Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Blue Spring

From Big Spring, we headed out to another of the many springs around the Ozark National Scenic Riverways.  It didn't look like it was very far away on the map, but there wasn't a direct route to the spring, so it required a bit of a drive.  But that was ok, it was still foggy and the fall colors were still vivid.  And it helped that there were a ton of old barns along the way.



All of these barns were along a very scenic stretch of the road, and were all nearly right next to each other...


We turned off of the paved road onto a well-maintained dirt road (which was nice, since we were in my little Pontiac). The road passed by a few homes, but it was mostly woods and a few fields. The fog was still thick. We were both amazed that we somehow managed to get up there when the conditions were just about right.


And one more barn...


Eventually, we found the road that went down the hill towards Blue Spring. I was thrilled that it was still foggy. The fog really brought out the fall colors. So much, that I was worried that they'd look too saturated in the pictures.



But the fog wouldn't last for too much longer, sadly. By the time we got to the parking area for Blue Spring, the fog had burned off and the sun was threatening to break through the clouds. But we headed off on the short trail to Blue Spring, which as the name suggests, is quite blue. The Osage called this the "Spring of the Summer Sky," which is a better name, much more poetic.


The vivid blues are the result of both the suspended particles of limestone and dolomite in the waters, and for the depth of the spring's conduit (nearly 300 foot deep). It was a beautiful spot, but kinda hard to convey in a photograph. There is a wooden walkway that extends out over the spring, where you can look down into the spring. The rocks there head steeply down, disappearing into the inky blue waters. This is the view from an overlook on the bluff above the spring.


Blue Spring is the 6th largest spring in Missouri, with an average outflow of 90 million gallons a day. The spring water flows into the nearby Current River.


From there, we got back into the car and drove toward a few more springs...

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