Trout fishing and the Midnight Ramble - 08/09/08

Friday we spent the weekend in Montaug State Park in Missouri, about 120 miles south-west from St. Louis. Drove down on Friday and came back Sunday. The purpose of the trip, besides spending some time together, was trout fishing. The state park has a trout stream that is stocked with fish from a fish hatchery that is also inside the park. The stream where the trout live is about 2-3 feet deep and flows pretty smoothly. It’s possible to fish from the banks but most people wade into the stream to try to find the best spot. Randy and I did, too; that was where waders would have come in very handy - that water was cold! We both used regular fishing poles and fishing flies. Trout, apparently, don’t eat worms. However, they weren’t interested in our fishing flies either because neither one of us got a bite. Later Randy used his new trout fishing pole. The fishing line is four lines of different thickness, with the strongest line at the reel and the thinnest line at the hook. So you have a strong line at the reel, which ties onto a thinner line, which ties onto a thinner line, which ties onto a very thin line. And at the end of the very thin line you put a very tiny fishing fly, which is supposed to look like a very tiny bug. And you flick that long line over the water, where the light weight of the very thin line lets you get it pretty far out into the stream. But the trout still weren’t impressed and we did not have trout for dinner. We had a great dinner though – hot dogs cooked over a campfire, corn on the cob, and s’mores. Can hardly beat that! 

For some reason that is not clear to me now, Randy and I signed up for the “Moonlight Ramble” bike ride in St. Louis. The ride is literally done in the moonlight – it starts at one minute after midnight, in the wee hours of Sunday morning. It’s a 17 mile ride but we bicycled a mile from our RV the starting point and back at the end of the ride, so it was more like 19 miles for us. Aaron and Dezina rode it also, so Saturday evening they came over to our place and we all went out to dinner together before the ride. We found a nice place called the Stables and had some really good pizza. Then around 10 pm we went downtown where the ride starts. The ride has occurred every year for about 45 years, so it’s pretty famous in St. Louis. There were lots of vendors so we walked around, looking at bike stuff, and I started getting very, very tired. I’m used to going to bed around 9! Around 11:45 pm we got back on our bikes and wheeled over to the starting point. This year there were about 10,000 bikers in the ride, so although the ride officially started at midnight, the organizers started groups of people off separately to avoid a pile-up. We were in about the 5th group to get to go, so we didn’t actually start the bike ride until 00:30 am on Sunday morning. The route was mostly a big loop - we rode through North St. Louis, went west to Forrest Park, and then back downtown. The ride is supposed to be pretty flat, and I guess it was, mostly. But there were a few hills, and one hill I just couldn’t get up. I had to stop and walk the bike up.  Randy could bike up, of course, but he waited for me at all the hills to be sure I was OK. We were biking in the main streets the whole time. The roads were all well lit, and there wasn’t any danger because there is safety in numbers - and 10,000 is a pretty big number. Plus there were police cars at most intersections to be sure there were no accidents. We finished the race by 2:00 am, so we were riding 1 ½ hours. Randy could have done it faster but he waited for me and Dezina. Then we biked back to the RV park where Aaron and Dezina had left their car. Randy needed to be at church in the morning because he writes the church’s checks (payroll, bills, etc). So we got a few hours of sleep, then got up and went to church.  But later that day I took a long nap!

Church Baptism

We attended the Ivy Heights annual picnic. Their picnic isn't just lunch, they take the whole afternoon. It was at a lake-side park with lots of activities like canoes, water trampoline, volleyball, a waterside and for the bid kids, paddle-boats. Those white legs of mine practically glow!
Someone cooked hot dogs and hamburgers and everyone else brought a dish (Randy brought a chili-and-cheese dish). And two people who attend our church were baptized in the lake. What a lovely day!