Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Topics not covered by another category.

Moderator: Bill Edmundson

Post Reply
User avatar
curtgard
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:54 pm
Location: Colfax Iowa

Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Sep 25, 2019 2:57 pm

Well, we are finally off on the trip of our lifetime and the major reason I spent four years of my life building this boat. The Great Loop is a water route that basically circles the Eastern half of the United Stated. A quick internet search can give you lots of details on the route so I won't repeat the info here. Our basic plan is to get to Florida by late Fall and spend the winter in Southern Florida, with possible trips to the Keys and/or the Bahamas. Next spring we will head up the East coast and get to Canada by early Summer and back home a year later. I will try to post updates and pictures every week or so as we progress on this epic adventure.

So on September 18th 2019, I hooked onto "Curt's Dream" and headed to Ottawa, Illinois and launched at Heritage Harbor marina on the Illinois River. We headed out at first light on the 19th to get through Starved Rock Lock. This was the last day we could get through this lock for two weeks as it will be closed for repairs. At the lock, there were 6 pleasure craft that rafted together in the lock and two tow boats in the lock for the lockage.
Tug boats in Starved Rock lock with us
Tug boats in Starved Rock lock with us
After locking through, we continued down the Illinois River where we stopped at Peoria for two nights. We got a rental car in Peoria and went back to Ottawa and got the van and empty trailer. We took the van/trailer back home and returned to Peoria with the rental car. The next morning we head on down the Illinois River where we stopped at a free dock in Havana Illinois.After Havana, the towns are few and far between but we did past this abandoned tower. I have no idea what it was used for so this is the question of the day, What is it?
abandoned tower
abandoned tower
Just before the Illinois River meets the Mississippi River, a car ferry is busy taking vehicles across the river.
ferry
ferry
Con't

User avatar
Bill Edmundson
Posts: 11669
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2005 6:45 am
Location: Birmingham, AL, USA
Contact:

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Bill Edmundson » Wed Sep 25, 2019 3:05 pm

Curt

Are you planning to come down the Tenn. Tom. or say in the Miss. ?

Bill
Mini -Tug, KH Tahoe 19 & Bartender 24 - There can be no miracle recoveries without first screwing up.
Tahoe 19 Build

User avatar
curtgard
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:54 pm
Location: Colfax Iowa

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Sep 25, 2019 3:21 pm

Just after the Illinois River and Mississippi River meet the scenery changes to high bluffs along the Mississippi
Bluffs North of St. Louis on the Mississippi River
Bluffs North of St. Louis on the Mississippi River
Also North of St Louis, the Missouri River empties in to the Mississippi River. Near this area, a statue of Our Lady of the Rivers overlooks the river. This shrine was erected in 1957 by a priest praying the nearby town would not be flooded and it was not. But this last Spring, after the heavy rains the statue was more in the middle of the river rather than at the edge.
Our Lady of the Rivers
Our Lady of the Rivers
After staying at the Alton Marina, four boats on the Great Loop left together for the trip past the Gateway Arch in downtown St. Louis. There is no place to dock at the arch so everybody took pictures of each other as we passed by the Arch.
Curt's Dream at the Gateway Arch
Curt's Dream at the Gateway Arch
Sorry, don't know why the picture is sideways

Con't

User avatar
curtgard
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:54 pm
Location: Colfax Iowa

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Sep 25, 2019 3:42 pm

We continued past St. Louis and on down the Mississippi to the Kaskaskia River where we turned up the Kaskaskia and went upstream about 10 miles to Evansville, Illinois and docked at a free dock at a bar/grill. This location is not far from where Ray and Vickie Macke live so they came down and we went out for supper. They also came back today and we went to lunch and Walmart for supplies. I was very thankful for their hospitality. We will stay at this free dock another night and then head back to the Mississippi River and on down to the Ohio River where we will head up the Ohio to the Tennessee River to continue on to Mobile Alabama in the coming weeks.
Docked at Evansville Illinois
Docked at Evansville Illinois
Curt

JimmY
Posts: 845
Joined: Sat Jul 30, 2016 11:08 am
Location: Brighton, MI

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by JimmY » Wed Sep 25, 2019 4:11 pm

Hi Curt,

Wishing you all the best on the trip of a life time. Looking forward to future updates.
-Jim
Nothing says poor craftsmanship like wrinkles in your duct tape!

User avatar
Ibrew2be
Posts: 131
Joined: Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:52 pm
Location: Cincinnati, OH

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Ibrew2be » Wed Sep 25, 2019 5:05 pm

Thanks for bringing us all along, Curt. Your travelogs have always been such a great read, and this one promises to carry on that fine tradition. Here's hoping you make many wonderful memories.

Barry
Barry Shantz

Imp built and launched. Thinking hard about Boat 2.0

Hercdrvr
Posts: 996
Joined: Mon May 11, 2015 12:52 pm
Location: McKinney TX

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Hercdrvr » Wed Sep 25, 2019 7:51 pm

Fabulous Curt, thank you for sharing your adventure.
Matt B

User avatar
DrBryanJ
Posts: 1016
Joined: Fri Jul 22, 2011 6:05 am
Location: Pompton Plains, NJ

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by DrBryanJ » Thu Sep 26, 2019 6:49 am

Curt, what an adventure you have embarked on. Will be looking forward to your updates.
Bryan

Building a malahini "Mona Lisa"

My wife said "If I build a boat, she's getting a divorce."

User avatar
kens
Posts: 4729
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2003 5:25 pm
Location: Coastal Georgia

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by kens » Thu Sep 26, 2019 6:56 pm

This is going to be a great thread. Lots of pics I hope.
I did spend a lot of time down in Florida in and around Indiantown, Fl, and Stuart, Fl.
If you happen to go across Lake Okeechobee , I would gladly meet you at Indiantown, get your supplies, and a some Great Tacos off the taco truck.
In a trawler, 1 day later, is Stuart, Fl. Again I would be happy to see you and re-visit the Tuna salad there. Ahi-Tuna (Asian salad). Good stuff !!!
The restaurant is on the water there. You could get a curb-service carry-out!

St. Augustine has the Winery you should not miss!

I am in Savannah, Ga. I can give you a ride anywhere around here. Maybe we could meet ours boats at the restaurant in Sunbury, or Tybee, or about anyplace.
Oak is over rated, everything about it takes extra time; then it warps, splits or checks !!! :roll:

User avatar
vupilot
Posts: 3481
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 7:36 am
Location: Indy
Contact:

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by vupilot » Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:35 am

Thanks for posting Curt, gonna be looking forward to your weekly updates!!

User avatar
curtgard
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:54 pm
Location: Colfax Iowa

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Sep 27, 2019 10:51 am

We are anchored for the next couple of days by Cape Girardeau, Mo. on a side canal of the Mississippi. Our next stop will be Paducah, Ky.

Bill: Yes we will be coming down the Tenn-Tom waterway.
Kens: We would love to meet up with you when we get to your area. Lets keep in touch.

Curt

User avatar
kens
Posts: 4729
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2003 5:25 pm
Location: Coastal Georgia

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by kens » Fri Sep 27, 2019 11:06 am

Hi,
When you get to the bottom of the Tenn-Tom, what is your route along the Gulf coast? Correct me if I am wrong, but the Gulf coast does not have the protected ICW such as Atlantic coast, correct?
Is the entire gulf section done on the outside?
Oak is over rated, everything about it takes extra time; then it warps, splits or checks !!! :roll:

User avatar
Bill Edmundson
Posts: 11669
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2005 6:45 am
Location: Birmingham, AL, USA
Contact:

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Bill Edmundson » Fri Sep 27, 2019 11:19 am

The ICW is protected from Mobile Bay to Apalachicola.

Bill
Mini -Tug, KH Tahoe 19 & Bartender 24 - There can be no miracle recoveries without first screwing up.
Tahoe 19 Build

TAB
Posts: 110
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:22 pm
Location: OR

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by TAB » Sat Sep 28, 2019 4:15 pm

That's awesome. One of those trips that you will have stories to tell for the rest of your life

User avatar
mrintense
Posts: 3382
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:22 am
Location: Austin, Texas
Contact:

Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by mrintense » Sun Sep 29, 2019 11:40 am

Very cool Curt. The loop is something I would have loved to do. I'm hoping to someday do a mini version on some local river.
Carl
a.k.a. Clipper

Crafting a classically styled Vera Cruise

Clipper's Vera Cruise Build

Post Reply

Return to “Miscellaneous”