The visit to Ozark Scenic Riverways began with a flight to St. Louis where we stopped to visit the Jefferson Expansion Memorial. It was great to see alumnus Dan Sweeney and to get some feedback on the changes we’ve made to the program. Then Junior (Pro)Ranger Finn and I went up the Arch and completed the junior ranger programs at both the Arch and the Old Courthouse. We learned from some of the rangers that there was another local park, Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site, located on our way out of town. We stopped by there and toured the home and farm of Ulysses S. Grant and earned a third junior ranger badge before (a late) lunch. Score!!
|Ready to tour the park by canoe|
|Weiland, Klejmont and Johnson|
|Entering Round Spring Cave|
After lunch, we headed to the Upper Current District to tour the Round Spring Cave. Unfortunately this is the only open cave in the park due to White Nose Syndrome which is affecting the bat population. The inside of the cave is about 58 degrees year around, which was a welcome respite from the heat index of over 100 degrees outside! We finished the evening with a visit to a Van Buren institution, The Jolly Cone, for a cold treat!
|Disinfecting shoes to prevent the spread of White Noise Syndrome|
|Another day, another badge|
|Bob the cat and Finn the junior ranger|
Then stopped by the Fire Cache while we waited to see if the storm was going to pass. While we were there, we tested out some equipment.
|Testing out the equipment|
The rain stopped so we paid a visit to Alley Mill where we got to check out the old flour mill’s working equipment. Maintenance was removing a damaged tree nearby so we didn’t get to see the turbine in action.
|Grinding by hand|