Saturday, September 17, 2011

Kayaking the Bourbouse River, Chouteau Claim Access, Franklin County, MO, September 10th, 2011

I had said to a friend of mine the other day that I did not really care for the Bourbouse River in Franklin County Missouri.  I said it was "too wrangly" with "not enough portage spots, etc".  After this kayak trip, I stand corrected.  It just goes to show that you cannot evaluate an entire river on one 4 mile stretch.

Kayaking the Bourbouse River near the Meremac, Missouri

EveryTrail - Find the best Hiking in Missouri

I put in at the Chouteau Claim Access in Franklin County.  This is right at the confluence point for the Bourbouse and the Meremac River.  This trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE!  I did over 8 miles, and fished all the way back (caught one really small smallmouth, but nothing to photograph or comment on).  However, the scenery was absolutely incredible.  I had to portage about (4) times or so on the way up current.  Three of these spots I just paddled right through on the way back.  I was fishing on one spot and I saw a very large deer walk across one of the portage spots from a distance.  I swear it look larger than average....look like an elk, believe it or not.

The wildflowers were in bloom, and the temperatures were moderate.  I am looking forward to going back to the access point and paddling up the Meremac side to see how far I can go.  Looking forward to my journeys back to this amazing river!

Paddle ON!


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Mississippi River, Dresser Island, Sept 9th, 2011: Rain cannot stop a true river rat!

Sing me the legends of the river.
Tell me a story of the sky.

Because I want to grow.
Because I want to know.
Because I want to understand.

In the river is the model of creation.
Our lives like the river to the sea.

Paint me a picture of the landscape.
Dance me the dance of the waves.
Sing me of the legends of the river.
Tell me the story of the sky.

~Author Unknown

Friday, September 9, 2011

Small stream paddling on the Loutre River, Montgomery County, MO. Sept 5th, 2011

The beginning slide of my Youtube video shows my 14' sea kayak attached to a kayak cart.  I debated even bringing this along....I am thankful I did!  I ended up doing about 4.5 miles, but much of it was dragging the kayak along the rock/sandbar to get to small pockets of water to paddle.  This would NOT be an enjoyable trip for an inexperienced paddler, or someone who was out of shape, or had any kind of joint injuries. 
So why did I continue to portage and move along the river?  I call it "Commitment to the paddle".  What else was I going to do that day, anyway?  Sit on the couch and watch other people be physically active?  I had told myself I wanted to explore this river.  I guess I get it from my military experience or something.  Seems like when you set out on a trip, you need to go all in...or don't go at all!

One of the rewards was the satisfaction of the trip.  This was a river I have been eyeballing for several years, always thinking "man, I would like to see what is up the river."  The second reward was getting on a bunch of fish towards the end of the trip (most were small, but I caught more than 10!).  I feel like it was a good day to get up on this river due to the wind anyhow.  If I would have been on, Horseshoe Lake, Illinois, for example, I probably would have had to "surf" the kayak back to shore.  Rivers and streams are much nicer on windy days.

Kayaking and Portaging the Loutre River, Missouri

EveryTrail - Find the best Hiking in Missouri
If you ever want to know the difference between a stream and a river, the Loutre will help you to define the difference between the two.  It is a stream for sure!

Paddle ON!