Where the blacktop ends

I’m back! I was able to unplug and spend a super relaxing week away in Eminence, Missouri last week. You’ve probably never heard of this little one-horse town with a population of 600, but let me tell you, this place has a piece of my heart ❤.

This was my 27th annual trip to Eminence. Every year during the first week of August, my family packs our horse trailer full of all the camping essentials, loads the horses up, and heads west to the Cross Country Trail Ride in Eminence, MO.

The trip from Indiana to Missouri is unremarkable – not a whole lot of intriguing landscape to look at while you travel. But, once your tires hit that red Missouri dirt, you know you’re in for a treat. Nestled in the heart of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways, Eminence swallows you up in its cool natural spring waters, clear, winding riverways and rocky Ozark hills.

After a winding 12 mile trip down Highway 19 – over the river and through the woods – the blacktop ends (literally) and when you follow the dirt road through the gates of CCTR, suddenly all your worries wash away. Ahhh.

It’s simpler times at CCTR. Days consist of soaking your feet in the river, canoeing, kayaking, tubing, horseback riding the trails through the Ozark mountains, napping in the shade of your camper awning, eating in the “chow hall”, outdoor dances with live music by the Jonesy band, and topping off your day with some soft-serve ice cream at the arena snack shack.

This may not sound like any fun to a lot of people. But, to me, this is my idea of paradise. Out there in the middle of no where the stars shine brighter at night, the sun and the river water work wonders on your hair and skin, the air is cleaner, and the people are like family. There’s really no place like it.

It’s good for the soul to go somewhere that forces you to disconnect from the rest of the world. At CCTR the cell reception is spotty at best, there’s no wi-fi, and most of the camp is lit of by camp fires and patio string lights at night. It’s the little piece of heaven that I get to share with my family and dearest friends every year, so I wanted to share it with you too ❤.


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