Thursday, 11 August 2016


Day 28 - Chicago to Cal-Sac to Joliet ( 57 miles)

On this second leg of our Great Loop we are taking the Calumet River to Cal-Sag Channel and Sanitary Ship Canal.  We left Chicago on Tuesday, August 9, 2016 at 8:00 am and arrived at Calumut Harbor entrance at 8:30 am.  The first bridge was open.  The second bridge was under construction.  We were informed that there would be a two hour wait.  We we fortunate however that a barge came northbound after 30 minutes and one side of the bridge was opened.  We got thru.  We are now in the Cal-Sac Canal.  We encountered one large tug going northbound.  We stood off to let them pass.  At 1:35 pm we arrived at mile 300.5 and the famous Aitchison Topeka and Santa Fe Rail Road Bridge with the lowest clearance along the Great Loop Trio of 19.7” and does not open.  We slowed to a near deep stop at we went under.  I was holding my breathe as we went under - SAFELY!!! Now I can breathe again.  At 2:00 we arrived at the Electric Barrier which is designed to prevent and slow down the spread of invasive fish species through the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal into Lake Michigan.  They were doing maintenance on  the barrier.  We had to tie up with two other boats and wait until 4:30.  Our next encounter was Lockport Lock and Dam.  We arrived and only had to wait a few minutes to begin our descend of 40 feet, the largest descend in the Illinois Waterway.  We finally arrived at Joliet Bicentennial Park where there was free tie-up and power at 6:15 pm.  It was a long day to traverse 57 miles and go under 47 bridges.

Entrance to the Calumet River to Cal-Sag Cannel & Sanitary Ship Canal
THE BRIDGE - The lowest fixed bridge (19.7') along the Great Loop

A SEPA station which pumps water from a stream over waterfalls to aerate it. 

A deserted marina with a sunken boat

The first large tug boat which passed us

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