Nearly anytime I find myself outdoors, I find myself happy. It can be tending the garden, walking my dogs, hiking a trail, checking trail cams, sitting in a blind, or casting a fly. However, one place is a little more special than most, special enough that I can call it my favorite. Sparkling aqua water, bluffs, caves, springs, dense forests, towering pines, sandbars perfect for camping, clean cold water, wild trout and some great memories are why I call the Eleven Point River my favorite place.
I’ve been meaning to post this OBN writing/photo prompt for some time now, but school, exploring Fort Collins and the move have had me quite busy. A phone conversation last night made me want to visit the Eleven Point as soon as possible. Perhaps a little of that longing comes from missing my friends, the good times we had and all the memories we make. Unfortunately, making a weekend visit to southern Missouri is a bit impossible, so I thought I would revisit my memories. Any words I may type would not give this wondrous river its proper due. From the minute we arrived to the Greer campground for the first time, I knew this would be a place of special mystique and one we would return to time and time again. Greer Spring is a wonder to behold, a feast for every sense. In fact, I chose the background of this blog because it reminded me of Greer Spring.
All of us have been on countless float trips, a lot of them taking place on the Niangua. YUCK! I can’t believe we missed out on the Eleven Point for all those years. After our first float, we all agreed, the Eleven Point was THE Missouri float. Not only is the river incredible, the service from the family owned canoe rental place is some of the best customer service found anywhere. Jerry and his family were always accommodating and always on time.
Besides all the natural appeal of this magnificent place, memories of time spent with our best friends, Brooke and Matt, help put the Eleven Point in the top spot on my list. Reminiscing here for a moment….Brooke and I with all our poison ivy, us girls catching our first trout, Brooke fishing with a broken pole, Matt being ever patient with all of us and providing endless laughs and genius ideas, fog rolling down the river, B&M’s riverside ribeyes, Paddle, giggles with Richard, I mean, Jerry, and his grandson, Brooke repeating herself, taking a skinny dip in the spring, Dustin forgetting all fishing supplies, Dustin’s brush with a water moccasin, flooding waders, nights by the campfire, tornado warnings, Brooke showering in the rain and a non-alcoholic Coors from years past. My smile as I type this is turning into laughter; so many more memories…
The only bad thing I can say is the Eleven Point is so far away. Darn the move! Our list of things we want to do at the Eleven Point is long, and now it won’t be an annual pilgrimage like we thought it would be just last April when we made our second trip. It is amazing how life changes so quickly. Brooke and Matt plan to return this year and knock another thing off the Eleven Point bucket list, a float and hike. Trails abound in this area, and most of them lie in National Forest lands. Irish Wilderness anyone? I can’t wait for their trip so I can live vicariously through their photos and stories.
I know we have so many more places to visit, all of which will be spectacular, but the Eleven Point is a place that holds its own special mystique to me.