The river's view: How to seek the Kansas City skyline from the M - KCTV5

The river's view: How to seek the Kansas City skyline from the Missouri River

Posted: Updated:
Hundreds of thousands of drivers pass over the Missouri River every day, but few people ever catch a glimpse of the waters that flow under the bridge. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV5 News) Hundreds of thousands of drivers pass over the Missouri River every day, but few people ever catch a glimpse of the waters that flow under the bridge. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV5 News)
Micah Bray kayaks the river several times each summer, paddling right through downtown Kansas City. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV5 News) Micah Bray kayaks the river several times each summer, paddling right through downtown Kansas City. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV5 News)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Hundreds of thousands of drivers pass over the Missouri River every day, but few people ever catch a glimpse of the waters that flow under the bridge.

Micah Bray is among the relative handful of people who have seen the underbelly of the bridges and highways that cross over the Mighty Mo. He kayaks the river several times each summer, paddling right through downtown Kansas City.

"There's this hidden gem that no one uses," Bray said. "Everyone thinks it's dirty and nothing can be accomplished with it. But it's absolutely beautiful."

Bray manages the assignment desk at KCTV5 News, and it is arguably the most chaotic position in the newsroom. From his desk, he manages field crews, helps connect reporters to sources, checks police booking logs, researches and vets stories and often serves as a liaison between the dozens of people working together to create a newscast.

With the weekend comes Bray's respite. He paddles out with his father, David Bray, and his uncle, Jeff Bray. They start at Kaw Point, a boat ramp just minutes from Kansas City's downtown. 

His father once had reservations about canoeing on the Missouri.

"I thought, 'I'm not going out there," David Bray said.

That's how many Kansas Citians feel. They fear the deep, murky river that at first glance looks like it is no place for a kayak.

Tom Bailey, who rents out boats for trips from Parkville, says it's a common misconception.

"There seem to be some myths in Kansas City that there's eddies and that it's really dangerous," he said. "That's just not the case."

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, more than 1 million people use the mother of all waters for recreation within state lines.

James Rudy, who works for the Army Corps of Engineers' office in Napoleon, MO, encourages more Missourians to explore the river but to do so safely.

"You do have to know the rules," Rudy said. "The skill of the canoer isn't as important as the knowledge of the river. You have to know there are dikes and that you can hit them. There's drifts or trees in the river and you have to know what can happen with them."

Micah Bray enjoys the challenges of kayaking on the Missouri. He says the river boasts the best views of the Kansas City skyline and the many natural gifts the river offers.

"We have the royals and chiefs and sporting and the downtown but we have a river down here that needs to be utilized and isn't and if you're into recreation you might want to come down and see what it has to offer," he said.


Helpful links

Navigation charts: http://www.nwk.usace.army.mil/Portals/29/docs/civilworks/navigation/NavCharts/MoRiver_NavCharts_fullbook.pdf

Current conditions: http://www.nwd-mr.usace.army.mil/rcc/current.html

Kayak rentals: http://www.kcriverrun.com/index.html

Copyright 2017 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly
KCTV 5 News

Online Public File:
KCTV  KSMO

Powered by WorldNow CNN
All content © 2017, KCTV; Kansas City, MO. (A Meredith Corporation Station) . All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.