Broad Picture and Plans of Attack!

For more Land and Sea Adventures:





We’re starting this  blog to facilitate sharing our latest adventure –the Attack of the Great Loop–with family, friends, and apparently strangers lurking on the internet (welcome, btw!). Out of the chute, it’s felt almost as nerve-wracking and strange as the locals must have felt as the Brits pressed in to their towns. But we’ll see how it goes and perhaps add other adventures on land too–hence the name of the blog! ONE IF BY LAND, TWO IF BY SEA.  (Well, technically anything involved with water will be under the “By Sea” category.) So tip of the hat to Longfellow for coining the phrase that we’ve picked for more trivial and fun communications than rebelling against taxation without representation.

For the current adventure, here’s the general map; however, we aren’t starting close to the main Loop route.  The prologue to The Loop for us is to approach it via the Ohio River (beginning at The Point in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania).  Well, actually we started a few miles up river.  (See Red Dot for starting point)   Hope you check in often and enjoy the posts! xo

THE GREAT LOOP: Over 5000 miles long (depending on side-trips…did you say Cuba?….well, we DID say it ( as well as the Bahamas!)….but that will have to be another trip!)

MAP UPDATED::   SEPT 21,2017  !!!!!!

2017-6-6 best great loop pic map (8)_LI.jpg

We started Sept 3, 2016, just North of Pittsburgh on the Red Dot with a 922 mile prelude/side trip down the Ohio River  (all WHITE LINES ARE SIDE TRIPS! — ie NOT technically part of the Great Loop) to get to our official beginning  start point on the Loop (Green Dot at Green Turtle Bay, Grand Rivers, Kentucky).    The GREEN LINE represents our Loop trip. In addition to the Ohio River prelude/side trip, other side trips (WHITE) were: A small leg  up and back the Tennessee River to Florence, Alabama;   leg up and back the Black Warrior River in Alabama past Tuscaloosa (and nearly to Birmingham);  up and back the Potomac to Washington DC; and up and back the Sassafras River (at the north end of Chesapeake Bay).  All DOTS (except the pink one at Chicago) represent times we’ve flown home for 10-18 days (one dot for flight home is missing–right about where the “S” is in the word “Severn” in northern Canada).  As of September 20, 2017 we have traveled 7,827 miles and are a stone’s throw down a section of the Mississippi River and a turn toward the east)  from completing our Loop back at the green dot (Green Turtle Bay, Kentucky!)        [Any route marks that are not GREEN or WHITE are simply the possible routes of “The Great Loop.”]

UPDATE (10-19-16) The  Second Leg:  We left Green Turtle Bay, Grand Rivers, Ky which is just east and south of Paducah on the map below (and marked w/ a big green oval dot on the map above). As of 10-19-16 we are at the top (north end) of the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway (in dark purple on the map) where it branches off of the Tennessee River (which flows downstream to Paducah/the Mississipii –hence we were going UPriver from Green Turtle Bay to the head of the Tenn-Tom Waterway…which will then be “DOWN-river”


UPDATE (9-19-16):   THE OHIO RIVER:  Which we have now completed as of Sept 15, 2016! 922.5 miles (We started just north of Pittsburgh on the Allegheny River and we did NOT go that tiny little end knob section to the Mississippi River but rather turned left (aka east) (towards Nashville up the Cumberland River)

UPDATE: (5-15-2017)  Chesapeake Bay Area.  By the way, Chesapeake Bay is the largest estuary in the USA….followed by Puget Sound, Washington.

chesapeake map (2)
The Red Line traces our route out of the ICW through Norfolk, Virginia and up to the Eastern Shore.  Stopped at Cape Charles, Va, Ohancock, Va and Crisfield, Md  Drove to the Red Dots on the Atlantic Coast: Assateague and Chincoteague.  Plan to hit the Orange Dots (and other tbd spots) within this next week: Smith Island, Tangiers…..and then Washington DC!


UPDATE:  JUNE 8, 2017:

6-6 map_LI (8)
As of June 7, 2017 we were at the Schuyler Yacht Basin (Red Arrow).  Our route  will continue up the Champlain Canal, Champlain Lake and into Quebec, Canada to more canals and finally Lake Ontario, the Trent-Severin Waterway, and Georgia Bay on Lake Huron….following the green dash above. (but…..as you can see there are a lot of other canals and waterways that remain for future trips!)

At my request, Nick revised Longfellow’s The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere with a little artistic freedom to fit us:

LISTEN, my children, and you shall hear
Of the great boat trip that started this year,
On the fourth of September, in 2016;
Nick and Barb got on the Loop
Knowing not what to fear.

Nick said to Barb, “When running the river
Let’s look out for barges and whatever might be
Keeping red buoys to right while not missing greens,
Failure to do so will leave props obscene
And we’ll finish the trip by land not by sea.

Passing through locks with nary a shiver
Slowly but surely we’re learning the river.
Bollards are watched and lines always kept free
Passing through locks with nary a shiver 
Slowly but surely we’re learning the river.

For the original see:  http://poetry.eserver.org/paul-revere.html      or  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4hUMQG3MI8     for a live reading and cool old prints

6 thoughts on “HOME: ONE IF BY LAND, TWO IF BY SEA”

  1. LOVE your blog so far!! Being close to the neighborhood (Kentucky, etc.) thought you might be able to offset your fuel costs with a little moonshining on the side with the river providing good cover..
    “I’ve been a moonshiner goin’ on seventeen year.
    I spent all my money on whiskey and beer.
    I’ll go to some holler and set up my still,
    And sell you a gallon for a two-dollar bill.”
    “The Kentucky Moonshiner” (traditional)ttle.


  2. You guys really get around! Loved the history of the soft shell crab industry. So that’s how it’s done, huh? Never knew. Keep up the fascinating travelogue!


    1. Oops, pressed send to early . No Longer blogging but there are 2 blogs the original and the sequel. You might have been on the sequel? the original is: https://oneifbylandtwoifbyseablog.wordpress.com–mostly our Great Loop journey 2016-2017 and the sequel is: https://oneifbylandtwoifbysea2018.wordpress.com/ which is smattering of some miscellaneous boating and other travels. I just ran out of steam on those. The connectivity issues compounded by the effort to just became less fun….and besides, I am focusing on other writing!
      I do note in your picture you are sporting a Royal Harbour. Yay! I just told my husband that you have written in and he recognizes your boat name from the looper forum, etc. Double Yay!
      In a couple of weeks, we drive east to Florida to get rolling on our PDQ. will putz around Florida (all sides) and then head north with the geese. WIll leave the boat in NY in June and be positioned for the Down East Loop in 2023…assuming no change of plans. Big assumption. Perhaps we will see you out there on the east coast. Fari winds, Barb


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