August 28, 2019
Dear Family & Friends:
I feel like I went from the best paddling day of the trip to the worst paddling day of the trip.
The journey from Sandy Bottoms-Up Campground to Dubuque was a nightmare. Even with the wind at my back, the waves were relentless and, at times, scary. I was on a lake created by Lock & Dam No. 11. This thought depresses me: there are 29 Locks & Dams and each one creates a lake with wind, waves and not much current. I have finished only 11 Locks & Dams.
After seven hours of tough paddling, I arrived at Lock No. 11. Sure enough, a tow pushing 14 barges was locking upstream. My wait: 1-1/2 hours. Fortunately, Donnie allowed me to wait on his tow which is parked at Lock 11. Donnie uses his tow to help the downstream tows steer their barges into the Lock.
Just a mile down from Lock 11, I arrived in Dubuque. I had a nice dinner at a riverside restaurant and stealth camped on a grassy bluff overlooking a bar and casino.