Day 33,34 &35 – Running down the Illinois River

Oct 16 2019.

After our day of rest and recuperation we were keen to continue further South.  Armed with the knowledge obtained yesterday at “Looper School” with Jeremy at Heritage Harbour Marina, we set out at first light destined for an anchorage along the way. We lost one of our travelling companions in Group 1.5 when Bella Donna had mechanical issues and couldn’t leave the dock. It was very cold and we were operating wearing sweaters and our big coats. We decided it was going to be a cold night on the hook so we opted to go to the Ivy Club marina where we could have power to run the electric heaters.  With only the Starved Rock lock to negotiate and a strong current to give us a speed boost  we felt we could make the distance. We only had a short wait at the Starved Rock Lock. The lockmaster put us through between to smaller 3 barge tows going up bound. So we waited for one to leave the lock and when they “turned” the lock for the next up buond barge we got to ride the empty lock down.  The only wrinkle was that we had to squeeze out of the lock between the wall and the next upbound barge. Knot Diggin and Nautoncall made it through but the Two Loons with their 21′ beam had a tight squeeze. Captain Chris made it look easy.

We covered the rest of the way to Peoria with no issues. It was a pleasure to have the waterway open up a bit giving us room to meet any tows we came across easily.
After a 65NM day we arrived at the IVY club.

The IVY club is a vibrant “Boat Club” run by it’s members who are passionate about their club and very welcoming. We had to check in at the bar and ended up meeting most of the members that were there for drinks and dinner. The bartender didn’t know how to use a shot glass and free poured some drinks that were definitely darker than the table. Maybe that’s why it’s such a happy club.

Oct 17th was another early start.

Photo Credit: Theresa Scott
A friend from home captured us coming through Peoria during morning rush hour. Nice catch Theresa, Thank You again.

It was a chilly morning but if you dress properly.
Another 72NM day brought us to Beardstown Ill. where we anchored behind Bar Island for the night. It was a little disappointing as there is no Bar on Bar Island, false advertising…
We settled in for a quiet night on the hook.

Oct 18 and another 65NM under our keel brought us to Diamond where it had warmed up enough to have a few decktails while we planned our next days adventure where we would finally meet the mighty Mississippi.

Don McCulloch
1 Comment
  • Barry White
    Posted at 21:39h, 20 December Reply

    Awesome pics!!!

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