Thursday, July 8, 2010
Dakota's Adventure on the Black Warrior River
Last week we drove Grandson Dallas back to Maryland and returned with his 7 (nearly 8) year old sister, Dakota.
Today, Thursday July 8th, we hooked up the KnotSoFast and pulled it to Eagle Cove Marina just North of Tuscaloosa on the Black Warrior River. We got in the water about 10:45 this morning and after finding our assigned slip and looking around at the other boats at the marina, we headed North on the Black Warrior.
The wind was in our face, and with the sun playing peek-a-boo from behind the clouds, it was a pleasant trip. The first point of interest for me was at river mile 351.9, which is the approximate location of old Lock #14, where my great-grandfather James (Daddy Jim) Glover was a Lock Tender. His daughter Cherry Lottie grew up on the river here and met Melvin Thomas Smitherman who was working on the M&O Railroad which passed by the Lock. They married and my father was one of thier children. There was no sign of the old lock, nor any of the houses which were home to the workers here. It was fun to know that we were very close to the spot where my ancestors worked and grew up, though.
We rode upstream another hour or so, then headed back downstream. Now the wind was with us, and about the same speed as our boat - the net result was no wind. Just as we approached the marina again we had a nice shower which cooled things down a little.
Today was a very fun day on the Black Warrior River. My favorite part was seeing the big dead turtle! Also driving the tugboat was fun. I liked the rock cliffs - the holes in them looked like bear caves! I liked seeing the fish jumping. I tooted the horn at some people who were swimming. It rained hard on us.
The Warrior is different from the Alabama but no less beautiful. There are more pines and cedars and no cypress or spanish moss. I enjoyed seeing the site of old lock 14, where Tom's great-grandfather worked. It was nice to tell Dakota some of our family history. The only time it has been suffocatingly hot is when we showered in the shower house that had no windows! Daisy was a good sport about being locked in the boat while we drove to Tuscaloosa for supper. Right now the night sky is spectacular and the sounds of the crickets and frogs are just what I need to get my mind settled. The sky is flashing with distance lightening that makes it all the more wonderful.
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