Day 12, June 14 Staunton, IL to Webster Groves, MO 58 miles Total Miles. 642
Weather: Hot 95 degrees, sunny and slight headwind
We got started a little later today because we were meeting a reporter in the Town of Edwardsville, IL to do a story on us for the Edwardsville Intelligencer. We planned to meet him at 9:00 am and only had 18 miles to cover to get there. The ride was really nice and pretty much all on the MCT Quercus Grove Trail. Madison County builds and maintains the trail system and they have done a great job.
We got to Edwardsville just on time and spent about a half hour with Steve Harrell and his photographer- Zachery. Steve had some great questions and even contacted us after the fact to see if we would Skype in to a journalism class he is teaching at the local college. He thought it would be great for them to hear about our adventure, ask questions and then write an article about it. The class is on August – we told him that should work!!
After breakfast in Edwardsville we hopped on the bicycle to head to the St Louis area. We crossed into Missouri on the Chain of Rocks Bridge – the bridge was built in 1929 to accommodate the increased traffic due to Route 66. The bridge has a 22% bend in it due to the limited navigable river channels. It was closed in 1968 and scheduled for demolition in 1975. Luckily the price for scrap metal was low at the time and the bridge remained standing. In 1999 a local regional bicycle group lobbied to open it as a bicycle and pedestrian bridge and the mile long bridge has been available for bicycle and pedestrian use ever since.
This time we entered St Louis, MO from the north on the Riverfront Trail, which dropped us right at the Arch. It was cool to come in this way and see another area of St Louis. It also is amazing how much work they have completed on the Riverfront Trail just since last year, it looks great.
We then headed west of the city for the night. Our plans were to get to the city and then decided where to stay and get a room for the night. Not a great idea – little did we know that there was a huge convention going on and a Cardinal Baseball game and every room within a 45 mile radius of St Louis was booked and there are no campgrounds – oh oh!!
Luckily we had been planning to see Peter’s cousin Carol and possibly his Aunt Lolly. So we contacted Carol and she was kind enough to take in a couple of weary bicyclists for the night. Thank goodness – if she would not have been able to we don’t know where we would have stayed and maybe would not have had the energy or time to get far enough out of town to find a room or campground. So we have learned a lesson to plan ahead a bit better.
I have one more day to put up – will do it tomorrow – we are taking the day off – six long days in the heat is plenty. We are going to the Meramec Caverns near Stanton, MO and check them out. It will be 60 degrees in the cave which well feel great.
More picture and videos tomorrow. Special thanks to our sponsor Verizon for the Jet Pack that allows us to put the pictures and video in our blog.