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Old 12-10-2012, 08:31 AM   #1
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2012 Chattanooga Lighted Boat Parade

The 2012 lighted boat parade in downtown Chattanooga was this past weekend- wow was it great!

Coffee in pilothouse just after dawn heading down river to downtown:


Downtown Chatt:


Our boat tied up in downtown on one of the floating docks (much easier access than on the hard wall!):




Downtown waterfront as we head up river to parade starting point:


My good friend and fellow broker's 48' Jefferson:


Boats in the parade:




The Southern Belle riverboat and downtown:


Complete with firework show at the end of the parade:






and a FULL lock going back up river Sunday afternoon with 10 boats in the chamber from 32' to 45' in size. Went smooth with everyone cooperating:


I have more pictures on facebook here:
2012 Chattanooga Christmas boat parade- great times! | Facebook

It was a great parade and SO nice to do it in downtown. The waterfront on both sides had thousands of people all over watching the parade and fireworks. It was beautiful with the city lights and everything and what a great Christmas time with my wife and the kids. We are doing another small parade on Lake Chickamauga just upstream from downtown Chatt this coming weekend so any local TN River boaters (moonstruck!) PM me and I can get you the details!
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Old 12-11-2012, 09:22 AM   #2
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Very pretty WS. Our local version is this Sunday.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:01 AM   #3
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Great pics Woodsong. Everyone's boat looks very nice. That lock looks a bit on the crowded side. When you go in there, do the lockmasters assign you spaces or do you just fit in where you can?
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:27 AM   #4
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Great pics Woodsong. Everyone's boat looks very nice. That lock looks a bit on the crowded side. When you go in there, do the lockmasters assign you spaces or do you just fit in where you can?
Really great pics, Tony. I live one block over on the South side of the dock at the Walnut St. Bridge. I learned my lesson about locking through with large groups. For the most part you just grab a bollard or raft on where you can. It happens after River Bend Festival and the Christmas parade. I took a look at all the gasoline powered boats with slightly impaired drivers, and decided I would wait for the crowds to thin out from then on. The parade is always a highlight, and a good way to end the boating season.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:31 AM   #5
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Thanks- yes the lock was crowded. We were fairly maxed out. 1 additional boat could maybe have been brought in but due to how people got on the pins it actually was full to capacity. 10 boats total. It was pretty much sort it out amongst yourselves type arrangement. I ended up on the forward most pin even though I was the 3-4th boat to enter the actual lock. Had the boats on the pin immediately behind me gone to the forward most pin or waited to get on their pin, we could have added another boat to my tie up but as it worked out we were only able to squeeze me and a 32 marinette past them to tie off on the forward pin, then their raft up behind us (the hatt and the 34 express came in after we were in), then 4 boats behind that on the last pin. The express cruiser behind me is not tied up to the wall- they are rafted to the hatt which is rafted to the 2 carvers which is tied to the pin on that side. However, the express had to put fenders out on their port side due to just barely fitting in so it was a full house.
Current lock chamber is 60'x360' and they are slowly building a 110'x600' new lock right next to it. I forget the exact rise but the lock has an elevation gain/loss in the chamber of around 50-60', +/-. Wheeler lock further down stream a few days has a drop of around 90-95' and is the deepest lock in the eastern USA.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:35 AM   #6
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Really great pics, Tony. I live one block over on the South side of the dock at the Walnut St. Bridge. I learned my lesson about locking through with large groups. For the most part you just grab a bollard or raft on where you can. It happens after River Bend Festival and the Christmas parade. I took a look at all the gasoline powered boats with slightly impaired drivers, and decided I would wait for the crowds to thin out from then on. The parade is always a highlight, and a good way to end the boating season.
I agree 100% Don- usually large crowds in the lock can be chaos. Express cruiser in the picture actually got turned sideways in the lock and whacked his bow into the wall and almost crashed into the swim platforms of the hatt and carvers. No damage done though so all ended well. Sunday when we went through the lock the Bearcat was moving some barges around and we had a one lock through window in between a 3 hour delay in the morning and 3 hours later in the afternoon. We were the only recreational lock through allowed in the middle of the afternoon (it was around 1 or so when we went through). We knew the Bearcat was there moving barges so we left just in time for the projected window for the lock to open. I literally got to the dam 2 minutes before the lockmaster blew the horn allowing boats to enter. The 4 boats that got there before me had been idling around for about 1-2 hours waiting for the lock to open to recreational boats. my friends that waited for the next lock through didn't get to island cove til around 8-9 p.m. so we were glad to get through, even with the crowd.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:51 AM   #7
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Tony, that reminds me of a radio conversation between the lock master and a local boater.

Chickamauga lock master this is so and so house boat asking for an upstream locking. (speech was slurred)

Chickamauga Lock to houseboat asking for locking. I have the John Henry locking through. There will about a three hour delay.

So and so houseboat to Chickamauga lock master. Let me check.

Silence

So and so houseboat to Chickamauga lock master. That won't work. I only have 45 minutes of ice left.

No response from the lock master

Such is life along the Mighty Tennessee River..
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Old 12-11-2012, 09:35 PM   #8
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Tony, thanks for the pictures; they're making me homesick. We've watched the parade several years from the porch at PYC.

Don, we gave up fighting the drunks locking through after Riverbend several years ago. One year there was a standoff between the lockmaster, who refused to open the lower gates, and several drunk house boaters, who were blocking the entrance and refused to back away from the gates. The LM, who was trying to lock a string of barges through, finally opened the gates with a little extra water behind them and "flushed" the boats out of the way. It's something to see a 60-ft houseboat pinwheeling down the river (from a safe distance). I think we got back to our slip at 5 a.m. that year.
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Old 12-11-2012, 10:26 PM   #9
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Tony, thanks for the pictures; they're making me homesick. We've watched the parade several years from the porch at PYC.

Don, we gave up fighting the drunks locking through after Riverbend several years ago. One year there was a standoff between the lockmaster, who refused to open the lower gates, and several drunk house boaters, who were blocking the entrance and refused to back away from the gates. The LM, who was trying to lock a string of barges through, finally opened the gates with a little extra water behind them and "flushed" the boats out of the way. It's something to see a 60-ft houseboat pinwheeling down the river (from a safe distance). I think we got back to our slip at 5 a.m. that year.
You gotta love those lockmasters. They own the lock. and will get the job done. You've got to respect them too. I did one locking with a full load. That was enough for me. We would usually just spend the night down stream.

By the way, I missed the chili supper at PYC last month. John Wesley used to do it every year. I think the Morgan brothers do it now.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:10 PM   #10
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By the way, I missed the chili supper at PYC last month. John Wesley used to do it every year. I think the Morgan brothers do it now.
We missed it, too. BTW, my son, who's a sculptor, works for Steve Morgan part time, learning to weld. Small world.
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