Monday, November 12, 2012

Lake Charles to Morgan City, LA

First of all, someone needs to tell south LA marinas about WIFI - THERE IS NONE.  I've got several days worth to post and you do what you have to do.  We're in Morgan City with a delay for weather so I hiked 12 blocks to McDonalds but I prefer comfort when I can get it so I asked the desk clerk at the Hampton Inn next door to McDonalds if I could sit in their lobby and use theirs.  She was very nice and quite accommodating.  As you read boat travelers' blogs and accounts of their travels, one thing you hear over and over again - people in general are wonderful and very interested in helping each other.  Definitely true for the Hampton Inn in Morgan City!  So, the next time we're car traveling, we'll find us a Hampton and return the favor.

Let's see, our last post was at Lake Charles using the WIFI of one of the full-time tenants there.  The mechanic came and checked out OPUS One's generator and did not have the parts to fix it.  So, we had to make some decisions.  Rhonda and I decided to press ahead because of our slow speed, to get moving ahead of weather that could potentially delay us for days.  Clint and Linda decided to rent a car and go home for a few days while parts were ordered.  They will catch up with us in the days ahead and meet the mechanic again in New Orleans.  

All the tankers that were missing the day before seemed to be back in force.  I always enjoy noting their countries of origin, in this case Panama, Istanbul, Nassau, and others.

Leaving Lake Charles to return to the GIWW, you have to go through the Calcasieu locks.  We timed it perfectly and the lockmaster asked one of the barge captains if he minded if we snuck through ahead of him.   He consented.  In some of the locks you have to catch a line while the gates open and close.  In this case we were allowed to just drift through.

You see many barges on the GIWW and this one below was no different except that he asked if we would take some pictures of his tow and email them to him.  He said his kids would get a kick out of it.  So, we were happy to accommodate him - the "El Paso" from Wilmington, DE.

I spend a lot of time every day just taking in the scenery from my spot up front at the bow pulpit.  Most of the time it's just us and the view.

But every now and then there is some activity.  In this case, two westbound tows and some fishermen in their john boat.  We saw a large group of these fishermen on this stretch and it looked like a good occasion for filming an episode of Swamp Thing.

We anchored out for the night at a really beautiful spot on the Mermentau River.  You could put a ton of boats in this anchorage but it was just me, Rhonda, cypress trees, the alligators, and the owls for the night.  I'll let the pics speak for themselves.

We left the Mermentau anchorage for Shell Morgan Landing, another gorgeous day.  Occasionally and in the middle of nowhere, you'll find some homes along the waterway, this one with some beautiful live oaks.

And as I mentioned previously, Rhonda likes cows.  So, here you are (and there will be more).

Shell Morgan is a large and mostly commercial fuel stop but they do a good job of accommodating recreational boats also.  Here's HMR docked for the night.  Another couple docked behind us later in the evening, traveling from Maine to Corpus Christi.  They came over and visited on the boat for about an hour and we've communicated a couple of times since.  They had made it to our home marina in Galveston, Harborwalk.

The next leg was to Morgan City, LA.  This was interesting - a cable ferry connecting farmland on both sides of the waterway.

A serious work barge with a large crane.

And our arrival in to Morgan City.  I'll dedicate the next section to the town.

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