Today was going to be an easy run with no locks to wait for. We pulled our anchors and were under way by 0650 hrs. We overtook one tow and vhf 13 communications arranged for a pass on the starboard side of the two. Since it was another 5 x 3 barge arrangement it took quite awhile to make the pass. Soon after completing the pass we came upon a dredging operation that was spread out for about 1.5 miles.
We passed a couple more oncoming tows by riding the 9’ contour line on the chart plotter while the tow used up most of the marked channel. When in close quarters during one of these passing situations the chart plotter said “DSM signal lost” and once again we were without a depth sounder.
We anchored behind Bar Island by using the contour lines on the chart for relative depth. After anchoring I checked the depth with the hand held depth sounder we have for use in the dinghy and found that we were in 9-10’ of water.
It was another warm day and when we first anchored there was not much wind so it was hot in the cabin and in the cockpit. Soon after getting settled Reunion, Blue Haven, Gemini, Manana and Harmony were coming down the river. We contacted them via vhf and they said the LaGrange Lock was going to be open when they got there and asked if we wanted to join them since there shouldn’t be any wait time. We discussed it with the Namaste crew and decided we would stay put and take our chances.
I called Quality Marine Electronics back Zeeland, Michigan about the DSM signal being lost and Goran told me to turn the power off to the unit and then turn it back on to reboot it. I did and it worked! Depth readings again! Hallelujah!
The clouds looked very ominous in the north west so I checked the weather report to find that there was a tornado watch out for the area just to the north east of our position. Soon after we heard the wind approaching from far away and when it finally reached us it was blowing 15 mph with much higher gusts. I kept checking our position relative to the shore and the anchor was holding very well. In about 45 minutes the wind died down and what rain there had been stopped. The storm had past us to the northeast.
We had happy hour with the Namaste crew aboard Sea To See and then it was time for dinner, reading and bed.