Driving Through an Arboreal Kaleidescope on Hwy 19 in Missouri
If the area around Eminence, Missouri were located within driving distance of an East Coast metropolis, Highway 19 would be packed each fall with burnt-out urban escapees looking for a foliage fix. Zoom out on Google Maps and you'll notice that this forgotten corner of Missouri is the darkest, densest patch of green between the Appalachians and the Rockies. You'll have it almost to yourself. Only a smattering of nature-loving kayakers, canoers, trout anglers, hikers, hunters, bikers, and ambitious day-trippers drift far enough off the Interstate to explore this rollercoaster road through Missouri's remote deciduous forests of sassafras, sumac, black gum, dogwood, ash, hickory, maple, and oak. From Eminence, the road heads south, going even deeper into the Ozarks. Most, however, prefer to stop here to explore the plethora of springs and 19th-century mills—and float through the Ozark National Scenic Riverway on the crystal-clear Jack's Fork and Current Rivers. Scenic Highway 19 also heads north to the German wine town of Hermann and beyond to Mark Twain's boyhood town on the Mississippi, Hannibal.
- Tory Braden Post Card perfect.