|The Muddy Mississippi|
An Illinois high security prison, don't pick up swimmers we are told.
Note the rock walls that were constructed into the river perpendicular to the flow, called wing dams. Don't try to pass over them. We stayed on the "sailing line" to avoid these. if the water was up a foot or so you would not see them but look out. The purpose is to speed the flow of the water to keep the silt from dropping out and shoaling up the channel.
Watching out for towboats keeps us on our toes. We have not seen nor will we see any pleasure craft on the 212 miles of the Mississippi.
Oh Oh, two tows coming up river in a bend. I call them on the radio and they say to stay on the one whistle which means port to port passing. They thank me for the call.
Then the larger one starts passing the small one reducing the available channel. I call them again, "Should I hold back here, I ask" "No Captain keep her coming and thread the needle" I am told. So between them I pass. Huge rollers come off their sterns as they push their loads up river against the current.
|Little River Diversion Channel|
|The Mississippi in the background|