"The Water World of America's Heartland"
( Why cruising the Great Loop is much-much more than just a great loop. )
The Ohio River
© 1993 - captainjohn.org
This leg of your journey is only 46 miles, from Cairo, IL to the Tennessee River at Paducah, KY.
    As a side-trip the Ohio River offers another 935 miles from Paducah to Pittsburgh.
Paducah is Mile 935 on the Ohio and Mile 0 on the Tennessee River.
The Ohio River It begins at the confluence of the Allegheny river near Pittsburgh, and flows 981 miles to join the Mississippi
at Cairo, Ill. There are 53 Locks on the Ohio RIver. Cairo of course, is where we Loopers are introduced to the Ohio.
In Summertime, there are long lines of pleasure boats waiting at locks. We were told over 30,000 recreational boats locked through
the Pittsburgh District’s locks last year.
Folks, between the Ohio, Cumberland, and Tennessee rivers and lakes, these are the safest most scenic and enjoyable side-
trips you can make.  Fishing is at an all time high, as the quality of the water and the fish have dramatically improved over the past
years. It is a long ride up from the Mississippi to Pittsburgh, and another long ride back down; but I can't think of a better use of the
time spent your boat.
Bon voyage!  (Did you know that means "good journey"?)
If no where else, the Ohio should wet your appetite for more side-trips and adventure as you cruise though the Heartland's
Planned right, and weather abiding, by the time you reach the Cumberland, Kentucky, and Barkley Lakes they will be a
kaleidoscope of Fall colors. The cool breeze, the sharp scent of apples, and a dazzling array of brilliant colors will blanket everything
you see from the shoreline to the tops of the rolling hills.
In Fall, the entire area transforms itself into an amazing blast of intense yellow, gold, orange and red landscapes. If you take the
time (and we strongly suggest you do) stop at all the "Welcome Centers" and pick up the area's calendar of Fall & Apple Festivals
along your route. There is such a variety of autumn activities surrounding you in this area, leaf peeping Loopers will find it difficult to
decide what to do next.
Cruising the Cumberland River - click next.
America's Great Loop
www.captainjohn.org                                                                      - Cruising America's Great Loop - Once Around Is Not Enough -
Cruising the Inland Rivers in Fall will bless you with a kaleidoscope of ever changing brilliant colors.
We highly recommend being here in early October for this amazing display of fall foliage. We also
highly recommend a side-trip on the Tennessee River to Knoxville, where a 1-hour car rental will take you to
Gatlinburg, TN and the top of the Great Smokey Mountains. Both of which are incredible destinations.