Down by the River
Finally we were able to ride alongside the Missouri River. Yesterday we crossed it in a separate bike lane on a busy highway near Boonsville, Missouri, but then we rode away from it and didn’t get back until we reached Rocheport last night.
This morning, however, we started paralleling the river after about ten minutes. That made the ride extra special. On our left were high rock bluffs and on our right was the great Missouri.
Poisonous or Not?
We saw migrating ducks, the little blue birds, our fifth snake of the trip, and about eight bikers. Today’s snake was a surprise, as I almost stepped on it. We were taking a break for Martha’s back and I was trying to adjust my panniers to be tighter and more secure when I looked down near my feet to see this two foot long blackish snake with at least one yellow stripe and some red markings. It wasn’t a copperhead or rattler, so it might have been harmless, but it’s still not a friendly sight. I asked her to take her picture so that we could get Ron to identify it, she stood up on the bench and zoomed in. Snakes are not my thing and they are definitely not Martha’s! My other surprise is that Martha picked off at least two ticks from my shirt and one from my bike pack. Maybe I picked them up when we took a short steep hike this morning up a bluff to the overlook. I hope there are no more on me.
We stopped at Cooper’s Landing on the river for a morning break and then at Dotty’s Cafe in Hartsburg for lunch, where she had all sorts of Elvis items all over the walls. One of her signs was “Elvis fans parking only. Violators will be all shook up.” My sister-in-law Kay would have really enjoyed her Elvis collection, especially there in what seems like the middle of nowhere. Actually, I am beginning to really like Missouri. The people are friendly and the topography is interesting and varied.
Our weather has been perfect for biking. Of course it’s also been a plus not to have had any mechanical problems. Tomorrow there is a bike shop near the trail where we will get our tire pressure checked before we begin our last big day of biking. Today we covered 40 miles and made it to downtown Jefferson City, the state capital, where we are staying in Capitol Plaza Hotel, a fancy hotel, at an incredibly good deal called a “biker’s package.” To get here into the city, we got to ride a switchback bike path that led to a bike lane back across the Missouri River. That was fun! We both feel good that we have had such a neat adventure so far.