Sept. 8, 2012


Cottonwood Island UM 290 to Cedar hill Resort UM 240

It was a nice calm quiet night and the sleep was good. We roll out of our bunks, make coffee and enjoy the early morning quiet. Deciding to pull out early, we put “the Belle” back into traveling mode and head back out into the channel. The weather is beautiful this morning with clear blue skies and fairly calm waters. An eagle flies overhead and we take that as a good sign to start the day after the one we had prior. For the next 7 miles we see pretty much nothing but nature until we pull into Louisiana, Missouri.

Eagles on the Mississippi









Louisiana, Missouri








We tie up to the dock and walk around town for a while stopping at the farmer’s market and eating a biscuit at the local diner. It’s a very quaint little town with a lot of character. Each little town along the river that we have visited has it’s own character expressed in the old-style architecture of the buildings and the downtown area.

Farmer’s Market














From Oil Storage to Home








We wobble back to the boat with our sea legs and head out once again down river to Lock 24. The wind has picked up and so have the waves. The gates open again without a wait and we bounce our way into the lock. Being to rough inside to tie off, I maintain “the Belle” in between the walls as the water begins to drop. Gator is keeping the canoe from slamming into the boat. It is now that we hold our breath counting the minutes until we see the southern gates begin to open. The blast of the lock horn tells us we may proceed through the gates. Usually, the horn will catch us by surprise…it is quite loud.


Lock # 24









As we are flushed out into the channel once again (see I used a different verb this time) the town of Clarksville, Missouri is waiting patient

Clarksville, Missouri

ly for us, beckoning us to stop, get fuel, ice and whatever else we may need. There is a crowd of teens hanging out at the dock as we pass by and even though we are good with fuel, I make a U-turn and head for the dock. We are at a place on the river where opportunities to stop are becoming less frequent so topping off the fuel is a prudent move. As we approach the dock the teens gather their stuff and walk away, I guess our craft scared them away.





I walk up to the local boaters club (all these little towns have their private boat clubs) to ask for some ice, there are no fuel pumps visible. The gentlemen inside hop up to assist and mentioning our quest, I enquire about fuel down river and water levels. One of the gentleman, Bill, offers to drive me up to the gas station and fill up our tanks. I accept and after loading up our empties, we’re off to the pumps. This is the kind of assistance we have come to accept along the river, it just seems to be the way folks are along the Mississippi.







Bill brings me back to the dock, we unload the fuel and ice and we thank him immensley, he doesn’t accept my offer of money, no one has……’s just the way.

Off again into the wild blue yonder, we travel along on smooth waters. Along the way I set up the cook stove and boil some water for a Mountain House meal, just add water. We eat our meal, clean up and restowe the stove. Up ahead is lock # 25. We’re in and out and just below the lock we see a long dock on the Illinois side of the river. This could be our haven for the night. We pull in about 7PM, tie off an d walk up to what looks like a tiki bar. come to think of it, this is the place Tom and I stopped back in 2009. It’s called “Cedar Hill Resort,” a combination restaurant/guest house/tiki hut. It is here we met Alan Morgan in 2009, a guy who traveled the length of the Mississippi back in the day on a 42 foot home-built wooden craft. He was a neat guy to chat with. So, as Gator and I sat down and ordered a beverage, I asked the waitress if she knew of this guy. She did not but another guy sitting at the bar overheard my questions and turned to me saying “you’re talking about my dad and he’s standing right over there.” Wow, what karma…….he hollard at his dad who walked over and we just kinda picked up where we left off. They all came down to “the Belle” and signed her before leaving on their boat, he lives down river about 8 miles.

Alan Morgan and Family









Thank God we’re not rocking









The “Crew”









Gator and I sit out on the dock for a while and talk as we do this time of night. It’ s a good time to be on the river. You know the rest of the story….sleeeeeep.



One Response to “Sept. 8, 2012”

  1. tcflykat Says:

    Hi Gator and River Rat… Sorry I forgot your river name…
    Nice pics! Looking forward to see the videos some day.

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