First day’s trip to Afton, St Croix river
I got a stressful but enjoyable trip from St Paul to Pepin experience to start the shortened season. It was a multi-day event because it is about 70 to 80 miles from start to finish plus, I needed to take a detour up the St Croix River to Afton so I could use their Gin Pole/hoist to get my mast up for proper sailing. I’ve traveled the rivers from Pepin to Stillwater and back a few times but have never been from Prescott to St Paul via the Mississippi.
Overall, the Saturday trip to Afton was uneventful other than being a hot bunch of days, a working barge that was huge but because I was concerned about another barge, I didn’t see and was chastised properly by the barge captain, rightly so. I had to negotiate two locks, relearning how to navigate through them at peak “pleasure boat” season. No mast up yet so getting through the two bridges at Prescott was too easy, actually the bridges were open for other boat traffic anyhow. Long day, hot, a bit uneasy along the way watching to stay in the channel and not do anything dumb. Made the trip in one full day with enough time to get some food and then hop on a bike and ride back to Watergate Marina. I had promised to run a velodrome training session the next day, Sunday, at the Blaine track so I picked up my truck and drove home leaving the boat docked in Afton, not my best plan.
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