The Great Loop

Note: Our Great Loop Blog started with the April 7, 2016 entry “The List” and ended with the August 23, 2017 entry “Postscript and Prolog”.

America’s Great Loop is a 6,000 to 7,000 mile route encompassing the eastern 1/3 of the United States and, optionally portions of the Bahamas and Canada.  It is a popular route with an established support system. Most people do the loop in a counterclockwise direction to take advantage of the currents of the inland rivers. Our boat averages 5-6 mph, so every bit helps! The graphic below shows some of the points of interest along the route.

We plan to leave Hudson, Wisconsin on about August 1, traveling down the St. Croix, Mississippi, Ohio and Tennessee-Tombigbee rivers, reaching Mobile, Alabama about November 1.  Optional side-trips include Nashville via the Cumberland and Chattanooga via the Tennessee.  Rounding the south tip of Florida, we plan to sail to the Bahamas and spend the winter.  In spring we will follow the warm weather north to New York City, arriving in June.  Taking the Hudson River through NYC brings us to the Erie Canal and on to Lake Ontario.  An alternate route goes through Lake Champlain, past Montreal and Ottawa, then to Lake Ontario.  The Trent-Severn waterway through Ontario, Canada brings us to the north shore of Lake Huron.  From there we sail through Sault Saint Marie and into Lake Superior.  Then we sail west through Lake Superior back to Bayfield, Wisconsin, arriving in Fall of 2017.  Most Loopers complete the circle by going south through Lake Michigan and entering the Illinois River at Chicago.