NEMO River Valley Chapter annual re-organizational meeting

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NEMO River Valley Chapter held its annual re-organizational meeting on Jan. 17 at Mark Twain Lake Visitors Center. There were 49 attendees, including several new members. We are thankful to have youth among us, who will take over next generation. Welcome our new members, Paul Gittemeier, Glenna Smith, Michael and Jennifer Kauth Family, Beth Haden, James and Kathy Meyer Family, David and Angela Talbot Family, Evan and Mendy Wenke Family, Kim Helbing, and Dan and Dana Ernat Family.
Members gathered for food and visiting before the meeting. Officers were re-instated: Mary K Church, Trail Master; Wayne Lake Assistant Trail Master; Becki Krueger, Paper Trail Master. Chapter accomplishments for 2014 were reviewed and events for 2015 were scheduled.
NEMO River Valley Chapter collaborates with Corp of Engineers managers at Mark Twain Lake; this partnership has resulted in maintenance of trails, maps and ethics signage, restrooms at two multi-use trail heads, seven equestrian campsites, hitch rails, and other amenities for horsemen and other users. This alliance is obviously a win-win situation for all involved! We welcome inquiries about, and guests to attend, any NEMO River Valley Chapter events.

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Final General Management Plan for Ozark National Scenic Riverways

Dear Friends of Ozark National Scenic Riverways,
I am pleased to announce the release of the Final General Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement for Ozark National Scenic Riverways.  This document represents careful consideration of a wide range of public comments received earlier this year.  Your input has been invaluable in preparing the final plan.

The Final General Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement is now available on the National Park Service website at  The document is over 600 pages long, so the number of printed hardcopies has been kept to a minimum.  An informational newsletter is attached to this email.  For your convenience, CD copies of the plan will be available upon request near the end of December by contacting the Riverways at the address or phone number below.
The National Park Service places great value on your interest in and passion for Ozark National Scenic Riverways.  We look forward to implementing this plan with your support and collaboration!

William N. Black



Martin & Janet Murphy                              At Large Members

Jennifer & Brian Connell                            NEMO River Valley Chapter

Ronnie & Barbara Underwood                  Eastern MO Chapter

Duke & Joyce Dana                                  Tri-Lakes Chapter

Doug & Connie Kiburz                               At Large Members

Steve & Nancy Sagehorn                         Eastern MO Chapter

Elaine Szwiec                                            South Central Chapter

Ozark Rough Riders 4H Club                   Eastern MO Members

Dane L & Belinda Frazier                          Brownfield Chapter

David & Janice Snow                                Tri-Lakes Chapter

Jo E (Jody) Pusch                                    NEMO River Valley Chapter

Mike & Donna Ruzicka                              Eastern MO Chapter

Dale & Liz Yelton                                      At Large Members

Shelly Maddux                                          Brownfield Chapter


New Horse Crossing Signs at St. Joe State Park



New Horse Crossing Signs at St. Joe State Park

On November 4 two horse crossing signs at St. Joe State Park were upgraded as a result of SMMBCH efforts.   The original signs had only a horse and rider designation with no indication of a horse crossing along the highway.

Eastern Missouri chapter leader Larry Bast worked with the local sheriff and two state representatives to better define the horse crossing.  The new horse signs are larger and a “X-ing” sign was added below each one which provides riders and drivers a safer and better defined horse crossing.  The process of getting the signs changed took three months.


Indian Trails Chapter builds a new pavilion

tmi kids champ 441 (1)Indian Trails Chapter is very excited to have had the opportunity to build a new pavilion over our donated picnic table for all trail users to use on the multi-use trails at Indian Creek Conservation Area.  The pavilion and picnic table are at the old Baker Cemetery which our chapter reclaimed several years ago and continues to maintain.  This is a great place on the trail to stop for lunch.  There are hitching posts built by our chapter so you can tie up your horse and enjoy a rest under the pavilion. Gene Atterberry also built and placed mounting blocks at the cemetery for riders to use.  The pavilion would not have been possible without the TMI program from SMMBCH  and the great working relationship our chapter has established with our local Missouri Department of Conservation Office.  Many thanks to Kevin Krause MDC for helping us get this project approved.  We are sincerely grateful to chapter member Gene Atterberry and his crew Carroll Moorman, Steve Johns and Dennis Leuschen for their hard work in building the pavilion and the use of Gene’s equipment to build the pavilion.

River Springs Chapter News by Candace Hale

In spite of the extreme heat, the chapter has continued to have its monthly ride/work days.    In June, we had several members attend the Fun Ride at Brushy Creek, which is always a fun time.  Two weeks later we returned to Lazy C Wrangler Camp in Oregon County, to finish our Trail Maintenance Incentive.  While we were working, several trailers arrived with riders who praised what we had done.  We are very proud of the end result and hope others, in the future, will enjoy the campground with all its improvements.

In July, we lucked out when the weather turned nice and we rode at Lake Wappapello State Park.  There were many trees down that we will return later in the year to remove in Butler County.  We thought it would be too hot for chain saws, but we did snip and remove limbs before returning to the parking area for a pot luck lunch.

For August we rode out from the Shawnee Staging Area in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways.  The trails were clear of downed trees, but we snipped and lopped the overhang and replaced missing trail markers.  We were also lucky enough to see a few of the “wild” horses as we progressed along the trail near the Broadfoot fields.  The three panel information boards at the Broadfoot staging area were missing and we reported that to the ONSR Park officials.

We had some disappointing news from the Ripley County Wagon Train and Trail Ride Assoc.  They have withdrawn from the 0-3 project in Ripley County.  0-3 is a non-designated campground and we had agreed to partner with them and the Mark Twain National Forest Eleven Point District on getting the trails mapped and designated and improvements to the primitive campground.  Our chapter members discussed the project and decided to continue with the partnership with the MTNF.  As soon as the summer heat abates, member Gary Garner and others will be GPS mapping the existing trails and we will also be working on getting a grant to help with the costs.   The proposal includes approximately 30 miles of designated trails that will loop to the Current River and back,  a driving trail for wagons and carriages and an improved campground.




Welcome to Robert Weaver and Darlene & Matthew Helmig who recently joined as members of the Brownfield Chapter!

Trail Designation Update:  Designating trails is a long process but almost there!  Per Carol of the forestry on 26 June:  ‘The final heritage report should be going to the State Historic Preservation Office for approval as we speak.  This is the last piece to complete approval.’

And on 18 August, update of the project for designating the red and blue trails is completed ‘and should be receiving a letter from the State Historic Preservation Office for the files by the 1st of September, but got verbal approval that all is good.’

Carol is working with the GPS specialist to get the new loops added onto the trails layer, so the trail map on the Forest Service website can be updated this fall.  She also requested Cole Creek Trail with the new loops be added to The Missouri Equestrian Trail Guide.
Per Carol: “Long time coming and thanks for all the volunteers help!”

The Brownfield Chapter asked approval to submit a grant for a pavilion; however, the response was ‘Forest Plan guides us to “Develop trailheads to the minimum standard that serves the established use.  Place primary emphasis on public safety by providing adequate parking space off roadways.”  Rarely do we have pavilions at any trailheads, unless it is a developed campground/picnic area.’  A nice to have but definitely not a must!

In the mean time, the Brownfield Chapter was approved and received the TMI.  Part of the funds were spent to have two loads of gravel delivered to the campground circle drive then used a tractor to place some of the gravel under the picnic tables and forestry sign (unfortunately spinning in the gravel and in the grass has been a past time of some coming to the campground….).  Signs for naming the ponds along the trails were made and hung the first part of August. The color coded diamonds with nails were ordered for marking the trails and placed on the trails in mid-August along with letters at intersections.  These markers are intended to make navigating the trails easy and the Cole Creek Trail map was updated and published on the Brownfield Chapter webpage to include the color coded trails and the lettered intersections.

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The last 2014 event will be a fall work day on September 27, Brownfield Chapter’s 4th Annual National Public Lands Day (NPLD) Work Day.  The Tri-Lakes Chapter will be joining us again this year, looking forward to visiting and working with that great group again!  Carol from the forestry is planning on attending the work day and bringing some fiberglass trail post markers with stickers along with a post driver to mark the trails that go through the fields.  She wants to get the new color diamonds up on the new trail sections during the work day (already started but more diamonds are needed in areas where the trail is hard to follow, confirm the trail, and mark the trail in the fields).
Heads up!  Do not plan on riding or camping at Cole Creek Trail the weekend before the work day. The Berryman Adventure group submitted an application to the forestry for a bike/run/canoeing event the weekend of 20 September.  The group is planning to use Cole Creek Campground as their headquarters (about 75 campers) and use the trails for mountain biking and orienteering.  At the time this article was written the Forest Service was completing the special use permit.



NEMO River Valley Chapter News

June 7- Our first National Trails Day Membership Ride.   Old and new members enjoyed lunch in the barn at Frank Russell, LNT awareness lesson by Becki Krueger, and a ride that required raincoats.     The day was very damp, but spirits were not, and since we gained members, it was a success, despite the rain.

June 19-Eleven volunteers met to do groundwork and clearing around the existing campsites, and those under construction at Frank Russell.   Wayne Lake and John Turner were busy with tractor, loader, chainsaw, 4 wheeler and harrow, which made it easier on those workers with the shovels!  As usual, Shelly, Corp of Engineers manager, was working with us.

July 22- Eight members met at Spalding Trail Head to finish work around the new restroom;  Wayne furnished and operated tractor and loader; John ran his chainsaw.  We cleared picnic area, raked, shoveled, seeded, along with COE personnel Allen and Shelly.  A large amount of water furnished by Culligan was consumed, due to the heat and humidity.

NEMO River Valley Crew at Frank Russell Trail Head: Mary K Church, Wayne Lake, Don Lay, Shelly Howald (COE), Carole Sharp, Donna Turner, Linda Davis, John Turner, David and Marguerite Jones, Gordon Ipson (FOREST Council). Walt Davis helped with the work, not pictured.

NEMO River Valley Crew at Frank Russell Trail Head: Mary K Church, Wayne
Lake, Don Lay, Shelly Howald (COE), Carole Sharp, Donna Turner, Linda Davis,
John Turner, David and Marguerite Jones, Gordon Ipson (FOREST Council). Walt
Davis helped with the work, not pictured.

Marguerite Jones and grandson, Lincoln Talbott, work side-by-side on the landscape work at Spalding Trail Head.

Marguerite Jones and grandson, Lincoln Talbott, work side-by-side on the
landscape work at Spalding Trail Head.

Aug. 14- Wayne and Margaret Lake and Mary K Church enjoyed lunch at the Visitors’ Center, along with local COE personnel, to welcome the new St. Louis District Commander, Colonel Mitchell.

Sept. 27, NPLD-Work day is scheduled to begin at 9 AM, meeting at the Frank Russell Trail Head.

There are numerous projects that need attention, including setting the hitch rail and construction of picnic tables at Spalding Trail Head.  Additionally, we will focus on whatever other projects  our COE managers need assistance with.

Oct. 25- We are scheduled to do Mt. Pleasant Cemetery maintenance.  Work crews will ride from Von’s @ 9:30.

Nov. 1- SMMBCH Annual Membership meeting at Brushy Creek will be attended by several NEMO Chapter members.

TMI project is in process. The carsonite posts have arrived; workdays have not been scheduled to set those, but will be soon.

Several of the chapter  members always ride with  loppers, saw, and clippers, and take care of trouble spots when the see them.   Thanks to these dedicated Back Country Horsemen!