Tuesday, June 21, 2022

2022 Louisiana Trip, Day 1- 2022 Louisiana Trip, Day 1 – Warrensburg to Malvern.


2022 Louisiana Trip, Day 1 – Tuesday, June 21st

Yes, I'm on the road again, for a week this time, to a belated 60th Lake Charles High School reunion. I woke up early this morning, so I was on the road by 0630. The first tidbit? A bald eagle on the ground in a yard on MO-13 near SE 950 road. Further south, the old grocery store north of Osceola (across 13 from Osceola Cheese) is now the “Amish Trading Post” - we used to stop at the store for ice cream. Gas from here south was $4.59.

Took a short cut off of 13 to H Hwy, aka North Glenstone, then got onto I-44 to US-65 (for the next 180 miles). Branson has sure built up since my last time in the area. 65 is now 4-lane all the way thru Harrison, site of a nice rest area and Welcome Center. Once I hit the curvy & hilly 2-lane area, I saw large patches of butterfly milkweed along the roadsides. The road crosses the Buffalo National Scenic River at Silver Hill; the river was full of canoes.

This whole section is scenic, but there were few places to pull off for photos of mountain panoramas. Gas prices down here really beat those in Missouri, typically around $4.30, with one station in Leslie down to $4.09. A barn sported a roof-side sign urging travelers to “See Arkansas' Natural Bridge” - only 13 miles. I looked for a cafe for lunch, but ended up at a DQ in Greenbrier.

My next 65 miles were on Interstates – I-40, 430 and 30 – all going 75 mph and up. As a result, I got to Malvern at 1330, not expecting my room to be ready. It wasn't. I moved up one of tomorrow's activities and visited Jenkins Ferry State Park, which commemorates the last battle of Steele's Camden expedition. The area is all forested bottomland, and the Saline River was at flood during the battle. Steele escaped, but had to burn all his supplies. Tomorrow I'll visit other key places in that disastrous (for the Yankees)

                                                View of the Saline

The uplands are heavily wooded, mostly pines in uniform stands of varying ages. Lots of lumber yards, which seem to specialize in power poles and fence posts. Other firms include Ribbet Power Coating (do if frogs work there?), and Acme Bricks (do they supply old Wile E. Coyote?).

Supper at a BBQ place and try for an early bedtime. Roads for the day: MO-Y, MO-13, MO-WW, MO-H, US-65, I-40, I-430, I-30, US-270, AR-291, AR-46, AR-229, and back on US-270.

For the day (& the trip) 420.4 miles. Tomorrow: assorted roads to Alexandria, LA.

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