Friday, May 3, 2013

The End – But Not The End!

May 3, 2013


On Friday, May 3, 2013, at 11:00 a.m., M/V Blue Heron crossed her wake when we pulled into Waterside Marina in Norfolk, Virginia, at Mile Marker 0 on the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. Nearly a year to the day from when we started, and after 7,000 miles, 2 countries, 16 states, 145 (or so) locks and countless bodies of water, Captains Craig and Barbara, along with our patient and loyal crew members Joey and Bailey, have joined the company of Gold Loopers! During our years of planning this trip, we anticipated that it would be an adventure of a lifetime, but in every way it has exceeded our expectations. What an extraordinary experience to spend every day for an entire year traveling to new places, seeing new sights and meeting new people! We feel so blessed to have been able to do this and to have shared it with so many wonderful new friends. We have memories to last a lifetime, but the best and most enduring memories will be of the friendships we made along the way. We are grateful, too, to our family and friends near and far who have been so supportive of and so interested in this crazy plan we hatched to circumnavigate eastern North America. It made it so much easier to leave home for a year knowing that you were with us in spirit, and having several of you join us at times along the way.

Over the next few days we will celebrate in Norfolk, first with Karen, our dear daughter and year-long postmistress, and after she leaves, with 200 or so past, present and future Loopers at the Spring Rendezvous here at Waterside. After that we will cruise up to Deltaville, VA for more Looper camaraderie and to give Blue Heron a well-deserved once-over after her long trip. She has been the perfect boat for us and for this trip, and we feel grateful to her, too, for carrying us safely on this very long journey. She looks great flying her Gold Looper burgee!

What’s next? We plan to return to Glendale in mid-late May, and spend some time at home catching up with friends and family and digging in on accumulated projects around the house. Sometime this summer we will return to Blue Heron and cruise more of the Chesapeake. In late summer or fall, we will begin the trip south, bringing her back to Hilton Head or somewhere in that direction, and we hope to return to the Keys and southwest Florida for a month or so next winter. We may not take on an adventure quite as ambitious as the Loop in the foreseeable future, but having had a taste of the cruising life, we’re not ready to stop!

In a while, after we’ve had time to ponder the magnitude of this experience, we may find more articulate words to describe what the Great Loop has meant to us. For now, the best words seem to be along the lines of “Wow, look what we did!”

IMG_0634  IMG_0657 IMG_0659 



  1. YAY! Congrats on a very impressive accomplishment. I am so proud of you two for making this happen and can't wait to celebrate!

  2. Congratulations you two, and welcome to the Gold Loopers Club! We're so pleased and impressed to hear of your accomplishment. You did it with real style, and we felt so fortunate on our own Loop to count you among our short list of Favorite Loopers, people we were always happy to see when we pulled into another marina. We enjoyed your friendship, sharing meals, your dogs, your senses of humor and helpfulness, and your hugs. We hope to cruise with you in the very different waters of the Pacific Northwest someday. Meanwhile, WAY TO Go! Love,
    Cathryn and Bob

  3. I thought I'd been keeping an eye on this blog, but discovered 15 posts today that I needed to catch up on. Can't wait to get together to talk about this adventure. Maybe we could meet at Karen's sometime this summer before you take off again. I need to tell her I will be in Indy for four days the second week of June.


    Love, Tom