Archive for June, 2010


Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Another cool night, only 68 degrees.  The river is down a little from last night but still high, still a pretty good current.  We started our cruise at 7:50 tonight, puppies all excited!  Jerry put his dock in today and Celeste finished her up.  Saw the kid from the big yellow house, he said he going to cut branches off the tree hanging in the water by the Hopkins Street bridge.  Dropped the coon food on Preston and rounded the island just in time to see another v-bottom. We saw lots of wood duck families and groups from the 281 bridge all the past the ski course!  I’ve never seen so many in one night on our river. There was even a group jump around from log to log in a wood jam eating.  Saw a deer along the fence by the three big pipes too.  The gang way at the damp is once again a float and no longer covered by water…no wet shoes, just wet dogs from swimming! Just as we headed home, we saw a deer across from the ski club standing on the river bank eating leaves!  Lots of ducks on the ways home too.  When we came up to the GM water treatment, a mother wood duck was teaching her young to find food when we looked up a little higher and saw a small deer on the hill.  When we got back to our food drop, a little raccoon was already eating.  Soon another, a squabble and run off then it came back from different direction. Another squabble and then the sharing began. A third one came and was chased off but it came back with a friend a little while later!  On the way home, just past Preston, we saw remains of the tree…he did cut some off!  Looks good now!  Didn’t get home til 10, Eric there waiting.


Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

The river is up and the gang-way is straight out.  We all left at 7:55, current is strong.  Just as we passed Riverside Park, we saw 18 canoes from the Boy Scout camp.  Then just before reaching the RR bridge, a mother mallard and her 5 babies crossed in front of the boat!  With the current so strong, it has shifted the tree and debris so it was blocking half our passage path under the clear area to cross under the Holgate bridge making it tricky with the tree that fell in just on the other side of the opening!  Celeste has someone working on her dock while she is working on garden! We saw a boat out skiing so we made some wake for their enjoyment and our fun!  We dropped our food for the coons.  We saw 3 v-bottom boats under the 281 bridge and ski-doo boat by the dam entrance.  Mike walked the puppies a while and then we started home.  Saw a few heron and king fishers and the acrobatics of the cedar wax wing and swallows and martins.  There were some duck along the shore which we watched while the sun set.  Beautiful in all blues, purples, and pinks!  Arriving a little early at our food drop, we waited a little while and before long a tiny raccoon appeared for dinner.  Tonight it was shy and wouldn’t let us watch long.  It was a cool ride home, 68 degrees.  Arrive home at 9:50.


Monday, June 28th, 2010

I took the battery back today, they tested it and then replaced it for free.  Mike out it in this afternoon.  So, at 7:25 we headed for the dam.  Saw 2 boats, one of them Jerry.  Then we circled Preston and dropped coon food at our spot and headed on our way.  The cedar wax wings were out again tonight, along with a few herons, kingfishers, and martins.  Across from Graceland, we slowed down for a mother wood duck and her 9 babies to cross right in front of us!  We didn’t stay long at the dam, Boots got spooked by early fireworks.  We circled around for a while waiting for the sun set. Just when we started home, a raccoon started his scrounge for dinner by the ski course!  A little further down, we saw another duck family and 4 other ducks.  Once at Preston, we saw a tiny raccoon eat our yummies we left and before long another tiny one joined it!  The squabbled a bit then shared.  We watched for a while then headed on home.  Docked at 9:55.


Sunday, June 27th, 2010

We went down to dock for evening ride and when Mike tried to start MJ, nothing.  He hooked up the charger we bought in Akron and it wasn’t enough to turn her over.  So, Mike tried some other things and checked on battery while I took puppies to the island on the pontoon.  When I came home, Mike said the battery was dead.  It wasn’t even a year old.  Have to return it tomorrow.

Algonac – Where it all began…

Sunday, June 27th, 2010

This is “Where It All Began.” Sponsored by the Michigan chapter of the ACBS in the place where Smith and Wood lived, worked and played. Algonac Michigan is located on the St.Clair River. It’s wide and deep with little jet ski’s running along with freighters and such. The show was held at the Algonac Harbour Club and consists of some deep water docks with many large boats. Back behind the restaurant, the woodies were moored below for everyone to view. There was plenty of room for us to have our dogs here… We’ll be marking this show in our calendar for next year!

This particular boat show was special in that a statue of Gar Wood and Christoper Smith was unveiled next the Algonac/Clay Historical Society Museum. Most of the remaining Smith’s and Wood’s were there for the event and our timing couldn’t have been better. We arrive just after the unveiling just in time to see many of the woodies cruising by in a parade.

We got quite a few good pictures while we were there. Here’s a few random ones from our gallery…

f168.jpg Algonac115.jpg f167b.jpg Algonac128b.jpg

Be sure to check out the rest of the photos in our Gallery

And, while there we also saw a “WoodyBoater” pick-up truck, so be sure to check out his site for more coverage of the event and some even better photos a few post down…


Saturday, June 26th, 2010

We left home towing MJ , we  picked up KFC and headed for Pontiac Park and launched at 7:35.  Mike and the puppies loaded up and took off while I took the truck and trailer home.   I met them at our dock and off for evening cruise. The river is at the lowest level we have seen all summer. Lots of people fishing and lots of boats out tonight.  Its great to be home on our own river.  It was like the river knew we hadn’t take a ride on it lately and to welcome us back, cedar wax wings were all over the river catching bugs, saw two duck families, a deer by the three big pipes. and on the way home, we saw a raccoon across from the old state park and 6 raccoons on the north side of Preston all before arriving home at 9:50.  What a ride and gorgeous sunset!  The battery acted funny on way home.

Portage Lakes Antique & Classic Boat Show

Saturday, June 26th, 2010

The Portage Lakes Antique & Classic boat show is one of the oldest shows in the country. This 35th annual event is co-sponsored by the North Coast Ohio chapter of the Antique & Classic Boat Society (ACBS) and the Portage Lakes Historical Society.

The show was held at the docks of
“The Olde Harbor Inn” and “Hook,
Line & Drinkers” restaurants.

There were quite a few magnificent woodies displayed with several receiving awards. Be sure to check out the event’s show photos



Friday, June 25th, 2010

Well, we launched again at 1:40 after a quick jolt from a charger we bought last night.  We headed right for the ski area just to be able to run fast and recharge the battery. We took 4 quick laps, hopefully this will work. Saw 2 more woodies, one in a boat garage and another at a dock. They are starting to pop up! As we headed through the passes to the west reservoir, we saw another and one more on the West reservoir, that one actually out for a cruise named Sasha.  We circled “Cormorant Island” and headed back.  We stopped at a boat launch half way back to let the dogs out for a walk and a swim, it was much needed! Then once back at Turkeyfoot Lake, we took 3 more quick laps before pulling at 3:55.

We went back to camp and had “puppy” time, ate and were back at the boat launch at 8:00 for our evening cruise!  Lots of boats everywhere coming and going, its crazy!  First thing we headed for ski area to charge battery and at the end of first lap. we were stopped by the Watercraft Patrol!  They asked see safety equipment, which we were all set, Then he ran our boar serial and it didn’t come back. So, he ran the actual decal number and it didn’t come back either!  Not our weekend!  He ended up giving 2 warning just to have our info to check when he got into the office.  We took our cruise to the west reservoir and back.  We saw plenty of duck, geese,cormorants and 4 swans. We also saw 3 other woodies at docks we hadn’t seen before!  We pulled out at 10:15.  Mike doesn’t think we can put in for the boat show because of the battery situation.


Thursday, June 24th, 2010

Arrived in Akron today,  Staying at the Portage Lake campgrounds.  We checked in and got all set up, ate and were ready to go.  Found out we couldn’t run our woodie on the reservoir connected to the campground…electric motors only.  So off we set to find the other part of the park off route 93 where we launched before.  We launched at 6:45 and off we went.  Lots of geese, ducks and swans.  We putted our ways through the passes and out to the west reservoir where we found Hook, Line and Drinkers, where the boat show will be on Sat.  In one of the inlets, we saw an island that had 5 or 6 trees and half were covered in Cormorants.  Upon closer inspection, we saw 2 adults per nests and hundreds of nests!  What a site!  We started back for the boat launch and just as we got back to Turkeyfoot Lake, we saw a woodie!  It looked like it was its first launch, no stickers or decals of any kind and no flags.  Think they are getting it ready for the boat show. We’d seen other but only in boat garages.  Went over see and says hi then headed for the docks.  I went up with the dogs, backed the trailer in and waited for Mike to drive onto trailer when the boat wouldn’t start.  Pulled her onto trailer at 8:55.  From there, we headed into town to find a means to charge the battery, Mike thinks that is the problem.

Rash Repair Update

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

pictures/update coming soon…


Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

Our Riviera’s dock rash has been repaired, but mother nature has halted our camping plans. We had planned on leaving for Akron around 2:00pm but a couple small storms came through and dampened any thoughts of leaving. Akron is 3 1/2 to 4 hours away so by leaving around 4:00pm would have us rushing to setup just to sleep… Stephanie called the camp to let them know we would not be coming until tomorrow. They told her the campgrounds were clearing out for the night that at the time they had hail and were expecting tornadoes this evening. We decided to wait until morning hoping the weather would clear up…

Tornado warnings currently have us following the storms here in Defiance, and one hit Evansport and our internet went down…

Dock Rash Repair

Monday, June 21st, 2010

Our Chris-Craft Riviera is about ready


Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Due to the boo boo, Mike and the puppies headed up river about 3:30 with the river roaring to pull our Rivi out to fix!  I drove the truck and trailer to Pontiac Park to meet them.  I back the trailer up and down the ramp and did it perfectly on the first try!  The whole trip took 45 min round trip.  But the boys still had to have their nightly ride, so out we went on the pontoon to the island.


Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

No ride last night due to rain, again.  Everyone out west needs to stop sending it this way, give us a break for a couple of weeks!  We left tonight at 7:55.  Strong current even backing away from the dock.  Saw a mom wood duck and babies by the RR bridge, they were tiny.  Then, under the Hopkins St bridge where we pass under, a BIG tree blocking half the opening.  We made it past and headed to the Maumee which was full of debris.  Saw a pontoon but it quickly turned and headed home.  Mike sure got his maneuverability put to the test tonight with all the debris.  We saw two deer on the river’s edge just before the 281 bridge.  Once at the dam, the dividers of the boat ramps were almost under water.  Mike walked the dogs and we headed home.  We saw a couple more deer in the woods by the GM water intake and two more families of duck, one had 16 babies!  Once home, while docking, the current kicked our stern into the dock making a pretty good gouge…this didn’t make Mike happy.  Got home at 9:55.


Sunday, June 13th, 2010

We tried going for a ride last night, got as far as uncovering and putting in 5 gal of gas before we heard thunder.  Called it quits and tried to have fire but was rained out.  Tonight we added another 2 gal of gas and headed out at 7:15, there is some debris on Auglaize but tons of BIG debris on Maumee.  I think people are tried of waiting for the water to go down because we saw lots of boats out tonight!  The guy with the crew shell put his dock in, along with the ski club and the people 3 house down from them.  On way to dam, we saw a deer by 3 big pipes and a raccoon trying to get over fallen down tree.  Swallows and martins swarming everywhere! Hard getting into dock area due to so much debris in the inlet of the dock ramps. The gang way at the dam was totally under water, Mike had fun crossing!  We spent a while between the dam and the 281 bridge. Glad we did because we saw 2 different deer on the river bank, 2 in the woods, and another by water intake!  Lots of heron and ducks on way home.  Was great ride till we hit Auglaize on way home and soooo much debris it was hard to avoid!  Finally got home at 9:55.


Thursday, June 10th, 2010

We headed out at 8:00 tonight.  Lots of debris everywhere, both big trees, limbs, and all the little stuff too.  We saw two pontoons from just the other side of the “rock pass”  heading out just as we past their dock but other than that, we had the river to ourselves.  The river is even higher tonight. The gang-way at the dam was under water so Mike had some fancy footwork to do to get across to walk the dogs.  We figure weather or flooding is coming because other than one heron and two kingfishers and a night hawk, no wildlife to speak of tonight.  As we came back through the “rock pass”, the people with the concrete sidewalk falling in were connecting a dock!  Got had a time docking due to the current but pulled in at 9:55.


Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

No ride last night due to rain,  making the river go up even higher!  We left tonight about 7:35 in MJ, Boots is a little under the weather.  Saw 3 rafts and 2 boats by Pontiac Park and a few fishermen on the banks.  We dropped a small raccoon food drop on the back side of Preston Island, checked out the turtle on the logs and headed for the dam.  I looked up just in time at the 3 big drain pipes to see 2 fawns and a doe, wow were they tiny!  Then, just a couple boat lengths away, we saw another deer at the stone piles and GM cooling ponds.  Across from Graceland, we saw the hugest leather back turtle we’ve ever seen on the river!  The boys had fun at the dam invade on a couple’s picnic! I fixed the rub rail on the dam dock with a few nails and hammer.  Then off again to watch the sunset.  We had a mom wood duck and 4 ducklings cross in front of us and just where we were settling in to watch the sunset, we saw a mess of geese and their young running into the woods and just beyond them we saw another deer lay just off the river bank near a pile of branches!  I didn’t think we could see much more but then by the 3 pipes again, we saw another doe with the tiniest fawn, you could only see it when it was running!  Just past them, on the edge of the woods, we saw another two larger deer!  What a night, not to mention all the bank and cliff swallows, heron, kingfisher, purple martin, and common night hawks we saw!  No raccoons at the food drop.  But, circled around Preston to check on the 3 rafters floating down river but they looked like they were getting along just fine!  Mike sped up and got back to Pontiac Park before it got too dark, waved to 2 more boats and headed up the Auglaize.  In the middle of the “rock pass” we passed a boat fishing, the boys barked and then it home to dock.  Pulled into dock at 9:35.


Monday, June 7th, 2010

A beautiful evening as we headed out for our evening woodie cruise at 7:45.  There is a lot of foam on the surface so trying to figure out what is debris and what is foam is making it a challenging ride tonight.  It has been great watching the black birds and red wing black birds diving for bugs!  We also have swallows and purple martins darting around us snapping up bugs from every direction!  Lets not forget all the herons, duck, and kingfishers too.  While sitting at the dam while Mike walked Boots and Sam, someone else was walking their pit, a very friendly dog, and a Baltimore Oriele flew overhead!  We were blesses to see a fawn tonight that couldn’t be more than a couple days old across from Graceland house.  A little further down as we watched the sun set, we watched a Cooper’s hawk get chased from tree to tree by black birds.    We got to witness all three sun sets tonight with the purple-pink clouds at the second and the last having orange-peach and yellow clouds!  Lots of debris on the way home but we did see another boat by the library.  Slow going on the Auglaize but finally arrived home at 9:50.  Beautiful ride but a little chilly 68.

A day with NCO of ACBS

Monday, June 7th, 2010

The North Coast Ohio chapter of the ACBS in centered around Akron, and seems to be home/cottage owners of Portage Lakes. We arrived around 12:45pm at Portage Lakes state park’s boat ramps off of 93 just a mile south of 619. Had no idea where to go from the docks and tried to call Jack Lynett to no avail as our cell wouldn’t connect? Shortly after getting out of the channel though, we could see a line of woodies docked across the lake at the Turkeyfoot Island Club.

There were only nine boats present at the NCO Rendezvous but it was a stormy overcast day. A few of the boats that showed up…
xxx xxx

What a Wet Spring…

Monday, June 7th, 2010

The weather has been strange this year. We got an extra early start with several warmer than average days in April. Normally, we don’t attempt to put our dock in until after Memorial Day. This year, we were over a month early getting the dock in, and the river’s ever changing level has been quite a challenge, but evrything has been okay other than not being able to get out to the dock a couple times for a total of 8 to 12 hours.

Cruises on the Rivers are slow going because of the debris but it all a good time when riding in our Chris-Craft Riviera…

Just the other day (Friday) we check out the condition of our boats only to find a small (25′ – 30′) tree had got caught under our Riviera. After almost an hour of trying to free this monstrosity, we ended up attaching a rope and pulling it out forcefully with another boat.

After we regathered everything, we took the Rivi for a ride. What we encountered on the way…

Our Tree pulled Free…

Big Obstacles…

Debris at Independence State Park

Ridin’ Home in Style…


Riviera’s Ready

Monday, June 7th, 2010
Our Riviera has had some time in the water and is running great. But for the record, our blog entry, “Pre-Season Prep,” didn’t include any photos. Well, I got a new camera for my birthday from my mom. So, here’s a few pictures…

Old fuel tank
strap connectors


New connection

And new flax in our Shaft-log and Rudder-log…
And we were pleasantly surprised
to see the bilge cleanup so well…
And for a recap of some of 2009’s work: The transom and aft quarter-round was stripped down to bare wood, sanded, stained, and varnished. The second picture below shows the difference in color between the years of service…
All in all, everything has been good this year. We spent less than 100 hours preparing for this years boating season. That about 1/4 of the time spent most years…


Ready to Ride in 2010…

6/6/10 Evening Cruise

Sunday, June 6th, 2010

We headed out with James and the puppies around 7:50, cooler tonight, needed sweatshirts!  The turtle people. as we have nicknamed, were working cutting up their downed tree.  Only saw 1 other boat but got to see lots of swallows and martins and cedar wax wing chasing bugs.  Once again, we saw a deer on the waters edge down by the dam and a momma duck with 7 babies. We arrived home at 9:25.

6/6/10 Afternoon

Sunday, June 6th, 2010

After the storms of last night and threat of hail and tornadoes, we put MJ back in at Pontiac around 4:20 this afternoon.  We had a quick ride around Preston where we saw a red tailed hawk being chased by a group of starlings!  Also saw 3 turtles and a few heron.  Only saw 2 other boats out.

6/5/10 Trip to Turkeyfoot Island Club

Saturday, June 5th, 2010

We headed out for Akron about 8am.  After getting a little lost and driving through a few showers, we arrived at Portage Lake docks around 1:00pm.  Lots of geese greeted us as we put MJ in, which the puppies loved!  We weren’t sure where we were going but quickly spotted the line of woodies all docked in a row.  A couple of members came down to help with the docking then headed up for a picnic lunch.  We had a nice time but didn’t last before the rain decided to invade.  We tried sticking it out but when cleared no end in sight for the rain we headed back to the launch but not before a quick putt around one little inlet!  Saw some cormorants, swans and a few ducks. Pulled out about 2:45 in the rain.