Chicago Industry and the Waterways

For SEASONS the Loop Adventure starts when we enter the CAL- SAG Waterway. Since Dorothy and I have sailed and raced all over Lake Michigan it does not feel like we start the trip we are working our way down the Illinois River.

First off a nice sunrise over the steel mills of Indiana.


The Cal-Sag Channel (short for “Calumet-Saganashkee Channel”) is a navigation canal in Illinois.  It is 16 miles (26 km) long and was dug over an 11-year period, from 1911 until 1922. (Wikipedia)

This is one of the most industrial sections of the entire Loop trip. The Go pro is mount on the front of SEASONS and takes a picture every 5 seconds.


I am working on the videos. Its a learning curve. I need to add some cool sound tracks.

The lowest bridge which every boat must go under is the Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe railroad bridge. It will not and has not opened for many years. The height from the water is 19′ 7″.  We cleared it by about a 1 1/2 feet.



As you look at these photos keep this statistic in mind, A standard barge tow carries the equivalent of 1,070 truckloads or 216 rail cars of product. Some of these products are  corn, soybeans, chemicals, petroleum products, fertilizer, ethanol, cement, styrene, sand, gravel, wood products and raw materials for steel mills.

Chemical or petroleum dock


Red flagged barges carry hazardous cargo.


Scrap aluminium for recycling.


Mulch for the city of Chicago


Sand and salt dock. the black pile is salt covered with a tarp.


This is a barge and towboat repair facility.


Another chemical facility.


After this section the river will become more scenic, However our interaction with the commercial tows will continue.


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