Learning the Locks

7 Jun

We were invited to ‘Locking School’. Yep, Gregg and Carol decided they needed a refresher course in transiting the locks and invited us to attend… so we did!

I’ve got to say, taking a ‘pleasure boat’ through the American locks is not as easy as it sounds. First of all, we are the last priority; which means that any commercial boat gets to go through before us. If fact, we had to wait for over 2 hours going west through the Pickwick Lock, then over 4 hours trying to return east. But we certainly learned a lot!

The barge always gets to go first!

The barge always gets to go first!

During the first ‘’go” we were told to ‘’raft” against another pleasure boat…so we did. The crew of ‘Lady Nancy’ were a traveling family. They had just bought ‘Lady Nancy’ and were taking her north to work on her…the most amazing part was that one of the crewmembers was 90 years old! Yep, Granddad had always wanted to boat on the rivers, so his son had arranged for this adventure. Granddad had been doing PT (he was a retired army grunt) for the past year to prepare for the voyage – you go Granddad!

On the second trip through the locks, we had to position ourselves right against the lock wall. The Skipper (Gregg) drove the boat up against the lock wall (which is all grungy and covered with dirt and mold and stuff) and the crew (that would be Carol) threw a line over a floating bollard that raises and lowers with the water in the lock. It’s all rather exciting!

Carol at the lines

Anyway, Boyd and I got to watch Gregg and Carol accomplish this nautical feat and learned a whole bunch. I think Boyd and I need to practice our boat maneuvering before attempting to brave the locks by ourselves.

locks

8 Responses to “Learning the Locks”

  1. Barbie Robinson June 8, 2014 at 01:17 #

    Yes fascinating stuff! I watched a barge go through a lock in Paris! 4 HOURS to wait though would make me cranky!! Lol xoxoxo

  2. Chris June 8, 2014 at 08:04 #

    So departure time is getting close? Do you have a planned date of departure?

    • Mrs Bushranger June 8, 2014 at 08:57 #

      I think we’re going to wander around the Tennessee rivers until the beginning of November, then pop into the Gulf to start the loop…fingers crossed…

      • Chris June 8, 2014 at 18:43 #

        Remember you need to stop at Daufuskie!

      • Mrs Bushranger June 8, 2014 at 21:21 #

        no worries…we’ll get there!

  3. Gregg Turner June 8, 2014 at 17:57 #

    Think you gave us too much credit. Thanks for coming along!

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