Paddling the Big Niangua River Trail

The Big Niangua River Trail is a tour of points beginning near the spring at Ha Ha Tonka State Park and ending along the larger portion of the Niangua River. It’s slightly confusing, because even though the flow of water moves toward Ha Ha Tonka, and theoretically, one would end there, the points start at the park with letter A, and go all the way to T at Whistle Bridge, just over 13 miles away.

A Weekend Adventure at Mark Twain Lake

We drove to the boat ramp on Highway U, unloaded the kayaks without any issues, and paddled out onto the glistening water. The sun gleamed in a clear blue sky, and I shed layers as the temperatures rose. Laura was giddy observing the flocks of birds perched in their respective cliques along the water’s surface.

Our Adventure Elopement Story

I had known long before we were engaged that I didn’t want a traditional wedding. We had both been married before, and the thought of saying “I Do” with hundreds of eyes staring us down was just too much pressure. Been there… got the t-shirt.

Instead, I wanted to do something intimate… something epic.

Thanks to Instagram and other friends who had broken the traditional mold, I began falling in love with the idea of an “adventure elopement.”

Camping at Onondaga Cave State Park

When you’ve waited all year to go camping, and the forecast promises some cool September crispness, you can’t help but get a little bit excited. Thoughts of snuggling up by a cozy campfire, floating down a river without the crazy summer crowds, enjoying a peaceful campground in off-peak season, watching the leaves start to change… I mean, if we’re being honest, my expectations were soaring pretty high.

So, you can imagine how utterly annoyed I was as my husband and I arrived at the campground at Onondaga Cave State Park to realize…