Monday, August 8, 2011

6.8 mile Kayak Trip on the Meremac and Big Rivers, St. Louis County, Missouri, August 7th, 2011

Kayaking the Meremac and Big Rivers, Missouri

This was just what the doctor had ordered!  It had been a couple of weeks since I have paddled due to pulling a muscle in my back and the crazy schedule...this was excellent!  It was super hot, so I took my time in the initial put in.  I put in at the Route 66 State park ramp and went upstream.  Caught a medium sized largemouth on a Chomper Hula Grub with a stand up jig in some structure and shade.  I did not have a lot of fishing success the rest of the day.

It is amazing how much the gravel bar at the Big River confluence point has changed.  The heavy current comes a lot further and has some weird undertows.
I took a quick break and did a quick swim....that is the greatest thing about kayaking in the summer time on river.  No matter how hot it gets, as long as you can bring some water and can get in it, you really never have to worry about overheating.

I paddled up the Big River to the bridge.  I got on film these huge carp that were laying in the sun.  I was able to sneak up on them and scare them a bit.  I stopped at the bridge due to an old rock dam/levee.  I could have portaged around it, but I figured it would be good to get back (glad I did- about 15 min after I got out of the water, we had a thunderstorm).

Quick note: the real shame of the Big River is how much man made debris is on the bottom of the river (i.e pieces of metal, concrete stuff, etc).  You can tell it has been like this for awhile.  I would image it got there from attempts by people up river to keep the banks from least I would like to think that is why.

Paddle ON!



  1. Do you have any recommendations on rivers for beginners? Preferably in Missouri, closer to Kansas City than St. Louis.

  2. Hi Rachel,

    I am not as familiar with the KC area rivers as I am Central/Southern Missouri, Arkansas, etc. Here are a couple of thoughts: Finger Lakes State Park just north of Columbia- not a river with current, but you can get a good 4-6 mile paddle in these strip mine lakes that look just like a river....I have not kayaked the Moreau River just south of Jefferson City, but it looks like a nice beginner stream. I really like the Salt River between Mark Twain Lake and the Mississippi River- very calm river unless they are releasing waters held back from the lake.

    The Missouri Dept of conservation has a great publication- I belive it is called the paddlers guide to Missouri- It has some of the rivers North of KC mentioned in it- go to their web site and I bet you could find it....

    Hope this is helpful to you :)
    Paddle ON!


  3. MIke,
    I bought my first fishing kayak today. I live about a mile from the meremac and big river.
    Where should i put in on the big river for fishing?
    justin cox

  4. what is every trail and how does it work?
    Justin Cox