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On a blisteringly hot Saturday afternoon I drove out on Missouri Route 94 to see the condition of the Missouri River.

The Missouri has been in flood for weeks now, and there's no let up in sight for the next month or so. Locally, it has not breached any levees or caused the misery that is plaguing riverside towns upstream, but it is still very high.

I drove down the banks near the Katy Trail at Weldon Spring. You can see the beginning of the boat ramp there dipping into the water.

Typically, there would be a considerable drop down to the river – and that's where I was when I took this shot looking up the ramp in April 2010 (above right). All the rubble you see in that photograph is currently under water.I continued my journey, stopping off at my favorite local winery, the Blumenhof Winery, to pick up a couple of cases of wine and then continued on to the riverside town of Washington.

There is a large car park on the lower level of the bank. All that's left of that is a short strip that I had to access by a stairway.
When I last visited this spot last winter, not only was the car park well above the river level, there was a substantial amount of bank below it.

A flood level marker post stood in the water next to a partially submerged lamp pole.[/img]
The 'No Swimming' sign is not to be ignored.

At the best of times the river here is treacherous with powerful currents; in flood it was churning with parts of branches and trees and other debris that swirled by quite frequently. Even boating is not to undertaken lightly in these conditions.

This is the road that leads to the lower parking level. It's not a boat ramp although it was being used as one this Saturday evening.

Rather foolishly, I thought, looking at the turbulent water.