Monday, October 11, 2010

Rocheport, Missouri

Rocheport is part of the Columbia, Missouri metropolitan statistical area. Clark, of the Lewis and Clark expedition, made mention of the area in his journal when he visited there on June 7, 1804. Besides writing of the flora and fauna at this convergence of  Moniteau Creek and the Missouri River, he noted native pictographs on the river bluffs. By 1875 Rocheport was one of Boone County's main river ports on the Missouri River. Today Rocheport is a small river town, noted mainly for being the trail head near the middle of the Katy Trail. My sisters and I drove over there Saturday from Columbia to walk that trail. Some of you, not being from Missouri, may need a clarification as to what the Katy Trail is. It is a 225 mile-long bike path which stretches across the state of Missouri. It used to be the railway line for the Kansas, Missouri, and Texas. Saturday we saw on the trail an old marker of this railway on a river bluff along the trail.
The initials on the wall are MKT, which is how the current Katy Trail received its name. Along the part of the trail, which we hiked Saturday, we also saw an old bunker built into the rock wall. It was a former explosive storage room for the railroad.
 We had a beautiful warm fall day to walk the trail. On our left side we could view the tall river bluffs rising up from the trail, and to our right we had the Missouri river. Many people, besides us, were out either hiking or biking along the trail.  Fall colors in this area are not very vibrant yet, as you may note in the picture below.
 After our hike we were ready for lunch and a glass of wine. We drove over to the Les Bourgeois Winery where we were able to enjoy a spectacular bluff-top view of the Missouri River while eating our lunch.
 Shortly after we had purchased our lunch the winery became quite busy. People were flowing in from Columbia sporting the Missouri Tiger caps and shirts. A football game was the big happening later that afternoon between Missouri University and Colorado. Today, Monday, John and I are moving east to Virginia.

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