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gadfly homepage on the road home notes on places last contact: 5/2010 first contact: 5/1991

MO Trip Stats (6/10):


Counties visited: 40

Best county: St. Louis

Last visited: 8/2007

Town visited most: Saint Louis

Places slept in: St. Louis, Sunset Hills, Maryland Hts. (many times), Eureka, Ozark, Babler SP (tent), Ste. Genevieve, Earth City, St. Charles, St. Joseph

Most impressive town: Saint Louis

Least impressive town: Joplin

Biggest town: St. Louis

Most scenic area: the hills known as the Missouri Rhineland on the lower Missouri River

Most scenic spot: the lawn of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial

Three Words: classy, beautiful, parochial

State Animal: horse

Least Favorite Animals: St. Louis Cardinals

Biggest storm: 7/06 storm that devastated St. Louis- the Cards still finished their game

Best food: steakhouse in Grandview across from the fire station

Best ballpark: the old Busch Stadium

Road Trips: lost count, includes Cowboy Trip, Southland Trip, etc.


Neighboring States: KS, TN, IL, KY, NE, OK, IA


Major passes: Horizontal: I-70 Corridor. Completely passed through state in 1995 with father from St. Louis to Kansas City and back again. Ozark Sideroads. Took combo of state roads and U.S. highways across state from Joplin to St. Louis.


Mississippi Crossed: I-270 @ Granite City, IL; I-55 @ St. Louis (about 13x); MO-51 @ Chester, IL; US-62 @ Cairo, IL; I-57 @ Cairo, IL; US-412 @ Caruthersville, IL-146 @ Cape Girardeau


Great Drives: Market Street in St. Louis; MO-94 along the Missouri River


Future Plans: I want to explore the Ozark caves and Elephant SP when I have more time.


Heroes: Bar none, the greatest hero is  the pilot/poet of Hannibal, Mark Twain. Second to them are the explorers Lewis & Clark, who lived the state motto: "Show me." Other local heroes include local ice-cream shop owner Harry Truman of Independence and U.S. Grant, whose farm near St. Louis still stands. Daniel Boone was buried in Warren County before being removed. The legacy of the Germans in the St. Louis area is seen in the breweries and wineries of the metro area. The leagacy of the founding French is evident in places like Ste. Genevieve.

First Contact: In 1991, my family boarded a United flight to spend some time in St. Louis. We landed at Lambert Field and stayed at the posh Union Station on Market Street. We visited all the usual sites and remember having a perfect time with my mother and father at the zoo, the Bowling Hall of Fame, Busch Stadium, and just driving around the strange city. These happy childhood memories led me back to St. Louis many times and it has become one of my favorite hiding places. I have found that Missouri exides a certain charm. It is filled with friendly faces from Independence to the levees of the Mississippi.

St. Louis Co. (5/1991)

Saint Louis. This is a diverse, world-class city that I frequently visit in all seasons. Forest Park, surrounded by old Southern mansions, contains the greatest zoo in the world and a fine art museum. Market Street and Union Station offer exciting sites and opportunities to talk to goldfish. (Long story.) Market Street ends at the Gateway Arch: a marvel of engineering, a beautiful park, and a fitting tribute to the opening of the West. The levee area is full of music. The weather is always decent. The food is always good. Only disadvantage is that it is the home of the evil Cardinals. Maryland Hts. Creve Couer. Clayton. Chesterfield. Excellent mall here. Wildwood. Horses surround mansions in the hilly Missouri River valley. Babler SP, here, has a perfectly maintained campground. Bellefontaine Neighbors. Kirkwood. Sunset Hills. Eureka. The Ozark rises up along the road here. Allenton. Home of the most comfortable of all Six Flags parks.

St. Charles Co. (5/1991)

St. Charles. The 18th century settlement stands in many places with cobblestone streets. Matson. Defiance. A beautiful stretch of MO-94 crosses the hills of the Missouri River valley. Almost ran out of gas here. Wentzville.

Platte Co. (8/1992)

Kansas City. Landed by plane in 1992 with Aunt Peg. I don't remember much of the Missouri side of this city except for my enjoyment of the burgers at Winstead's. Maybe my priorities are off.

Jackson Co. (8/1992)

Kansas City. Watched the Bears lose to the Chiefs and Joe Montana at the sports complex here. Grandview. Seemed like a nice little town with memorable steaks and a neat little firehouse. Independence. A sharp suburb, home of the memorable Harry Truman Library and burial site.

Clay Co. (8/1992)

Liberty. It has been some time, but I remember being awe-struck by the elaborate furnishings of the Jesse James jail cell in this one-time frontier post.

Clinton Co. (8/1992)

Passed through in the night as part of a detour around the flooded Mississippi River on the way home from a K.C. family reunion.

Caldwell Co. (8/1992)

Passed through as part of a detour around the Mississippi floods.

Daviess Co. (8/1992)

Passed through as part of a detour around the Mississippi floods.

Jefferson Co. (6/2004)

Here the Ozark plateau leans against the Mississippi. Mastodon SP. Stopped here to use the bathroom, but became interested in collection of Ice Age tools found along the river. Otto. Hillsboro. House Springs.

Ste. Genevieve Co. (6/2004)

St. Mary. A beautiful town surrounded by hills and bluffs It is charming in its simplicity. A bridge to Kaskaskia. Ste. Genevieve. Proud of its French heritage as part of the Illinois colony and exceptional examples of colonial French archetecture. God bless this town for giving me shelter on a rough night. Surrounded by beautiful, hilly countryside.

Perry Co. (6/2004)

Brewer. Perryville. A hard-working town. McBride. Belgique. I like the name of this tiny hamlet, but didn't stop.

Warren Co. (12/2004)

Former home of Daniel Boone. Dutzow. Marthasville. Treloer. Passed along Missouri River on MO-94.

Franklin Co. (12/2004)

Washington. The only big town along the Missouri. It saved me from pushing my car once.

Montgomery Co. (12/2004)

A beautiful place known as the Missouri Rhineland. Full of hills and small towns embracing their German heritage. Here we explored a golf course in search of the documented burial place of one of Jessica's ancestors, an early citizen of Hermann. Saw graves of former slaves.

Gasconade Co. (12/2004)

Hermann. Site of old Protestant German settlement on the Missouri River that is well-preserved in some sections of town. The town is famous for its wine and wineries. I bought some local wine, but have yet to break the seal.

Newton Co. (8/2005)

Joplin. The hotels here did not honor any promises they made. I did not like the feel of the Interstate town and so quickly headed east. The unfriendliness of the people did not match the pleasant encounter I had with Joplinians in St. Louis.

Lawrence Co. (8/2005)

Springfield. This medium-sized city is the location of the west walls of the Ozark Plateau.

Christian Co. (8/2005)

Ozark. This tourist town acts as a hotel for travelers to Branson. I stayed here in the hills one night.

Douglas Co. (8/2005)

Passed through the Ozark forests and hills on way to St. Louis. Ava. Coldspring. Vanzant.

Howell Co. (8/2005)

Passed through beautiful Ozark wooded farms and hills on way to St. Louis. Twain NF. Willow Springs. Mountain View.

Shannon Co. (8/2005)

Passed through beautiful Ozark back roads on way to St. Louis. Birch Tree.

Howell Co. (8/2005)

Van Buren. Visited Ozark River NSR and explored back roads. Noticed a very distinct and new accent (to me) in the locals.

Reynolds Co. (8/2005)

Passed through beautiful Ozark back roads on way to St. Louis. Centerville. Taum Sauk Mtn. The highest point in Missouri is barely visible.

Iron Co. (8/2005)

Passed through beautiful Ozark back roads on way to St. Louis. Pilot Knob. Belleview.

Washington Co. (8/2005)

Passed through beautiful Ozark country on way to St. Louis. Caledonia. Potosi. Old Mines. Fertile.

Cape Girardeau Co. (7/2006)

Cape Girardeau. Seemed like a decent Mississippi ricver town even though it is the birthplace of Rush Limbaugh. The Pear Tree Inn in town though made me sick, profiting off disaster. They were overcharging for rooms and we desperately needed one as a huge storm was passing over. People from St. Louis were fleeing the city in the hundred degree heat when the massive storm practically destroyed the city. Fruitland.

Taney Co. (4/2009)


Atchison Co. (4/2010)

Coming. Soon.

Holt Co. (4/2010)

Coming. Soon.

Andrew Co. (4/2010)

Coming. Soon.

Buchanan Co. (4/2010)

St. Joseph. Coming Soon.



Market Street and the St. Louis courthouse where the Dred Scott case was heard.  This view is from the Arch looking west.

An LDS temple built on holy ground in Independence. (2007)

The Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

An avenue at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis.