April 22:  Fair skies, no wind, and fairly easy going.  Lots of wildlife
                   today: beaver, deer, turkey, geese, ducks, turtles and a
                   water snake.

  April 23:  Easter - A dull, cool, overcast day with periods of light rain,
                   but no wind and an ideal day for paddling.  I put in my first
                   full 8-hour day, and made20+ miles for the first time.  I
                   hadn't expected to be able to make such good time this
                   early in the expedition, and I'm encouraged by the progress
                   I'm making.  I have a reasonable chance of making it to the 
                   Continental Divide before snow.

                       Dredging on the Missouri river.

  April 24:  Windy in the morning (in my face, of course), but the wind
                   subsided by mid-morning.  I saw some large black birds on
                   the river bank that looked like vultures, and got a bit
                   apprehensive when they followed me for a while.  Do they
                   know something I don't?  A tug and barge passed me today
                   going upstream, and the wake nearly washed me up onto
                   the bank.  I'm starting to look forward to Lexington and rest.

  April 25:  Another 20+ mile day, my third in a row.  It's amazing how
                   much difference it makes not having a wind in my face.  I
                   saw two deer on the bank today who stared at me for the
                   longest time before they finally bolted.  They had the same 
                   look most people have when they see me: who is this guy in 
                   a kayak, and why on earth is he paddling upstream?

                   The wind stirs up the river

  April 26:  Made 22 miles today - sunny and mild weather with no wind.
                   A catfish almost jumped in my lap this morning.  I often
                   startle them when I'm cruising along the river bank.  The one
                   I surprised this morning leapt the wrong way, conking his 
                   head on the side of my kayak.
                   Comfortably survived the first heavy overnight rainfall.

  April 27:  A grueling day with a harrowing experience.  I faced 30+ mph
                   winds, a stronger than usual current, and particularly
                   troublesome dikes.  While trying to shoot through the gap of
                   one of them, my bow glanced off a submerged rock that I
                   couldn't anticipate because the wind had churned up the 
                   surface so much.  I got turned sideways in the middle of the
                   gap, and then got wedged in that position between two rocks.
                   As I frantically tried to free myself, the current began washing 
                   over the side of the kayak, and it seemed only a matter of 
                   moments before it would capsize.  I wasn't worried about 
                   drowning, but I was afraid I was going to lose a lot, if not all, 
                   of my gear.  Fortunately, I freed myself in time, was washed 
                   back down, and took the wide route around the dike on my
                   second try.  Thanks God I made Lexington today!

                 Parked on the riverbank for a
                                    brief respite

  April 28:  A rest day in Lexington, Missouri where everyone I met was
                   friendly, helpful and supportive of my project.  Kelly of the
                   Lexington News interviewed me, and took my picture with the
                   kayak.  I did a load of laundry - much needed - ate lots of rich
                   food, and found the necessary supplies.  The bed & breakfast
                   I stayed in on Main St. was fabulous, with a huge four-poster
                   bed that I practically needed a step ladder to climb into.

                    Click here for days 22-28 of Richard's journal