Upper Missouri River Trip...
At the end of the dock (shown in photo) was a sign with the posted rules and I stopped to see how the facility functioned. On weekdays before 4PM docking was free, that's good. After 4PM there is a $5 per hour charge, OK, I can live with that. But then there was the kicker. Overnight stays were charged a flat $50, no consideration for length of the craft or services needed (there was shore power on some slips). I read it a second time. Yep, it was going to cost me $50 to moor my 18-foot boat for the night using none of their services. I certainly didn't want to be searching for a suitable anchorage in the dark. But as much as I wanted to eat a nice meal I just couldn't bring myself to donate $50 to the city of Omaha for the privilege. I decided to once again dine on lunchmeat and coleslaw from the cooler and continue on upstream in search of a place to drop anchor for the night.
When morning came I was feeling a little lazy and got off to a late start (photo). About 11:30AM I was approaching Decatur, NE at the 691 MM. There is a marina located there but typically it wouldn't open until 5PM. As I was passing I noticed a riverside park with a ramp and small dock. My cooler was once again mostly liquid filled so I decided to pull in and see what I could find. Again, I didn't have a good deal confidence in finding much. The population of Decatur was listed as 641 and showed no "points of interest". I walked up and found a small attractive municipal park with a walking path, benches, picnic tables and campground all overlooking the river. As I strolled towards town I came upon a city employee in a pickup truck and inquired about places to eat. He replied that there are three restaurants and added that he was just heading home for lunch and would give me a ride. On the way to the business district I noted that Decatur was a small town but a surprising robust small town. Besides the three restaurants there were two banks, a hardware store, a convenience store and probably more that I didn't notice or can't remember. I stopped for a burger (I've had better) and then grabbed a bag of ice from the convenience store and walked back seven or eight blocks to the boat. Still I was impressed, not bad for a village of 461 residents.
From there Sioux City, IA was a short 41 miles, about two hours. There at the 732 MM is MirTym Marina. It is the largest and nicest and facility I had found on this trip and I decided to stop in and double check the closing time. The dockhand confirmed they would be there until 8PM. I need to mention that MirTym was the only marina that I found that has normal hours, Sunday to Thursday - 10 to 8. On Friday and Saturday, 10 to 10. They also have a restaurant that opens at 11AM, always a good sign. (Photo is MirTym Marina.) Since it was only around 4PM I decided I would complete the run to the end of the navigation channel at the 754 MM and then return for fuel for both Therapy and myself. It only took a mile or so to realize that upstream of Sioux City the Missouri has a different feel. Gone are the daymarks that help guide your way with only the mile markers remaining. Also, the river is much wider and shallower making the channel more difficult to locate. Still, I pushed onward following its winding path.