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I was up at 5:30 am and relaxed in the tent for a while. It hadn’t rained, but the sky was overcast (more about that in a minute).

I had breakfast in the tent and broke camp at 7:30. Getting on the highway toward McKittrick I took a different exit from the park than I’d come in on. I somehow got turned around, and since I couldn’t see the sun, I headed in the wrong direction. Worse yet, I was pushing the kart up a steep hill. Finally I admitted to myself that something must be wrong. I pulled out my iPhone and looked at my compass app.  I’d wasted close to an hour by the time I got back towhere I’d started. (The same thing happened to Lewis and Clark occasionally, but this did not make me feel any better.)

I retraced my steps back to the Katy Trail and walked, seemingly forever, from Hermann to Treloar, where once again there was no place to stay or camp. I was pretty exhausted.

Looking around, I spied a couple looking at the visitor information exhibit describing Daniel Boone’s presence and influence in the region.

I said hello to Bruce and Susie, and after a brief exchange I brazenly asked if they’d be willing to give me a five-minute lift to Marthasville, where the guidebook indicated it was okay to camp for free.

“Sure,” Bruce said. “Why not?” said Susie.

And a few minutes later we were there. A Little League baseball game was in progress on the field where people would normally camp, so I settled on another park across the road. I’m the only tent anywhere. A great spot, assuming no one harasses me. I feel comfortable.

By a wonderful coincidence, Bruce and Susie are from Miami, Oklahoma. Bruce is a retired Miami firefighter, besides having many other interesting qualities. Susie is a retired RN and shares a bloodline with Daniel Boone. So I can add two more angels to my list.

I’m hoping to finish walking on the Katy Trail in St. Charles in two days, and will then meet up with two friends, one new and one old (well, all three of us are old!).

It’s been nice on the Katy Trail not having to deal with traffic or dodging cars and trucks. But the lack of services is draining.

That said, it’s a beautiful evening here in Marthasville. I walked 19 miles today.

@ Marthasville, Missouri

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