Florence at MM 55, Illinois River Anchorage

It was such a brisk morning. We tried to sit on the bow with our morning coffee while we were waiting for another sailboat (Seafox) to pull up anchor so we could go through the LaGrange Lock together. I had on long pants and a sweatshirt and was so cold that I put my bath robe on too. We didn’t sit out long before we saw SeaFox headed our way.  So Bryce pulled up anchor and we headed towards the lock. The lock was only 5 miles from our anchorage. The LaGrange Lock is a 10 foot drop down. We are normally not here this early but we wanted to see how it was going through the lock early. This is the last lock on the Illinois River.

This is SeaFox 402 owner: Bill.  He is single handing the trip down the river.

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I can tell you this much; it is colder in the morning.  We ended up having to wait a bit because there was a Southbound tow and barge going first. So we putted around till it was our time. We entered the lock only to find out we had to hold a line. There were no floating Bollards. Bryce walked the line back and forth depending if the bow or stern was drifting out.  This kept the boat straight and tight to the wall.  My foot is still hurting so he is spoiling me.  I held a docking pole incase I was needed.

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Unfortunately SeaFox 402 is  single-handling his boat, and wasn’t able to keep it next to the wall.  Really I think he was too busy talking to Bryce he forgot to hang on to his line.  Bryce has this effect on people.  LOL He was going to have to float in the lock.

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Cruising out of the lock, I noticed the dam and its waterfalls.

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The blocks you see here use to be an old dam and lock on the starboard side of the boat once used before the LaGarange Lock.  Army Corp is putting some dredging around it.  Soon you won’t even know it was one there.

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We came upon the Army Corp of Engineers work area.  They were dragging a floating pipe across the whole river. We waited nearly 15 minutes.  Bryce drove the boat backwards to keep out of their way.  The boat you see here is SeaFox

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Bryce likes engines.  Here is a large dredge powered by a huge Caterpillar Engine. 

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This is the head Quarters and crew quarters for the crew doing the dredging. Taggatz is its name.

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More sandy beaches coming our-way.  Thank you ACE.

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Finally a call came through over the VHF. Telling us we that they opened it up on the starboard side by the green buoys. So we moseyed along our way.

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This tiny tow boat pushes the floating pipe line up and down the river.  This pipe attaches to the outlet of the dredger and carries sand and water to the shore creating my sandy beaches!!

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When we came upon the rest of the dredger Bryce saw this huge anchor!  It is a huge Danforth style anchor.  About 10 feet long. It’s worth a photo..,LOL

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A while later pushing 30 miles, we found an anchorage near MM 55 it is across from Florence Illinois.  Water depth 11.4 feet.

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Doesn’t this barge look like it’s doing a wheelie?  Looks like it’s being loaded with some type of grain.

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After the anchor was set we took a nap. Only for about an hour. I started to make Ramen Noodles. When we heard a boat come up next to us. Bryan, Jill, Anita and John. They are locals to the area and just came up to visit. We really enjoyed talking to them. They are a fun group of people. We love meeting the local people.

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I believe we have traveled over 900 miles on our journey so far.  http://trackmytour.com/35L17

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Thanks for Following our blog. Red rose

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