This morning we refueled at our overnight dock near Joliet and headed North. Entering the Chicago area requires travel along a narrow channel created years ago when the direction of the Illinois River was changed to create a navigable waterway from Lake Michigan to New Orleans.
We passed through three locks and countless Bascule drawbridges, railroad lift bridges, and fixed bridges, and turned right into the Chicago Ship and Sanitary Canal toward our destination of Hammond. Many miles of slow-no-wake zones as we passed shuttered factories, mountains of coal, fertilizer and other goods, parked barges, and small barge-mover tugs.
After a week of travel from Hendersonville TN through the high and muddy Cumberland, Ohio, Mississippi, Illinois, and Calumet rivers, Danny and I laughed and high-fived when we reached the clear waters of Lake Michigan late afternoon today! We passed under the Chicago Skyway and exited the Calumet River near Whiting and met Rhonda and our friends Mark and Mary Lake at slip X-12 in the Hammond Marina, with the Chicago skyline in the distant West.
Danny Ubered to a hotel near O’Hare to get home a day early to enjoy Memorial Day with his wife. Mark Lake and I plan to take the boat across Lake Michigan tomorrow to meet Rhonda and Mary in Holland.
Another good day!