Day 7 Cape Girardeau MO to Grand Rivers KY
We woke up in Cape Girardeau to our neighbor boats dingy motoring by with his dog heading for a shore landing to walk his dog. On his way back we chatted about our mutual mechanical troubles, He had bent his prop on debris coming down river the day before & he had some knowlege of the motors in our boat & their vibration troubles. We wished each other well & waved goodbye.
I started to search my iPhone for places to get fuel, it would be a long trip yet before we could get gas on the river, I found a truck stop on Interstate 55 only a mile away but it would take a lot of walking with cans & across a freeway bridge. We started toward the freeway & came across a fisherman with his son in a small john boat, We asked him about access to the freeway from the channel & he said it was a long walk through the swamp & almost imediately offered to take us for gas in his truck, he directed us to the launch & told us to nose up to the bank. he said he wasn't having much luck fishing that day & insisted that we ride to town rather than getting gas at the truck stop. Pat stayed behind to keep an eye on his boat, He was a very nice man & I don't want to sound cruel but to paint a good image for you he was someone you'd expect to find on the river & his 5 yr. old son was mud from head to toe & had his flip flops on the wrong feet. We returned from getting our first 4 cans of gas & I offered $20 if he would take us to refill again, i'll never forget his response " For $20.00 I Got All Day". so we went again & also stopped at a parts house to get a good funnel to help with feuling.
We left the diversion channel to start our longest day of travel so far after turning north east on the Ohio river at Cairo we discovered the river was very choppy but much cleaner than the Mississippi there were some very large barges on the Ohio but it was a lot wider, After about 50 miles we entered the Tennessee river. with no stops for lunch or dinner we ate sandwiches & snacks on board.
The Lock at Kentucky dam was our last obstacle before finding a marina & it was a big obstacle, we waited at least 4 hours starting after dark, our anchor wouldn't hold bottom, for a couple of hours we fought with that, then when we were called to get ready it was suddenly stuck in the rocks. we waited the last hour before entering tied to a huge grimey concrete silo for barges.ion The lock itself wasn't bad but it was around midnight when we got through & headed for the first marina we could find.
I guided Pat down a narrow rock lined entry to what I thought was Kentucky Dam Marina, it turned out to be a very unfreindly rock quarry with nothing but conveyers & barges. Our next stop was the entry to Lighthouse Marina, by this time we were exausted & my chart reading skills were a little rough, we were used to entering channels by drifting past & coming back up the center but it hadn't occured to me that we were traveling up steam now & that proved costly as we reached the entry a nasty crunch was heard as we wrecked a prop on the rocks, to make things a little worse a couple of drunk women on the point above began comenting on our navigation skills & the fact that the Lighthouse Marina was a SAILBOAT ONLY MARINA! we stayed at the first dock we could find for the night. to add insult to injury we were also out of BEER!