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Old 10-10-2018, 20:49   #31
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

Originally Posted by Zarih View Post
I've read max draught 5', preferable 4'

For what? That's the official rule for the Rideau canal. It's an optional side trip, and other portions of the Great Loop are more tolerant of draft. The question we were discussing was regarding the reaches from Chicago to the Gulf.
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Old 11-10-2018, 02:54   #32
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

According to books about the ICW. Sorry for the input. Didn't mean to offend.
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Old 15-10-2018, 10:51   #33
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

Does anyone know the title of the Bruce Bingham book referenced here earlier? Is it "The Sailor's Sketchbook," or some other? Thanks!!
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Old 15-10-2018, 12:08   #34
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

Yep, "The Sailor's Sketchbook" by Bruce Bingham.
Pg 32-36 if you are looing for the mast lowering system.
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Old 16-10-2018, 06:01   #35
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

I second the earlier suggestion of going to the Great Loop website and joining the AGLCA. You will w/o a doubt, find all the information you could possibly need for doing the Loop. Enjoy.
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Old 16-10-2018, 21:09   #36
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

I found out the hard way about lateral movement of the mast when raising or lowering, popped my mast step off. Not too bad of a fix but I was very fortunate that the aluminum step bracket stayed aboard. I now use a stowable hinged bipod system with a V roller that the mast sits in, an aluminum loop attatched to a 6x block and tackle around the mast. Block and tackle makes raising and lowering soooo easy a child could do it. I didn't do a great job of explaining the system but if you care to message me I'll send some photos
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Old 21-10-2018, 13:02   #37
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Re: Great Loop Height Restrictions

Originally Posted by Gary Gramlich View Post
Hello Cruisers
My name is Gary
I'm wanting to purchase a sailing vessel that's located the Chicago Ill.
My plains are to bring her down the The Great Loop to the Gulf Of Mexico.
My concern is that she has a deep draft keel of 6 feet.
I'm hoping for guidance from those with experience on the TGL.
Will the 6' draft be a deal breaker?
Thank You for the help
IMHO You might as well drop your mast before hitting the lower Mississippi or the Tenn-Tom waterway. There is simply too little room to maneuver under canvas. The Miss is quite wide but can shoal very quickly outside of the marked channel and there are many submerged jetties. And, MOST IMPORTANTLY, it is thick with barges! I just finished a delivery from Little Rock, AR, to Biloxi, MS and the "Sippy" was thick with tows pushing rafts of 6 wide and 7 deep and often in groups of two or three one right behind the other. You need all the maneuverability you can get to avoid the barges and then attack the 4-6' wakes that the loaded upbound ones make. And there is only one marina (Greenville, MS) between Cape Girardeau, MO and New Orleans but many good anchorages.

If you do decide on the Sippy, I highly recommend taking the Old River Lock below Natchez, MS, (at LMR mile 304) over to the Atchafalaya River (7 miles), south to Morgan City, LA, (115 miles) then east on the GIWW to NOLA (95 miles). The distance via this route is almost exactly the same as staying on the Sippy (201 mi) and has the advantage of avoiding much of the barge traffic and the huge ocean freighters below Baton Rouge. A 6' draft will not cause you any problems and, although the first marina on the Atchafalaya is at Morgan City, there are many good anchorages along the way. Many of these are marked on Active Captain. However, if you choose this route, YOU MUST take down your mast as there are several 45' fixed bridges.

If you choose the Tenn-Tom route, you may not need to drop the mast but, because of the limited maneuverability, you will have very little opportunity to use your sails. The lowest bridges are 52' and a 6' draft will not be a problem. There many marinas on the T-T and a couple on the Tombigbee - The Demopolis Yacht Basin and Bobby's Fish Camp, but the latter is a rip-off. I did this route northbound from Mobile in 2015 in my 44' Lancer (6' draft) with a 35' Catalina lashed alongside and had no problems with depth or anchorages.

Good Luck
Gary Matthews
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