Sunday, March 1, 2009


We had a beautiful snowfall yesterday. It snowed all day and it was absolutely gorgeous. I love snow and especially at this time of year, because it doesn't usually hang around that long. And though it was a great day to sit in front of the fireplace and watch the snow fall, it made for very slick roads. Interstate 44 for shut completely down in our area of travel. We could get to Springfield okay, lucky for hubby goin' and comin' to work, but if you wanted to head east to Lebanon, forget about it, and it was shut down all day. Today, though the temps did not get above freezin', the sun shone so strongly that most of the snow is gone.

The snow and below freezin' temp's did not deter a race of people that come to our area at this time of year. It is a hardy race of humans, they have been know to withstand any weather that Mother Nature wants to throw at them. This race is know as 'Trout Fishermen'.

Trout season started today at Bennett Springs. It runs from the first of March to the end of October.

Here are some pictures of these fools, sorry, I mean 'hardy fishermen', taken today in below, I mean way below freezin' temp's. They said they had ice on their fishin' lines.

Each year at the openin' of trout season, about 3,000 people show up to stand next to another fool, sorry, I mean 'hardy fisherman', to cast their little fly out there and attempt to catch one of these:

Now I like trout but I can't imagine tryin' to fish when 3,000 other fools, sorry, I mean 'hardy fishermen' are castin' their lines in right next to each other. I mean you can see how close everybody was to each other. And these pictures are just showin' a small area of Bennett Springs.

One good thing, they said the trout were bitin'. They said that no sooner did you cast out, your fly was hit and you were haulin' 'er in. Now that sounds good, and good eatin', let me tell ya.

Bennett Springs Park is a beautiful place to visit even if you're not fishin'. There are trails to walk and it is also a fish hatchery so there's fish to see and they sell feed for you to toss out to 'em. CD and I love to run down there on Sunday mornin's to eat breakfast at the old dinin' hall, and then we walk one of the trails. Our granddaughter likes to go too, she likes to feed the fish.

The springs origin is attributed by the Osage Indians to an earthquake caused by the creator's displeasure with the tribe.
The first white settler's came in 1837 and built the first of several Mill's at the falls. Through the years Bennett Springs was home to grist mills, flour mills and saw mills.

Bennett Springs is located in the Spring Valley of the Niangua River. Water comes up from a spring that pumps out over 100 million gallons per day. The spring basin is 50 feet in diameter and divers have gone down 80 feet in depth and 13 feet in length before the water's velocity becomes so great that they can go no further.

These pictures were taken this past summer at the end of June.

The pictures of the trout were taken at one of the hatchery tanks.

This is a walkway that runs beside some of the hatchery tanks and there are different sizes in each one.

Toss a handful of food in and they go into feedin' frenzy mode. The top of the water here is usually smooth as glass, the fish have it churned up tryin' to get the food. Granddaughter says they act like a bunch of sharks. She says she would not want to fall in there. I wouldn't either!

This is a picture I took from above the falls lookin' down to the bridge below the falls.

The bank is steep in this area so they built steps for the fools, sorry, I mean 'hardy fishermen' to get down to the water. Really cool steps.

Here's below the falls lookin' back up.

Brave fool, sorry, 'hardy fisherman' standing on that slippery wall.

Brave. I mean when you're walkin' across a place like this, not only is the water force tryin' to sweep you away, but it's slicker than snot!

This is back up from the falls. It's much more tranquil and peaceful here.

Back up the spring from the falls. I like this picture. I could be one of those fools, sorry, 'hardy fishermen' out there. I love to fish.

Back up the spring it is like a different place. So calm and you can fish here too. You can actually stand on the bank and see the trout swimmin' around, the water is crystal clear.

Isn't this a neat buildin'? I always thought this was a gauge house but my hubby said he didn't think so. I bet I'm the one who's right!

There is a pavilion built up above spring for sittin' and eatin'.

The town that was first built in this valley was known as Brice. There is still a church and a couple of other buildin's that I think was part of the town.

Here are some old pictures of the old mills, there are no mills left here, the last one burned down in 1944.

An old picture of the settlement of Brice.

More old pictures of some of the mills built on this spring.

Here's a picture of the old mill stream leadin' to the mill in the distance.

Here is an old picture of the dinin' hall. You can still eat here and they have great food, some of the best fried chicken and fried trout.

Here's an old picture of the spring hole. You can see it in the back ground.

Here's another old picture of the spring hole. The Indians called it "Eye of the Sacred One".

Well I hope you've enjoyed my pictures of Bennett Springs State Park, I hope you get to come and visit some day. It is such a pretty place and the fishin' is great. I promise I won't call you a 'fool'.

Here's one more picture of one of the old mill's race wheel. I love this picture. It just makes me want to be there.

Youn's come back dreckly now, ya hear?


The Blonde Duck said...

That's a ton of fish!

PetalsYoga said...

So, we're headed to Australia in a week and my daughter is so excited about getting to fish there. I'll fill you in about it and try to take some photos too. Thanks for the great pics and info about Bennett Springs State Park. Your blogging just makes me miss Missouri so much!

Take care,


justjoycee said...

Very interesting post rebel, and funny to. What a beautiful place. I have never seen snow, or the changing of the season. Someday I would love to live in a place like this. I learned a bit of history too. And by the way those fishermen are fools.
Looks like a wonderful place to live. Thanks, Joyce

Rebel said...

Hey Blondie, it is a lot of fish! They raise about a half million trout a year!

Petals, you are so lucky gettin' to go to Australia! I bet you are just as excited as your daughter.

Joyce, I think I would be really sad if I lived in a place where it didn't snow. 'Course, it would be nice to live on a tropical island and there are times I am like everyone else who live here and I get sick and tired of Winter. The changin' seasons are nice.

Hillbilly Duhn said...

If my Hubby would have known about this event, he would have been one of the fools!! I mean, hardy I can't wait for him to get home today so I can show him your blog/pictures.

Punkn said...

Reb, you took me down memory lane. It has been quite a few years since we've been to Bennett Springs and we never joined the idiots on opening day!

It is amazing the amount of snow you had and we didn't get any just down the road from you. My kids live a little west of us and they all got snow too. And here I was kind of wanting some for a change...

okiesister said...

What a lovely spot.
This made me want to catch a fish too. I'm so putting that on my list of things to do this year.
Thanks for the tour.

Darlene said...

Morning Rebel,

You ALWAYS have the most interesting posts. I enjoyed reading about the town and the old mills. I can't even imagine being in that freezing water and fishing!!! CRAZY!! Love seeing all of your pictures.

Hope you have a great Monday!♥

My New 30 said...

I love trout but those guys are NUTS-O! Thanks for sharing this - I just love the local posts that you do!!

Rebel said...

Hillbilly, I hope your husband likes the pictures, hope they don't make you a 'fishin' widow'! Do ya'll live anywhere near Bennett Springs?

Punkn, Did you say you live somewhere near Jeff City? We are in Webster County. We got about 4 inches of snow total, with the way it snowed all day I would've thought we'd end up with 10 inches like some people did.

Okie, I hope you get to come to Bennett Springs to fish, it is so beautiful. They have cabins for rent there and there is a resort on down the river a bit.

Darlene, I'm with you! I love to fish but...Did you see the people in the current photos standing directly below the falls? Can you imagine how cold that spray of water was?

Mary, Thanks. I love postin' about the Ozarks, it is such a pretty place and there is a lot to see. It's kinda sad though, so much of the old is disappearin'. I'm so glad I get to share some of it with ya'll.

Debbie said...

Good heavens. That's a lot of fishermen and some mighty big fish.

Jodi said...

Great pics and I enjoyed the read! Looks like a place I'd like to visit someday. I just can't believe that people would walk on that slippery surface. What a site to see all those people lined up like that too!

SuzyQ said...

Wow what neat pictures! Those first few pictures make me feel so cold! How can anyone fish like that? Whewwww.....

noble pig said...

I'm with you, I wouldn't be caught in that river either! LOL!

3 Bay B Chicks said...

Sometimes, when I am out and about in blogland, mindlessly clicking away, I come across a true gem of a site. Something different, something fun. A blog that gives me a peek into another part of the country.

Today, that site is you. Wow! I am loving not only this post, but most everything about your site. Your profile description cracks me up. I even took the time to read a few of your older posts.

Thanks for all this! I like it here.


Nanny Goats In Panties said...

Thanks for the educational tour!

I couldn't believe that picture of everyone lined up in the river next to each other. You know...the "hardy" fisherman. Shouldn't they be in rowboats or something and hundreds of feet apart from each other? Ah, what do I know - I'm just a city girl.

By the way, thanks for visiting my site last week when I was featured on SITS!

Peggy said...

I have a brother that is out the first day of the season no matter what the weather. He loves fishing for trout and I love eating them LOL

rebel said...

Debbie, That is a lot of fishermen!LOL, and what mighty big fish!
Thanks for stoppin' by.

Jodi, I'm with you, it looks insane enough without the risk of fallin' in!

Suzy, That's a very good question. I don't know how they fish in the cold like that either. I mean they had ice on their fishin' lines for pete's sake!

Francesca, Thanks for the nice comments. I'm so glad you stopped by and liked my blog. Sure hope you'll be back.

Nanny Goat, Glad you stopped by. The 'hardy fishermen' usually wear waders (waterproof pants) so they can wade out in the water. Trout are usually in really cold spring water and it's not usually too deep. Even when it's not openin' day you will see 'hardy fishermen' standin' next to each other. I like to fish away from people. I'm not only there for the fish but the solitude.

Peggy, I agree! Trout is one of the tastiest fish, probably my favorite next to catfish.

Thanks everybody for your nice comments.

Monica said...

Wow. So Francesca over at 3 Bay B Chicks visited me, so I visited her, read her comments, saw your comment, saw she visited YOU so I'm visiting you! :-) Don't you love the circle of blog life? I could just sit here and look at all your great pictures. Even the ones of the spoons putting things in jars. (I'm easily transfixed by images.) Awesome stuff!

Rebel said...

Monica, I'm glad for the circle of blog life 'cause I get to meet nice people like you! I'm glad you stopped by, now I'm gonna go and check out your blog.

Nancy said...

Rebel, This has been a very interesting post!!! I have REALLY enjoyed the history here...
That is the most fish and fools...I mean fishermen I have ever seen together!
I really enjoy all the old picutures! I am so fascinated with life back in those days!

Rebel said...

Nancy, I am too. I love old pictures and can stare at them for quite a while just lookin' at everythin'. The good ol' days.

muddywaters said...

Thanks for posting the pix. I enjoyed the old pictures. I've been through this part of the country once.

The trout fishing reminds of the fishing that goes on at Roaring River near Cassville, MO.