A few Columbus Sail & Power Squadron/29 members drove to Ripley, Ohio, one Thursday in August 2021 to get a jump on the weekend. We met at Eagle Creek Marina—our launch site.
The marina’s campground has a large parking lot for vehicles and trailers, and a launch ramp wide enough to launch two boats simultaneously. There’s even a boat washdown area for cleaning your trailered boat before heading home. Launching and parking costs $5 on the honor system and includes a long dock for tying up.
Instead of cooking or going out for dinner that night, we sent out for pizza. Everyone wanted the same items, so we ordered an awesome 28-inch pizza, which was more than enough for 10 people.
After breakfast the next day, we headed downriver to Augusta, Kentucky, home of singer-actress Rosemary Clooney (aunt to George Clooney) whose house has been turned into a museum. We walked around town, visited quaint shops and enjoyed great ice cream before continuing downriver to Captain Anthony Meldahl Locks and Dam. Deciding not to lock through, we headed back upstream to the Ripley Boat Club for lunch. The service was good, and everyone was friendly.
On Saturday, we headed upriver to the Manchester Islands, where we dropped anchor and enjoyed a refreshing swim. As the day wore on, the beach filled up with people and boats. On the way back to camp, a seaplane decided to take off; two of our vessels—a personal watercraft and another boat—gave it a run for its money during takeoff.
On the final day of our trip, we enjoyed Sunday breakfast before heading upstream 3 miles on Eagle Creek, a no-wake zone. We enjoyed the beautiful scenery and the birds, which were out in full force.
We turned around and cruised back to Augusta. If you’re ever in the area, I highly recommend stopping at the Augusta Pub for lunch. After visiting a few more stores, we made our way back to the launch ramp to load and clean the boats before heading home after enjoying one of the best weekends ever.