Monday, November 3, 2014

On To Demopolis

Day 69
Miles today: 50     Total miles: 1,838
Hours today: 5
Locks today: 0 Total locks: 28
States: 9

Yesterday we left Columbus, MS, and continued down the TennTom waterway. We locked through 4 different locks, each one waiting for our small group of boats with green lights and wide- open gates. That was marvelous- no waiting whatsoever! We planned to anchor above the Hefflin Lock, but we found the relatively small anchorage already packed with 7 boats. So we continued to just below Hefflin, and anchored in an oxbow with Passage and Estrellita. It was a quiet, beautiful spot, and we were set before 4:30- it certainly gets dark early now.  Becky is still a bit nervous about anchoring, but our anchor did not drag at all. Mark is the anchor guy, who drops the anchor and tells Becky which way to move the boat. When the anchor is set we both help put out the snubber. We have several ways of keeping track of our position, including an anchor alarm app called Drag Queen that will wake us up if we start to drag in the middle of the night. So far that has not happened.

We had no cell phone signal at all last night, so we were completely undisturbed. We ran our generator to cook supper and to run the heat before bedtime. An uninsulated fiberglass boat sitting in cold water can get a bit cool at 27 degrees, but we have great heating and air conditioning. 

This morning we waited about an hour before pulling the hook due to fog. (Again) We were on our merry way by 7:00. Switching back to standard time means that our crusing can start close to 6 AM. Not sure that's a good thing. No locks today! The biggest highlight was passing the White Cliffs of Epes.

We arrived at Kingfisher Bay Marina in Demopolis around 1 pm. We were happy to see Bud and Sue on When I'm 64, fellow Iowans. We had not seen them since the Rendezvous at Joe Wheeler. 

Mark pumped out the holding tank while Becky took advantage of the amazing laundry facilities here- such a good feeling to have everything clean! There are quite a few Loopers here, so of course we gathered for docktails at 5:00. The Demopolis Lock is just below us, and tomorrow a number of us will  pass through it en masse.  We hear the lockmaster is quite a stickler for detail, insisting everyone contact him with boat name, registration number, etc. before being allowed to enter the lock. We've never experienced this requirement. We will all be on the radio at 5:30 am requesting lockage. Most of us hope to cover 70 to  90 miles tomorrow, so an early start is needed.

We used the marina loaner car to go to a Mexiaxn restaurant with Foster and Susan from Quo Vadimus. Demopolis is a popular gathering place. Several big boat insurance companies designate this location as the southernmost place boaters are allowed to be during hurricane season while retaining full coverage. It's a complex formula involving named storms entering the Gulf of Mexico and deductibles, coverage, etc. Whatever the equation, everything is good as of November 1, the official end of hurricane season.  Boats are heading south in droves! When we leave here, the next marina will be in Mobile. That means 2-3 nights at anchor for everyone. We probably will not have decent cell phone or Internet until we get to Movile, so no more blogging until them.

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