A time capsule - Two Far 2018 - Trailing through the Rust Belt - CycleBlaze

A time capsule

Our first 3 days on the Katy trail were north of the Missouri River until we crossed over the river to get to Boonville. Today the trail took us well south of the river, into the edge of the Ozark region.

It's a rail line, so there are no steep hills, but it felt like we were constantly on a 1 - 3% grade all day today. We crossed a lot of bridges today and went through several cuts.

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A very simple bridge design. Just lay down a giant pipe and call it a day.
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We checked the sandstone walls of some of the cuts, but didn't find any fossils.

The trail surface was in much worse repair in this section of the trail, perhaps because of the hills, or maybe because of the soil type, or maybe because they have had more rain.

Cherries! Living off the land.
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An old MKT signal. There were no trains on this section of the line today.
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It was hot today. We were grateful that almost all of the trail was shaded by the tree canopy today. There was one exception, an open area that was welcome by half of team A, but not so much by the other half.

The open area came right after we reached the high point of the trail - 955 feet above sea level. Signage near the high point revealed that the MKT line played a role in restoring a bit of prarie. At one time this area (and most of the central US) was open prarie. The land is so fertile that most of the prarie has been cleared for farming. In other places the prarie has been replaced by forests because fires have been suppressed. Although most of the trail was well shaded by forests today, the small section of open land we passed through once predominated.

The MKT had a 100 foot wide right of way, even though the rail line only used 15-20 feet of that space. The rest of the right of way was not plowed and soon filled in with invasive trees like the mulberries and red cedar we have been enjoying. When the Missouri department of conservation did controlled burns to clear away the trees, prarie seeds that had been dorment in the soil for over a century germinated in the strip of land along the rail line.

Alain was thrilled that these plants had reappeared after being absent for a century. The MKT corridor was like a time capsule. Viktoriya wanted the shade of the trees.
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I'll end with a question. In every state we have passed through on this trip we have seen flags that look like American flags, but the red stripes are black or blue. We haven't seen these in South Florida. Can someone tell us what they are?

What is this mysterious flag?
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Nicholas SmithThe flag is for "Blue Lives Matter".
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1 year ago

 

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Gail CullinanThe flag is called the Thin Blue line flag. It represents the officer and the insurmountable odds they face and it also reflects on those that were lost in enforcing the law. i got this from googling. Safe travels
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1 year ago
Alain AbbateTo Gail CullinanThank you Gail, it's good to know what we have been looking at and good to know first responders are held in high esteem.
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1 year ago
Rich McKayAnd if you see one that has a red line instead of the blue, it's for the firefighters (Thin Red Line).
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1 year ago