South on the Tenn-Tom

Early yesterday morning we left Aqua Yacht Harbor and headed South into the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway that locals call the “Tenn-Tom.” Three locks and 55+ miles later, we arrived at Midway Marina in Fulton, Mississippi. As shown in the screen shot below from Nebo Tracker (our voyage tracking device), our home for the night is on a stretch of the Tenn-Tom with a lock to the North and another lock to the South.

R&R at Mile 394 on the Tenn-Tom

The Tenn-Tom is a 234 mile man-made waterway, with canals, locks and dams, connecting the Tennessee River in the North with the Tombigbee River in the South, intending to create a second commercial route (in addition to the Mississippi River) for river barges carrying commodities between the Midwest and the Gulf of Mexico. Started by President Richard Nixon in 1972, it was completed in 1984 at a cost of almost $2 billion. Almost all Loopers prefer the Tenn-Tom over the lower Mississippi.

Fun fact: The Tenn-Tom was the largest earth moving project in history, requiring the excavation of almost one-third more soil than the Panama Canal.

Lafayette friends Alan and Marti joined us today in Fulton, MS for a few days of travel along the Tenn-Tom. We and a group of seven other boats plan to leave the Midway Marina at first light tomorrow and travel through four Tenn-Tom locks to Columbus, MS.