Home fries, omelet with salsa, fresh tomatoes and toast.
Along the Way
No locks today. All we have to do is just go down the river, about 100 miles of it.
Selma Hall MO – A limestone castle with a four-story gun tower used during the Civil War sits among 2,300 wooded acres on the bluffs of the Mississippi River. The 18-room castle is said to be a replica of a castle on Lake Como in Italy. Most locals still call it Kennett’s castle for the wealthy family who built it more than 160 years ago.
Huge mining operation. Pulling out rock and sending it out.
It is kind of eerie looking at all the wing dams above water. The Core of Engineers has really put a significant effort into managing the Mississippi River.
Crazy turbulence. The auto pilot had its work cut out today keeping us on path. We twisted our way through multiple stretches of the river. On several occasions the turbulence spun us at least 90 degrees.
It started raining heavily mid-day. We moved to the lower helm.
What looms ahead
Home Sweet Home tonight is in Little Diversion River. We ended up anchoring right inside the mouth of the river as it quickly became too shallow to navigate further upstream. Two years ago we were here with seven other Looper boats. The water was at the tree lines.
Illinois is a long long long long state. To be exact, it’s 581 Mississippi River statue miles along the western Illinois border. We then turn up the Ohio River at Cairo and follow Illinois’ riverbanks for another 58 miles to the Cumberland River in Kentucky. By tomorrow night we will have traveled 639 Illinois border river miles.
River Rats 106 – Wing Dams
The Mississippi River has thousands of wing dams, manmade rockpiles extending out into the river from the shoreline, deflecting the current to the main navigation channel. These historical structures were built with federal funds under the supervision of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Some 1,900 wing dams and closing dams, both known as “river training structures” by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, were built as part of the first attempts to control the depth of the Mississippi River and maintain a navigation channel.