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Monday, June 23, 2008

Back from the Katy Trail

As you can see, the Missouri River keeps on rolling along -- albeit a bit higher than normal -- along the Katy Trail.

Yes, I did ride the Katy Trail last week. I hope to have the full article up on the Web site later this week, but here's a brief summary.

In some ways, it was the kind of ride where everything that could go wrong did. For example, I wasn't happy to find out that when I got to Hermann, Mo., last Monday that I had left my towel and comb at home. Ugh.

At our final camping spot in Liberty Park in Sedalia, a heavy thunderstorm blew through town and knocked down my tent, drenching everything in it.

And yet, it was a rewarding ride. The Missouri Department of Natural Resources does a first-rate job of supporting cyclists, and it's hard to top the Katy Trail for scenery in this part of the world. The bluffs near Augusta and Rocheport are very scenic, but I also found the rolling plains between Sedalia and Clinton rewarding as well.

Flooding on the Missouri River did force a couple of detours, as I expected, but the flooding on the Missouri is nothing like the flooding on the Mississippi right now.

I really didn't have the opportunity to find Internet access during the trip, and that was a blessing in disguise. I found I really needed to take a break from the Internet, e-mail and blogging. I spent way too much time on this computer this spring because of organizing work I did for the Tour de Stooges and The Gerry Frierdich Road to Recovery Bicycle Ride, and it was great to spend time on a bike!

My mountain bike made it through the trail OK, although I probably would have been happier on a lighter hybrid or at least with less-aggressive mountain bike tires on the crushed limestone surface on the Katy Trail. I do now have a name for my mountain bike, a Raleigh -- Behemoth!

Another reason I was glad I didn't access e-mail or the Internet last week was because the parent company of the Belleville News-Democrat, McClatchy Newspapers, announced that it was eliminating 1,400 jobs nationwide through layoffs, voluntary departures and attrition. The News-Democrat will be cutting 12 jobs. I am grateful none of them are in our newsroom, but I feel for those who will lose jobs in other departments.

It is discomforting when you think about the troubled state of the newspaper industry. Recently, fellow bicycle blogger and journalist Jill Homer reported in her Up in Alaska blog that her newspaper in Juneau, Alaska, is indefinitely cutting retirement benefits.

Yes, a week away from reality did do me a lot of good!

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Roger 1 comments links to this post 11:51 AM

Welcome back Roger...!

It was great to see you on Saturday at June Jam too.

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