June 21, 2022 Ozark, AR Day 2

It was a sleep-in, lazy kind of morning. The skies were hazy and it is expected to be a warm and humid day. Nothing was moving on the river and the tug was still in the lock chamber since last night. Bob had a conference call with some board members this morning, so I took a drive in the Jeep around the campground to make myself scarce. Down at the boat launch, I got a great look at the bridge we came over yesterday.

In the “C” section of the campground which is across the road, I got a great view of the lock as it was discharging a lot of water.

I could see that the tugboat in the lock was raising with the level of the water and soon it was underway as it moved these 3 barges down the river.

I returned to the campsite as Bob was finishing his call, so that was perfect timing. We finished getting ready and left to take a short drive to see the other side of the river where the main part of the lock was located. We crossed the bridge and you could see that there was not a whisper of the wind anywhere.

We drove through the town of Ozark to get to where we were going.

It is a small town of 3,600 people and has some really cool old buildings as most old towns do.

This old church really stood out as a beautiful piece of architecture.

One of the neat things we noticed is that they had these beautiful crepe myrtle bushes in standing pots along the main street through town.

We drove on Highway 64 for a short distance until we came to the Ozark-Jeta Taylor Lock and Dam entrance.

It was a beautiful drive down a shady lane which brought us to the river.

Sitting alongside the lock was the red tug we saw yesterday and it looked like they were doing some work on a brand new crane that was sitting on the barge.

The area was pretty secure, but we found a road that took us down to the boat launch.

The shoreline was littered with dead logs of all shapes and sizes and other debris that was washed up onto the shore from a period of higher water levels.

From where we were, we could see a fishing boat out in the river working hard at finding a good place to fish. The current was pretty strong.

As we turned around at the boat launch, we saw this gentleman coming up from fishing from the shore with his catch of 3 catfish. He seemed pleased with his catch.

As we left the area, we got another look at all the dead logs that have been collecting along the shore for some time.

There is a train track that runs parallel to the river. Since we’ve been here, we’ve seen a train come by 2 or 3 times yesterday, but none yet today.

As we left the shore, we saw a sign for the Reed Mountain Park and Overlook. So we had to check it out.

We entered a beautifully kept park and picnic area with an overlook.

From the overlook, we could see the Ozark-Jeta Taylor Lock and Dam below us. It was quite a view from up there. We could see that more water was being discharged from the dam by the wave action and white water along the dam.

Leaving the park, we got a great view from this higher vantage point of the area around us. If it wasn’t so hazy today, we would have been able to see the Boston Mountains and the Ozark National Forest more clearly. You can barely see their outline off in the distance.

We crossed back over the bridge to see that there was no river traffic at all today.

As we headed back to the campground, Bob wanted to look at the dam again to see all the water being discharged. By the time we got to where we could see the dam, the water release had stopped. Oh well, as we were leaving, we noticed someone coming from this parking area where there was a walkway. We hadn’t noticed this walkway before.

We parked and walked over to check it out. It was a wooden plank, suspended bridge over a tributary of the river.

Bob walked partway, but I walked to the end which brought me down to the river’s edge. I got a great view of the river to the south.

Looking ahead of me, I could see the same fisherman still fishing on the river and there was no water being released from the dam anymore.

We left there and returned to the campground. Bob took the Jeep down to another site that had shade where he could vacuum out the Jeep and wipe down the inside. I combed out Auggie from some burrs he had accumulated and he sat outside in the shade for a bit. I did some tidying up inside and worked on the start of the August newsletter. Bob returned after an hour and we enjoyed happy hour in the comfort of our AC. It was pretty steamy outside and got up to 99. We had dinner and took our evening walk once it cooled off. New campers had arrived today and some left this morning. The campground is not full, but there is usually a turnover of a few each day. Tomorrow we leave for Enid, Mississsippi which is about 55 miles south of Memphis. We are staying at another Corps of Engineer campground on Enid Reservoir for 2 nights. We are SLOWLY making our way home.

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