Man on 22-river, 22-state canoe trip stops in Montana - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Man on 22-river, 22-state canoe trip stops in Montana

Posted: Jul 12, 2018 1:28 PM Updated:

GREAT FALLS- Neal Moore is a writer and a freelance journalist, but he also gives himself the title of "explorer."

From the Pacific Coast to the Atlantic Coast, Moore is working his way across 22 rivers in 22 states, totaling 7,500 miles, both paddling and walking his canoe.

He has been an expatriate for years, spending time in both Asia and Africa. But he realized the greatest adventure of all might be in his own home country.

His goal for this trip is to see the different cultures that make up the United States and highlight who we are as Americans.

He started his journey in Astoria, Ore., where he came up the Columbia River, up the Spokane River, to the Clark Fork River, then finally had to walk his canoe over the Continental Divide.

Now, he’s right in Great Falls, where he will be going with the current on the Missouri River.

He will take the Missouri River down to St. Louis into the Mississippi River down to New Orleans, where he plans to be by the end of 2018.

After that, he will skirt the Gulf to Mobile, Ala., and canoe up the Tombigbee River, up the Tennessee River, then up the Kentucky River to the Ohio River.

The Ohio River will then lead him to the Allegheny River, which will take him to Lake Chautauqua and to the Great Lakes. Lake Erie will take him past Buffalo, New York to the Erie Canal, to the Hudson River, and finally to New York City. He plans to end his trip circling the Statue of Liberty by the end of 2019.

“To come across the country in a natural way with nature all around you and then to be able to connect and listen to folks all across the country is just a really exciting idea,” Moore said.

He previously canoed the Mississippi River in 2009 during the Great Recession and wrote a book of his travels: "Down the Mississippi." He will have a book reading in Fort Benton on Friday, July 13 at the Public Library from 3:30 to 5 p.m.

Moore got the inspiration to do this trip from a man from Bozeman that he met during his trip on the Mississippi in 2009. He taught Moore a lot of things, including to slow down and enjoy the adventure. He taught him how to connect rivers on a journey, and if two rivers do not connect, you have land wheels on your canoe to haul it to the next water source.

You can follow his journey on Facebook and on his website.

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