What is the Great Loop and 2018-2019 Plan?

What is the Great Loop and 2018-2019 Plan?

Getting There – Leg 1 of the Ribbon

Getting to the Great Loop is the first challenge!  There is a lot of big open water. Lake Superior tends to lay flat in August which is why we are debarking the first part of August.

Start the Ribbon Leg 1
46°35’40.1″N 90°53’18.8″W
46.594472, -90.888556
Elevation: 183m / 600feet

The Great Loop

The Great Loop is a system of waterways that encompasses the eastern portion of the United States and part of Canada.  The entire loop is approximately 6,000 miles. Per the Great Loop Cruisers’ Association, at any time, about 300 “Loopers” are tilting at the full circle. Some Loopers travel it in a single, year long trip and others break it into sections by year.

Exit the Ribbon Leg 1 / Enter the Loop
46°00’48.0″N 83°52’57.0″W
46.013333, -83.882500
Elevation: 154meters / 505feet

Estimated Timeline following the Weather

September – October
Lake Michigan
The Illinois River
The Upper Mississippi River
The Ohio River
The Cumberland River
The Tennessee River
Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway

November – January
The Gulf Intracoastal Waterway
Crossing the Gulf of Mexico
Lake Okeechobee Waterway

February – March

April – May
Atlantic Intercoastal Waterway

June – July
Hudson River
Lake Champlain
St Lawrence Seaway
The Great Lakes/Canada’s Heritage Canals/Georgian Bay

August (starting home)
Lake Michigan
The Illinois River
The Mississippi River


Going Home – Leg 2 of the Ribbon

Leg 2 of the Ribbon is when we ‘cross our wake’, completing the Loop, and return to Minnesota up the Mississippi. We will re-travel our start of the first portion of the Loop. When we hit the Mississippi River we will turn starboard and follow the Northern Star to head home.

Exit the Loop / Start the Ribbon Leg 2
38°58’06.1″N 90°27’59.1″W
38.968372, -90.466402
Elevation: 127meters / 417feet

See you in St Paul in October <year tbd> !

The End
44°51’25.8″N 93°00’48.7″W
44.857158, -93.013521
Elevation: 208meters / 682feet