Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Katy Trail

Woke up today, biked 40 miles to the Katy Trail. Nothing spectacular about the ride, it was really easy. I got to the Katy Trail and got really moody right when I got on it. I didn't like it at first. I was going to find a place with wireless to re change my route. (If you don't know, the Katy trail is a Rail-to-Trail bike path across the state of MO. It is an old railroad grade, now covered in crushed limestone, that traverses the entire state.) I ended up really enjoying the ride. It was a cool day, and I was averaging about 14 miles per hour. The Katy trail has lots of beautiful views of the Missouri River, and is covered in huge trees, with lots of tunnels. I passed through this tunnel called the Martin Tunnel. The first half was stone blocks, the second half looked hand carved. It was crazy huge.

I met a guy named Bruce while riding. We rode for an hour together just talking. It was really cool getting to talk to a fellow biker, and hearing what he had to say on life. He was a nice guy. He is training right now to do the Katy trail in one day. It is 240-ish miles. That is a really long day.

The highlight of my day came at the end. I was really tired when I reached Mokane, MO. I hit their little section on the Katy trail, and there were a ton of people out in the streets of little downtown Mokane. I pulled up the main street to grab a bite for dinner and there was a huge car show. Tons and tons of old cars. More importantly than the car show was the free fish fry they were having. I talked to some old guys, and they said to go to work on the 6 tables worth of food. So I did. Fried catfish has never tasted so good. I probably ate a pound of catfish alone. It was awesome. They would just bring it out in batches on a cardboard box lid. And people would hurry up and grab it, then you would have to wait for the next batch. It was community donated, so I ate a little something from everywhere.

The top three things there. The fish. This spinach-cheese dip which melted my face. And the best blackberry pie I have ever had. The best PIE i have ever had really. It was the most delicious pie I have ever put in my mouth. I couldn't get over it.

This lady came over to talk to me for a while. This was funny. She found out about my bike trip, that I was 21, and a student. She says, "follow me, I am going to introduce you to some college girls." That just made me laugh. She introduced me to her daughter and daughter's friend. Good thing she did too. Because of that I found out the route I was going to take was flooded in Missouri. They helped me figure out a better way to get across the Mississippi. So they saved me almost three days of extra riding. They were really nice also. Kind of country, which I miss. Can't wait to be back in Clemson.

The town of Mokane was going crazy right when I left it. I don't think the Sheriff makes it out to Mokane very often. It is a town of like 70 people. They were racing down the center of town like it was a drag strip. Tons and tons of old muscle cars. It was awesome.

I felt great after dinner, so I cranked out another 10 miles before bed. I found a little camping spot in Portland, MO for the night. I am right above the Missouri River, and the river is the same color as the sky. It is a mix of pink and baby blue. It looks like a river of cotton candy.

115 miles for the day.

I would love some cotton candy right now.

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