WindigoIII leaves the Great Lakes . . .
Karin & Kevin’s
adventure has begun, but our life has been an adventure for years. . .
To bring everyone up
to speed – we bought a 37’ sailboat and have spent the last 4 years selling
& giving away all our possessions that wouldn’t fit on the boat. We thought
if we could rid ourselves of everything but the boat, we would head for the
southern climates down the Tenn.-Tom waterway, and on to Belize in Central
America as a starting point for the rest of the world. . . .
We sailed a long
season on Lakes Michigan, Huron & Superior in 1999. Then, for 19 months,
Windigo was in a building in Door County where we worked on its refit EVERY
It was a great
experience, doing ALL the work ourselves, but we were very glad to get it out
in the water. Windigo launched just before the 4th of July. We
invited my daughter Jessy and her new husband Javier to go on a weeklong
‘honeymoon’ cruise. The third night, a “clear gale” hit us with winds over 40
knots, accompanied by 8-10 foot seas. The honeymoon was over the next morning!
Ha (a positive side to the event was
that the 70# stainless steel “mooring” anchor I designed & built was
thoroughly tested, and performed flawlessly – and has ever since.)
We took on Kevin
Kelly, who biked with me & worked with me @ www.YachtWorks.net in Door
County [I built the website . . check it out!], as crew for the Hook Race.
Starting in Racine, WI and ‘hooking’ around Door County finishing in Sturgeon
Bay. We were a bit out-classed by the 60 ‘race’ boats, with our dinghy hanging
on the davits, our deck plant, and all our worldly possessions onboard [24,000
lbs.] We were hoping for huge wind; We got little to no wind, and were forced
to drop out and cut into the canal from the lakeside. We did get to see the
first three boats finish and we enjoyed the party Monday night; had we
continued to sail, we would have finished on Tuesday . . . hook race.JPG
We enjoyed several
weeks of sailing with friends in Sturgeon Bay, Sheboygan, Milwaukee, and
Waukegan. Especially enjoyable was the time with the Scheibel family children,
ages 4-10, who each had their nights aboard individually learning what it’s
like living on a sailboat. What a blast! Package delivery problems and bad
weather kept us in Waukegan to enjoy the Bales a few extra days, but we finally
got away to Chicago. After checking out the lock that we needed to transit to
enter the river system, we proceeded to anchor for the night so we’d be ready
to pass through downtown Chicago the next morning with the weekly flotilla.
I was a bit
indignant when the Chicago police boat M-1 pulled up and told us to move as we
were in a restricted area. I answered on my marine radio that I was sure this
was a permissible anchorage, for I have planned this trip for years and had the
chart right in my hand and . . .
The cops looked
blankly at each other then asked if we had been out to sea for some time. Why,
yes I replied. He said I should listen to the radio news. What a shock. Of
course they were protecting the water filtration plant we were next to on the
day after the plane crashes. Oh my.
We found refuge in
Burnham Harbor, and used the extra time the cancelled flotilla gave us finding
an inexpensive place to unstep our mast for the beginning of the inland
waterway trip. We joined the flotilla on the 15th of September and
entered the waterway.
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to access previous page from here or from photos.
lake michigan sunrise.JPG chicago
sunrise.JPG chicago approach.JPG chicago
dawn.JPG chicago enter harbor.JPG burnham
harbor mooring.JPG chicago skyline burnham.JPG chicago nighttime skyline
burnham.JPG blue moon 167'.JPG chicago @ night.JPG CHICAGO @
NIGHT2.JPG grant park fountain.JPG mastdown3.JPG runners on
opens.JPG michigan ave opens.JPG waiting
for columbus.JPG flotilla downtown.JPG heading under bridges
with mast down.JPG clearance under clark.JPG flotilla
moves under 3 bridges.JPG under the sears tower.JPG KL
goodbye chicago.JPG goodbye chicago.MPG
Now we are on the
rivers, with no schedule. I have 1 bike [Landigo]; one dinghy, a pedal-powered
catamaran [Pedigo]; and a sailboard [Boardigo]. We intend to stay ahead of the
weather, but are in no hurry. We use computers at libraries & schools to
access the Internet for our mail. We monitor VHF marine channel 16. Ha
Kevin & Karin
Formerly of the Great Lakes.
P.S. if anyone
wishes specific photos or explanations of references & pictures, I maintain
a large photographic history of our travels/boat projects/experiences.