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Old 11-29-2016, 07:21 PM   #1
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NW Alabama to Houston, Tx.

After 62 miles and 2 locks, we are in Counce, Tn at Grand Harbor Marina. We left in not quite sunrise and settled in at 3:30 PM. Now sitting under a tornado watch and ready to spring into action again at crack of or slightly before dawn.

The first 2 photos are of us armoring the boat against the Locks. We prefer to mount the fenders horizontal. It seems to give us better protection. When we get to a marina, just untie ione end and let 'er drop. The 3rd photo is saying good bye to Joe Wheeler. The next 3 are of Wheeler Lock followed by how to load up your desk in a hurry in the dark.
Following, the next are of Wilson Lock. It is the 2nd highest lock in the US and 3rd in the world. Under normal conditions, the drop is over 90 feet.
The last photo is of white pelicans. They are absolutely beautiful, not like their cousins on the coast.

Good night.
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Cruising the Eastern U.S. Inland Waterways
Presently on the Tennessee River - Joe Wheeler State Park - Rogersville, Al.
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Old 12-01-2016, 02:15 AM   #2
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Fulton, Ms on Wednesday

We arrived in Fulton, Ms Yesterday afternoon (Wednesday). Fortunately for us, we arrived a day late. Either a tornado or straight line winds, collapsed an entire covered dock on top of the boats. Eight people were in one houseboat and fortunately for them, no one was hurt. Anyway, we are tied up here for the night and in a few hours (5 AM), I will wake up again and continue southward. Testerday was kind of cool and damp most of the day, and then finally some sunshine about 3 PM.
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Old 12-03-2016, 08:47 PM   #3
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We made it to Demopolis last night. One man on his boat had a bad fall on the finger pier yesterday morning and broke his knee as he stepped off his boat right in front of us. We had been traveling together with 4 other boats for a few days now and he was on one of them. Long story, but that entire marina was unsafe.
Anyway, we are going to stay at Demopolis for a few days and get some rest.
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Old 12-03-2016, 08:59 PM   #4
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Tony, enjoy he trip. I am in Louisiana and plan on visiting with you as you go by.
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Old 12-03-2016, 09:17 PM   #5
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Blue, looking forward to finally meeting you and the Admiral. We will probably be passing through around end of Jan and beginning of February.
Seems like we sometimes travel under the worse conditions. maybe I ought to look at a Calendar once in a while and yellow highlight the warmer months.
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Old 12-03-2016, 09:29 PM   #6
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We made it to Demopolis last night. One man on his boat had a bad fall on the finger pier yesterday morning and broke his knee as he stepped off his boat right in front of us. We had been traveling together with 4 other boats for a few days now and he was on one of them. Long story, but that entire marina was unsafe.
Which marina is unsafe?
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Old 12-03-2016, 10:14 PM   #7
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Pirates Marina Cove in Pickinsville, Al.
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Old 12-03-2016, 10:20 PM   #8
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Pirates Marina Cove in Pickinsville, Al.
Bad reviews. Also, in November 2015 one boat was told "new docks will be in next month." They obviously didn't make it. Plus they've been known to mislead people as to depth.
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Old 12-03-2016, 10:46 PM   #9
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I think the depth was fine if you stayed in the channel.
As for the new docks, I was told that in 2014 and expected them to be there when I went in.
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Old 12-03-2016, 11:02 PM   #10
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I think the depth was fine if you stayed in the channel.
As for the new docks, I was told that in 2014 and expected them to be there when I went in.
2014, 2015, so they aren't waiting, just lying.
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Old 12-04-2016, 04:35 AM   #11
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There is a stack of iron work off to one side that looks like the framework for docks. It was there 3 years ago too. They just haven't gotten to it.
The owner is in his mid to late 70's and hasn't been well lately. Not an excuse, just a possible reason.
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Old 12-04-2016, 12:20 PM   #12
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There is a stack of iron work off to one side that looks like the framework for docks. It was there 3 years ago too. They just haven't gotten to it.
The owner is in his mid to late 70's and hasn't been well lately. Not an excuse, just a possible reason.
Regardless, not a place I'm planning on docking based on yours and other reviews.
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Old 12-04-2016, 12:36 PM   #13
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Good Plan

Lots of places to anchor all around there.
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Old 12-08-2016, 06:29 PM   #14
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Gettin' Closer

Tonite we are anchored pointing into the Alabama River where it joins the Mobile River. Tomorrow, late afternoon, we should be in the Mobile, Al. area staying at Turner Marine. Probably rest for a few days and then head to Gulfport, Ms. which is our first destination. Then probably stay there for around a month and then continue onward to Galveston Bay in Tx. Along the way, I hope to meet up with some of you guys.
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Old 12-10-2016, 08:51 PM   #15
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We arrived at Turner Marine yesterday afternoon about 3 PM. Mobile bay was choppy but not uncomfortable. Tomorrow evening, a friend from Gulfport, Ms will be driving over here and Mon. morning we will be driving to NW Alabama, about 5 1/2 hours away and pick up my van. Then Tues back to Turner marine and Thurs we will shoot for Biloxi, Ms. if weather permits.
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Old 12-17-2016, 06:56 PM   #16
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Yeaterday we left Turner marine in Mobile and headed toward Biloxi. Early morning, the wind was out of the North and helped us down Mobile bay for an hour or so. Then it shifted to out of the east. That put the 20+ MPH wind on our port beam. made for another uncomfortable ride. Once we hit the ICW and turned west, the following wind was great. Not too uncomfy, but much better than taking it on our bow.
We got to Point Cadet marina in Biloxi and fueled up. The dock master asked where we were headed and we told him LOng Beach Harbor, about 20 miles to the west, and intended to stay for a month visiting friends and relatives. He asked why we weren't staying in Biloxi and I told him that the 2 city marinas in Biloxi didn't give monthly rates unless you stay for 3 months. Man oh man, did he ever get pissed. He was not aware of that policy and his dock is a private business that he owns and leases from the marina, which is a large part the city of Biloxi. He was not aware of that policy and said that this could be costing him a lot of business. I agreed because last time I was there 3 years ago, we did not stay because of that policy. Turned out that we actually did stay in the area for almost 3 months, but not there. They lost a lot of money on our renting of cars, shopping, restaurants, etc.
Anyway, seems that Gulfport Ms. just initiated the same policy but a 2 month minimum. So we are now nestled in Long Beach Harbor for the month. Long Beach will give a monthly rate to transients. It is only about 2 or 3 miles west of Gulfport.
Anyway, we made the small jump here this morning. Bad weather had been forecasted, but didnt materialize. It was a beautiful day
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Old 12-19-2016, 01:00 AM   #17
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Were you able to get fuel at Bobby's Fish Camp? I'm planning to go up river next month and was wondering about fuel availability.
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Old 12-19-2016, 06:04 AM   #18
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Bobby's Fish Camp did have both Diesel and gas. Call ahead of time to make sure they have it when you get there and also that someone will be there to give it to you. I dont remember the exact cost of gasoline, but it was way more than the other places I refueled at it except for Pirates Marina Cove near Bevill Lock and dam.The gas was not labeled at the pump as ethanol free. The other boats that took diesel had a similar complaint about the price. I would suggest that if you carry enough fuel to make it to Demopolos, pass Bobby's up and anchor out along the way.
As a side note, be aware of any really heavy spring rains that may come early. They could float A LOT of logs and debris down the river. When we went up river 3 years ago, we were stranded in Gautier, Ms till mid-May because of all the rain they were having that year. If in doubt, drive to the Mobile Convention Center, It's on the Mobile River and you can see how much debris is coming down. Hopefully, you will catch it just right in your time frame.
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Old 12-19-2016, 07:03 AM   #19
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As a side note, be aware of any really heavy spring rains that may come early. They could float A LOT of logs and debris down the river. When we went up river 3 years ago, we were stranded in Gautier, Ms till mid-May because of all the rain they were having that year. If in doubt, drive to the Mobile Convention Center, It's on the Mobile River and you can see how much debris is coming down. Hopefully, you will catch it just right in your time frame.
We're planning to come upriver about the same time. Hopefully we'll leave Seabrook the first week of March and get to Mobile in early April. We'll have to keep a close eye on the spring rains.

What have you found the cell service to be like between Mobile and Joe Wheeler?

Paul
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Old 12-19-2016, 08:31 AM   #20
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.....we'll leave Seabrook the first week of March and get to Mobile in early April. ......
.... cell service between Mobile and Joe Wheeler? Paul
i am about to call Blue Dolphin Marina this morning. That will be our final destination for the year.
Cell service was very good most of the way. Of course, there are some small areas of no service, but overall - very good. We have Verizon and a Jet Pack for our own wi-fi. Most marinas along the way as well as most anchorages had cell service and Wi-Fi. The operative word being "most".
You will absolutely love Joe Wheeler. Also, if time permits, I would also suggest a few days or more in Chattanooga, Tn. - about 220 miles (I think) from Joe Wheeler. Also, as a gotta see, if possible, is Telico Lake (Little Tenn. River) about 350 miles past Joe Wheeler.

Three years ago, we waited several months in Ms. before we were able to safely ( the boat's safety, that is) go up the river due to logs. A year ago June, we helped a friend bring a new-to-him sailboat he bought in Mobile, up to Joe Wheeler. He was having someone in mobile check the river conditions for him. It wasn't until mid-may that they recommended he go up river. June worked out beter for him for time off from work. Once you get about 50 miles north of downtown Mobile, the trash and logs becomes noticably less.
I'm sure others here have different experiences.
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