2023 Great Loop stats

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Jeff F

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Thought this might be of interest.

2023 Loop Completion Stats
Stats for 2023 wake crossings based on information submitted to AGLCA by Loopers.

Wake Crossings
Total Number of Wake Crossings: 249 Boats (a record year!)

Boats
Number of New Gold Loopers: 238
Number of New Platinum Loopers: 11

Boat Size
Average Size Boat: 40.3'
Smallest Boat: 24'
Largest Boat: 94'

Boat Size Percentages
6% of boats were under 30'
38% of boats were between 30' and 39'
47% of boats were between 40' and 49'
9% of boats were 50' and above

Most Popular Boat Makes
1. Mainship (32)
2. Carver (17)
3. Grand Banks (16)
4. (Tie) Ranger Tug (10)
4. (Tie) SeaRay (10)
6. Meridian (9)
7. (Tie) Monk (8)
7. (Tie) Nordic Tug (8)
9. Cruisers Yachts (7)
10. (Tie) Beneteau (6)
10. (Tie) DeFever (6)
10. (Tie) Kadey Krogen (6)
10. (Tie) Silverton (6)
 
I always find those annual stats very interesting, thanks. (Wonder if they track age -- of the Loopers, not the boats I mean. I'll have to dig. Not a young crowd on average as I recall, although now with the possibility of defraying expense with a YouTube log, I wonder if that's moved the needle on average age at all. I watch a few of them regularly, but maybe they're still a very small minority.)
 
I always find those annual stats very interesting, thanks. (Wonder if they track age -- of the Loopers, not the boats I mean. I'll have to dig. Not a young crowd on average as I recall, although now with the possibility of defraying expense with a YouTube log, I wonder if that's moved the needle on average age at all. I watch a few of them regularly, but maybe they're still a very small minority.)

I get the impression many are still older and often retired. But the ability to work from the boat while traveling has also helped to let some of the younger crowd make the trip without having to wait for retirement.
 
Doing the loop itself is still rarer than getting hit by lightening. I have done 3/4 of the loop. The only sections I have not done are the bottom of Lake Michigan from Saugatuck to Chicago, the Illinois River, The Middle Mississippi, Ohio and lower Tenn Tom.
We shove off for a multi year adventure in the spring of 2025.
I first encountered someone doing the loop 55 years ago. Since then I have only encountered a few people who were young. Off those, a few had larger boats and kids but most had faster smaller boats and were taking 6 months or so to do the loop or were school teachers doing multi summer runs.
The loop is a large commitment in time, money, work and uncertainty. This reality culls a whole bunch.
 
I did it solo last year. I am retired and it was a bucket list trip. 6200 miles 345 days and I would do it again in a heart beat.
 
Another reason some seasoned boaters don't do it is they just aren't as interested in parts of it as cruising other places.

I am amazed at how many do the loop with very little experience as one of their "first" real cruises.
 
Another reason some seasoned boaters don't do it is they just aren't as interested in parts of it as cruising other places....

I think you're right. I'm one of those -- our five year plan as soon as the boys are out of high school (gap year) is to ship the boat to Duluth and sail away, but just going across the top and down the eastern seaboard is more than enough to keep you busy and thrilled for a lifetime. Heck, for a while I fantasized about someday pulling our boat into my father's condo slip in Stuart (FL) as the final destination, but now I'm not sure we'll ever get that far. The Great Lakes, the canals, Trent Severn, the Hudson River, New England, Chesapeake Bay. I could spend an entire summer on Narragansett Bay alone. Coast of Maine. Coast of CT. The Loop is a cool concept, and having done long runs already I'm confident we could do it, but I could spend an entire glorious summer between Mystic and Old Saybrook. Not enough time in life.
 
You could spend an entire summer in the North Channel and Georgian Bay. We will never do the loop. With Grandkids, and as quickly as they grow up, my wife doesn't want to be gone for a year. Yes, I know we could fly home and visit or the families come to us, but I just don't think it's in the cards for us.
This year, hopefully, we are leaving Southern Lake Michigan, up through the Straits of Mackinaw, North Channel, Georgian Bay, Trent Severn Waterway, Thousand Islands and back.
 
I can't say we're in any rush to do the loop either. We've cruised some areas along it and will do more. We may do the loop someday, but realistically, there is lots of other cruising we'd probably rather do first. And lots that fits better with the time constraints life has for now, where we can't readily take off for many months on end.
 
7 months

We did the loop in 23/24. 7 months of underway time. Paused once for a month and another for 2 months.
Never felt rushed on a 6.5 knot boat, 37 ft.
One issue for people is start and end point. You really need to follow the warm weather so that in itself allows for downtime to be worked in.
We bracketed our loop with several months in the Bahamas on each end.
If you come through Chicago on or shortly after Labor Day you might need to get creative and slow dta lot once you get to the Gulf because you can't just continue up the East Coast, getS cold!
 
You could spend an entire summer in the North Channel and Georgian Bay...

Agree except I believe you could spend a lifetime in those waters and never get bored. IMO the NE section of the loop and side trips are the best. Ive talked to many loopers that either return or store their boat in the area and do multi year mini-loops to really see the possible sights.
A nice advantage is early pur hase of Canadian Locking & Mooring Passes are reduced 5-10% up until end of Mar and they are good for Rideau, Trent-Severn and Richelieu Canals providing lots of area to explore.
 
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Another reason some seasoned boaters don't do it is they just aren't as interested in parts of it as cruising other places.

I am amazed at how many do the loop with very little experience as one of their "first" real cruises.

I resemble this remark. We bought a boat and finished the loop in a little over a year. It was a great year.

Mike
 

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