25 OCT – 31 OCT 2001


Tennessee River


The chronological story left off last time with a stormy weather approaching:


We stayed two days in the Leatherwood Creek. I was willing to move in order to avoid bad weather - but I had to time this by myself, ‘cause the closest weather report available was in Paducah, 35 miles to the north. With the center of the system in northern Illinois, I took the chance. I saw a break between the fronts and ducked south about 30nm. We anchored behind a huge bluff in a tiny bay off the channel about 170’ wide. At quarter to seven, the storm passed us with giant angry clouds & lightning, fierce winds whipped the trees above us on the bluff, and rain poured down. We sat in our little cove, and in an hour it was over. The rest of the night was so quiet, we thought we were ashore. [The passing of the front cleared the weather for weeks & weeks!]


After that, we stayed in Clifton, TN to pick up our mail. Then stayed in Savannah, TN for its services & hospitality. Then we found an “abandoned” dock at the entrance of Pickwick Landing State Park Marina that served the old lodge. The marina manager said, “Nobody ever wanted to stay there before, but if y’all want to, go ahead.” We found a similar arrangement at Cotton Springs in Bay Springs Lake just above Jamie Whitten Lock on the Tenn-Tom Waterway, which was our next stop. It’s getting so that we dock at nicer locations with better access than the costly marinas on a regular basis. This allows us to use restroom & shower facilities ashore and ride our bikes for groceries, libraries, or sightseeing/exercise anytime with no hassles.


So here’s what we saw:


storm comin' over the mountain.jpg - it was beautiful as it crossed the first quarter of the moon.


Pedigo & KJ in Clifton Marina.jpg - the water here was only 2 feet deep [they reduce the water levels of all the pools above the dams in the winter to prepare for spring rains] so we stayed in . . .


. . . Windigo in VERY small bay [Clifton].jpg - just outside the marina entrance. There was another bass tournament while we were there, just as in Paducah. 200 fishing boats came zooming out at dawn on Saturday! The day we left, we were fogged in for a while in the morning (steaming in the fog.MPG).


Pedigo & KJ in the Roach Creek [Clifton].jpg - there was this neat tunnel under the highway at Clifton.


Pedigo with bikes.jpg - detail of how we get our bikes ashore when we anchor. (Pedigo, Windigo & the barge.MPG)


lock whirlpool.jpg - if you don’t tie your vessel well in these locks, the turbulence will cause you grief, and falling overboard is more dangerous than whitewater canoeing! (pickwick locks.jpg)


TN RVR museum.jpg - very nice collection of local artifacts, many concerning the civil war. There’s a huge monument to an important battlefield just up the river [Shiloh]. I could never figure why there seems to be much more attention to the Civil War in the south than the north; giant monuments to the losers? That whole thing was very nasty, and once we resolved it & learned from the experience why can’t we could put it behind us and make a great future, eh? Here ends today’s editorial.


Windigo @ old pickwick dock.jpg - this was our last stop before entering the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway.


K&K @ pickwick resort.jpg - a very nice state park by a lock with a resort, marina, (pickwick marina.jpg & Windigo on old pickwick dock.jpg) and . . .


the dam post office.jpg - . . . it’s own dam post office.


light-house & river porch.jpg - some very nice houses along the water. This area reminded me of canoeing through Wisconsin Dells.


One more thing I saw that I did not include a picture of- the 3 state lookout we sailed across [Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi]. A photograph of some water in Pickwick Lake seemed like wasted bandwidth. BUT if you have a multi-state fetish, I will send it along 3-state junction, Pickwick.jpg !


Sorry, no navigational problems to report this time. No engine room explosions. No animal attacks or renegade towboat captains.


Just hospitable southern towns, beautiful scenery under fair skies.

No boredom yet, but it sure is peaceful here.


KL & KJ Hughes

S/V WindigoIII

Two more states ‘til the Gulf . . .