Upper Missouri NWSR Canoe Trip 2009


Day Five

After catching an extra few hours' sleep, we awoke to a drenched and muddy campsite. All the gear was dry thankfully, but our firewood was soaked. This meant cooking our last "real" breakfast on the little gas stoves, but eggs, veggies, bacon, and English muffins turned out great. We used the leftover bacon to make bacon and cheese smawiches for lunch, and discovered that our idea of the appropriate time of the morning to do things was not the norm. We were the last overnighters to push off at 11:30 (gaining an hour a day though!) after taking this last opportunity to replenish our water supply from an actual faucet.
The weather had cleared up beautifully by now and we were glad of our decision to wait out the rain instead of packing up a bunch of wet gear! The sky was full of some giant version of Dutch "schaapjeswolken" and were were grateful for the alternating moments of sun and shade.
We saw many more fine looking Angus which we duly mooed at again, and heard rattlesnakes on the bank. One of the guys we had met at the beginning of the trip had mentioned that they could swim - of this we had not been aware. He said that they had to thwack one with a paddle and that he was about to go for his pistol, so I decided that a sidearm was in order while hiking from now on.
We stopped once or twice more for wood and scored the biggest pile to date, which allowed us both to fashion recliners in the canoe; I had constructed one for myself the previous day. Suddenly, farmland gave way to the impressive White Cliffs area and we were in the country we had come to see!
We stopped at Monroe Island, took some pictures, and had a smoke. I enjoyed the last of the three PBRs that dad had bartered against the remaining can of Diet Coke. All four cans had been hanging off the side of our canoe in the water as our cooler was now just a box. Monroe Island would have made a stunning and secluded campsite and was blessed with a rock fire ring, but it was too early to stop for the night and dad wanted to stop somewhere with an actual toilet, so we continued the last two miles to Eagle Creek, floating lazily most of the way.
We arrived to find our best campsite so far. Shortly after we set up camp, a gaggle of idiots set up next to us, and some counselor type uttered, no shouted, the unholy and unforgivable words "ARE WE HAPPY CAMPERS?!" to which the flock lustily responded "YEAH! WOO!" Dad and I later discussed under which circumstances such a thing would be acceptable and agreed that there were none imaginable.
After a yummy dinner of garlic pasta shells with sauteed yellow pepper and albacore steak, followed by pears & applesauce with trail mix, we went for a "stroll" that turned into a climb up a steep hillside and onto an outcrop that yielded the most amazing views of campground, river, and surroundings.
We finished the evening as usual with whiskey and a roaring fire, with a nice bath in the river in between. It felt great to be clean(ish) again!

Jacob Saunders | Create Your Badge
Jacob Saunders