Paddled Hermann to Washington today. The temp was in the 90′s last Saturday, so decided to wait until today. The weather was gorgeous, but, the river has gone down significantly and was much slower today than it has been in a while. This was the longest trip I have taken on in one day at 30 river miles, though I think the gps put it at 28. I would go get the gps and look right now, but, I am REALLY tired!
The drive out went well, K. drove out with me and dropped my car back off at Washington. Tip: having friends with kids home from college or on break from high school to help drive is a real plus!
Hermann has two very nice ramps right next to each other. There were a lot of people putting in for fishing and recreational boating. Nice atmosphere, friendly people and wineries galore! Great town to visit and StoneHill Winery (among others) has a very nice restaurant.
A few miles downriver, I hear a horn and look back to see a rather large (double-wide) barge back at the turn. I move to the inside of the channel leaving the opportunity to get behind a dyke if needed. He was moving pretty slow. Once he got nearer, it was clear his wake was very small, so, I just kept paddling and watched him pass. At a safe distance, I got behind him and took a picture of the engine. It was ‘Leslie B.’ from Port of New Orleans. My daughter’s name is Leslie B., so, that was pretty cool!
I noticed this section of the river has a lot more turbulence underneath as compared to the bottom 50 miles of the river. I believe this area is much shallower and I suspect that telegraphs the obstructions below. I’ll get some more info on that and post later.
I stopped for lunch in New Haven. Miller had mentioned in his book that there were bathrooms there and I was just past the halfway mark and thought I would take a break. There is a typical concrete ramp there, but, the surrounding area is rock or very deep mud, so I used the ramp. There was a lot of traffic from fishing and recreational boaters. There are some beaches nearby that a lot of folks were heading to.
I really enjoyed the paddle. This is beautiful country and I am constantly reminded at how lucky we are to be in the heart of Missouri. I have lived on both coasts and overseas in my life, and there really isn’t anything like the hills, rivers, farmland, and bluffs of Missouri. Simply gorgeous. I ran into a bunch of folks from the St. Louis Canoe and Kayak club when I reached Washington. It was a lot of fun to see so many fellow paddlers in one place!
Then, when I got home, there was a box on the front porch with a b-day present from my sister; a pair of waterproof, floating binoculars! hee hee. I have a really cool sister! she gets me!
I did get the new SmartTrack pedals installed and LOVE them. I am still adjusting here and there, this was just the second time I paddled with them installed. I had to make a mounting plate because the pedals and SmartTrack adjustment plate do not fit my boat. It was a bit of an adventure, so, I will blog about how that got done in another post.
Everyone please be safe and happy paddling!