8 – JOURNAL
JUNE 3 FRIDAY DAY 39 ON THE WATER – Not a bad night’s sleep considering that I was literally busy YESTERDAY from 7 until 9:30. But I got everything done. I was up, shaved, had yogurt and granola once again and shoved off by 8.
What a joy to have current once again. In had some thunder and lightning and rain with wind both directions throughout the day. I got hung up once on some shallow area but overall I think I went a good 45 miles plus. I will be in Sioux City before noon. A week from today I will be able to come within a couple of days when I will get to St. Louis.
I will find some Wi Fi when I get there and up load the journals I have ready.
In must have seen at least 100 plus eagles today. I saw a group of 13 of them feeding on a large dead paddle fish. Also a lot of beaver sign.
It was 5 and had gone far enough, for sure, for my 1st day back on the river. I came around a bend and there was a boat ramp.
I am always leery of putting the tent in spots like this because you never know which direction the wind can come from. Luckily it is coming out of the north and I am on the south side of the trees. It is really blowing and probably we will have a good thunder storm but I am ready.
I had chili for dinner with cold milk and a couple of sweets. Tomorrow should be a good day again.
JUNE 4 SATURDAY DAY 40 ON THE WATER – Pretty much on my schedule for being on the water by 7:30. It is about 20 miles to Sioux City, I am going to stop at a marina there.
The only difficulty I had was getting through some shallow water and once again had to get out of the kayak out in the middle of the river and pull it until I found the channel.
The river is still fairly wide until you get within about 5 miles and it narrows down and that starts the run 750 miles to St Louis. But once in the channel you know it. There is substantial current. There is no rift raft in the channel. There are mile markers letting you know how many river miles is remaining. Cool.
I have set up on a sand bar 1st time I have done so, but it is fairly protected. There could be a thunder shower but overall the weather starting tomorrow for the next 10 days is in the 80’s and 90’s, so I am sure I will be utilizing the umbrella for shade. In 10 days I could be 400 miles down the river so as I go I keep changing my weather data to try to keep up with it.
JUNE 5 SUNDAY DAY 41 ON THE WATER – Another very long day but productive one. Went 50 miles which is a long ways under any set of circumstances. The current is constantly moving and appears to be so far consistent.
This is what the Mile Markers look like.
I got to Decatur Marina and stopped to get a few things. There was a restaurant bar, very popular place, very busy. The owner said I could use his car to run down to the little store in town. I once again had another hamburger, which I swear is going to be the last time. Then I went and got ice and a few things and was back on the river.
I paddled until about 6:30, until I hit the 50-mile marker, 772 and found a private boat ramp in a little community and asked one of the residents if I could put my tent up and he said no problem. Nobody is here anyway.
It is difficult for me to admit it but I am very, very tired. I know a lot of it is the heat. I did utilize the umbrella for a good while for shade. I do need to take it just a little bit easier, after all I’m not 35 even though I feel like I am most of the time.
I am enamored with the pilings that are along the bank, literally since the mileage marker 750. They have to be well over 100 years old maybe 200 years old and a lot of them have disappeared but a lot of them are still standing. It had to have taken 1000’s and 1000’s of the posts. Where did they come from? Miles and miles of the cable and 10,000’s of the spikes to hold the cable at the top of the piling and the rail in between them. There are 3 each to each piling. It had to have been during the steamboat, paddle wheel days. I am determined to find a book/information about how and why it was done.
The weather is supposed to be good for 6/10 days. In the 90’s at the end of the week. Good in some respects but not so good in others ways. I cannot imagine the heat not creating some pretty good thunderstorms in the evenings.
This is a good spot,,,,,I should sleep good tonight. I need to.
I will have to admit when I do engage somebody in conversation, which by the way is not that often, they are somewhat taken aback with the enormity of this trip.
If I have been offered a beer once it has been 50 times on the water. It makes me feel good to say no thanks.