October 27 – 28
The seven boats in the Sumter anchorage waited for a barge to finish locking up, and were joined by the other four boats that had stayed further upriver before everyone headed into Howell Heflin Lock – 5 miles downriver.
Once again, we travelled miles of river, but the landscape in this area of Alabama is dramtically different from other parts of the Tenn-Tom.
Leaving the Heflin lock.
The white cliffs at Epes AL were the real show of the day – this is not a view that many people get a chance to see. The cliffs are chalk white, and a startling contrast to the river and surrounding foliage.
Even the slightest hint of autumn add drama to the cliffs.
A closer view – with the effects of erosion clearly visible.
We reached Demopolis in early afternoon, and soon queued up at the Yacht Basin for fuel and pump-out. The Basin also serves the tug traffic travelling this section of the Tenn-Tom. Their river front ‘dock’ space is a set of mooring cells specifically built to accommodate the tows – A-frame moorings with 15 feet of depth. The crews not only fuel up here, but provision and perform crew changes. The tows may take on 30 to 50 thousand gallons of fuel at a single stop.
After leaving the Basin, we headed for the Marina – Anna Marie took terrific care of everyone! She arranged for a van to take us into town for dinner, where we enjoyed a nice meal with Pat, Pete, Kathy and Rich. After we returned, we all gathered to celebrate CWay‘s wake crossing.
The next day, Anna Marie arranged for a van to Walmart, so that we could provision and prepare for the next phase of our journey – the Black Warrior-Tombigbee , Mobile River, Mobile Bay, and Dog River. We’d be anchoring for several days in a row.
Mileage Today: 45.9 nautical
Trip Duration: 5.0 hours (moving time)
Loop Miles: 4367.4 miles
Estimated Loop Completion: 80.9%
Segments Completed: Okeechobee Waterway, Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Chesapeake Bay, Delaware Bay, North Atlantic Ocean, Hudson River, Erie Canal, Oswego Canal, Lake Ontario, Trent Severn Waterway, Georgian Bay, North Channel, Lake Michigan, Illinois River, Mississippi River, Ohio River, Tennessee River