We woke up to a beautiful but very windy morning in north Peoria.

The mechanic came come over and checked out our bow thruster situation.

We lost it, if you remember, back in the Starved Rock Lock.

We could still hear the motor running but nothing was happening.

He gave us the bad news that we would have to get the boat hauled out to get it fixed.

UGH!

Sam is a very skilled boat operator now and getting better all the time but docking and locking are much easier with a bow thruster.

I can tell you that I scream more now that we don’t have it.

Leaving Peoria

When we left Peoria we knew it was going to be a long day.

We needed to make our way south and find a mechanic to haul out our boat and fix it.

Sam got us out of the slip in the crazy wind, into the narrow passageway and by a metal post that is leaning over for no apparent reason.

So, off we go with the intention of anchoring somewhere.

Sights Along the Way

I continue to be amazed by the sights on the river.

The bridges are incredible.

So many designs.

Functional yet artistic.

The Lock is Closed!

Just as we get going, we find out that the lock is closed.

The lockmaster said to drive over the dam side instead of going through the lock.

OH WOW!

Is that even possible?

Well, he’s the boss.

So we drive over the dam side with no drama.

We could see the lock on the left and drove over on the right.

Who knew?

Smokestack Obsession

We were rolling right along when I spotted these.

I became so obsessed with the red and white striped smokestacks.

I took a lot of pictures and shot a lot of videos.

I just couldn’t get enough.

Really incredible.

In an area of brown and black industrial buildings and equipment, these smokestacks seemed to add a little cheer.

I like that.

Illinois River

The river was calm in some places.

It was so relaxing we almost forgot about the many barges that we have faced today.

The river is also very welcoming to tourists.

Anchor Alternative

As we were going down the river, we came to the first option where we were going to anchor and there was a boat right in the middle of it.

The area didn’t seem like it would accommodate two more boats so we pressed on.

Sam started searching Skipper Bob and the Loopers Companion Guide for other possibilities.

He found Logsdon Tug Service.

They let boats tie up to tugs and equipment and charge $1 per foot.

It is definitely a “no-frills” situation.

This was the most unique docking situation that we have been in.

Of course, there was no power and it was hot.

Really hot.

But I sucked it up and went along with the decision.

There were four looper boats tied to the docks.

Weird right?

We did walk over to the River Port Restaurant and Lounge and had a nice dinner with some other loopers.

Beautiful Ending

We ended up traveling 80 miles to get to Beardstown and were rewarded with one of the most beautiful sunsets we have seen.

I was just as obsessed with the sunset as I was with the smokestacks earlier in the day.

But can you blame me?

Our Thoughts