Something different

Last week we had a couple of days off from the bakery and decided to take a couple of day trips. The first was on a clear, sunny day even though that didn't really matter...


...as we were headed southwest an hour or so to Meramec Caverns. I had been there as a child and my wife had never been, so to Stanton MO we drove.


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Since a portion of the cave was still closed due to high levels of an unsafe gas, we had a shorter experience than we expected, but it was still a nice change of pace.



I've been in natural caves a couple of times before, and although I understand the importance of pouring concrete and adding railings to make things safe for visitors -- not to mention the addition of lights -- I would have liked less "interference" here.



Also, just because there is a room that looks very much like a theater, with a curtain, orchestra pit, and balcony...


...that doesn't mean that showing a movie there is a good idea. There's a reason they open the curtains at movie theaters before the movie starts. (And I'm not just sour because we got yelled at for walking toward the exit unaccompanied after the guide said "that ends the tour")


The next day we headed north, taking the scenic route instead of the highway. Our destination was Hannibal MO, boyhood home of Mark Twain.

Looking east into Illinois

Along the way there were a couple of nice scenic views of the Mississippi from the top of hills. (If you don't know, the Mississippi is the boundary between hilly Missouri and mostly-flat Illinois.)

Looking south-southeast

You don't get a good sense of the height from these photos. There's quite a steep drop in front of us!

This trip that went through Clarksville, Louisiana, and other smaller towns ended up being all about the drive...


...due to the intense storms that we encountered as we got near the end of our 2-hour adventure:


I love seeing cloud formations like this, but I have to admit they are less enjoyable when you're driving right into them. The rain limited what we could do in Hannibal, but we already agreed that a return trip was in our future!


The rest of our break was spent enjoying the couch and some Netflix. Didn't think you needed any photos of that!

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chavliness  – (July 11, 2016 at 9:50 AM)  

Awesome shots of the caves, except for the multi colored one :-) The scenes of the river are much less claustrophobic. They seem to be void of any sign of human interference as far as the eye can see. Its probably what the first americans saw when they gazed over the river. Very cool.

danger garden  – (July 11, 2016 at 10:51 AM)  

Ugh. Some of those cave effects were definitely "what were they thinking" moments.

karen gimson  – (July 11, 2016 at 11:00 AM)  

Lovely views of the river. I saw similar caves in China with the same garish lights. Most odd. thanks for sharing

Mark and Gaz  – (July 11, 2016 at 11:46 AM)  

Looks spectacular but I agree with you, less interference would have been better.

Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (July 11, 2016 at 6:00 PM)  

FANTASTIC destinations. I love caves and would totally make the effort to see Meramec Caverns.

Your storm photos from your trip to Hannibal are something else! They remind me of the work of photographer Camille Seaman.

Rock rose  – (July 12, 2016 at 5:33 AM)  

Caves are always wondrous places to visit but I am wondering why we never did visit this one when we lived so close. We have caves here which I have never visited. Maybe it is having been to Carlsbad. Tough to beat. As to those midwest storms-they scared me to death.

outlawgardener  – (July 13, 2016 at 11:13 AM)  

You're kidding - a movie projected on the wall? Gross. The rock formations are stunning on their own and the colored lights are gilding the lily a bit.

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