„To the Ocean“

Katie (l) and Jessie ready to head on from Harbour Point Yacht Club after the segelradio interview
Katie (l) and Jessie ready to head on from Harbour Point Yacht Club

Katie and Jessie showed up next to Paulinchen in a dinghi near Havana somewhere on the Illinois River. Both started just a few weeks ago from Michigan and are doing part of the Great Loop south towards the gulf coast. Over an extended morning coffee at Harbor Point Yacht Club on the Mississippi we sat in Paulinchen‘s cockpit and talked about expectations at the beginning of a cruise and how they have been welcomed by the cruising family so far.
You can find the recording in Podcast Episode 4 at www.segelradio.de

Sights along the River

Paulinchen with her stepped down mast heads southbound on Illinois River
Heading down the Illinois River. After a few days the River became wider. But it is still too shallow to take chances and risk to drift aground.

It is quite funny to go down a river with a boat set up and loaded to cross an ocean. At it’s very first moment it sounds like a quick and easy run. Step the mast, fire up the diesel and go. Daytrips, made of boring hours following a buoyed path to get somewhere. Then: exiting new sights into the heartland of America. Who thought about how challenging this might become right after the first few days.

Drawing six feet is not a problem. Not even now that some of the Waterways are on a “low water watch”. Low Water for barges and tows means still more than nine feet and in freshwater I draw – learned that the hard way – more six than the five I draw in saltwater. Weiterlesen

On the Way

As a cold front passes, fall like weather arrives at the illinois river. First time wearing fleece and fall weather gear since end of may.
First time I have to wear fleece and fall weather gear since end of may

The first hundred miles of river disappeared in Paulinchens keel wake and it looks like it is time to speed up a little on the way south. Storms and rain made the last trip to Ottawa, Illinois a little less comfortable.

But I appreciate the weatherchange as every drop of rain raises the water level a little bit. And that is more important than I thought in the beginning. Doing all the research I before heading this way I was tempted by reading the about a controlled depth of nine feet all the way down. Now I found what I have overseen in the planning. This does not apply to the facilities for pleasure craft. Weiterlesen

New Website

Heading more and more inland
Heading more and more inland through the states towards the gulf coast

The more I get inland the more people who do not speak german start to follow this trip. So decided to start writing from time to time in english last year. The solution was a little temporary and thanks to Hilary I finally made a decision on how to name a plain english blog. So from now on I will not continue posting english articles on my german website at www.hinnerk-weiler.de. Instead post them here at least as good as i can. Welcome to „Paulinchen-worldwide.com“. There are still some flaws, but these will be gone in a few days. Do not forget to bookmark it now.

Current Mission until December 2012: Cruising the US Midwest by boat

Sailing the US Heartland sounds a little uncommon and in fact bridges and Powerlines make it impossible to use the wind to head down for the first part of it. And I am still wondering how many german boats might have ever taken this route after crossing the ocean at all. I know of three (one of them a powerboat that started it‘s trip where I did). So I know I am not the first but at least the attention the flag at Paulinchen‘s stern draws, provides a little insight to the fact that boats from overseas are not too common here.

Heading into downtown chicago by boat on Chicago River
Chicago River takes Paulinchen right through downtown Chicago into the Riversystem

The mast is stepped and Paulinchen has been converted to a powerboat in Chicago to begin traveling the rivers. The Trip startet right downtown Chicago with Lock Number „one“. At least I will refer to „Chicago Lock“ as „Number one“ counting how many I will have to pass until I reach the Gulf Coast. Weiterlesen