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post #1 of 12 Old 08-15-2013, 05:41 PM Thread Starter
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Smile mississippi river road input

we're planning on taking a mississippi river road trip, hooking up at the southern end of arkansas and heading norht to somewhere in the middle of illinois before shooting east to naperville, west of chicago. if anyone has any previous experience with the area, towns, lodging, what to avoid etc., i'd apprecitate the input. we're not leaving for another 10 days or so, so hopefully the recent flooding won't be an issue.?. idk, as not being from around there, that too would be good to know from some of you local folk from ar, mo and s. il.
thanks ahead of time.

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post #2 of 12 Old 08-15-2013, 11:32 PM
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This is going to be a downer, but honestly I can't help it. In my opinion, all that part of the country is good for is taking a .22 rifle and going to all the bridges over the irrigation canals and shoot snakes and turtles off floating logs. And I wouldn't even do that in the humidity of August.

Cross the river into MS, go to the Vicksburg National Battlefield, talk to the ghosts there, and then take the Natchez Trace and figure out how to get from Memphis from there. The Arkansas side of the Mississippi River is no bargain -- not in visible history, people, food -- is what I'm saying. And I hate to have to say it.

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post #3 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 02:37 AM
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I've enjoyed riding most of the Great River Road at one time or another including to the headwaters in MN:
About the Great River Road - History and Overview of the National Scenic Byway along the Mississippi River

Just be sure you are on the IL side going past St. Louis. US34 is about small town USA from Burlington, IA
to Naperville, IL that misses some of the sprawl up here.

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post #4 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 09:06 AM
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If you can shoot past Chicago a bit, the roads in NW Illinois are great, and would be a nice way of cutting back east. North of there, all the way to the Twin Cities, you'll find more fun roads and great views.

I think it will be a nice trip.
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post #5 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 09:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dancer View Post
This is going to be a downer, but honestly I can't help it. In my opinion, all that part of the country is good for is taking a .22 rifle and going to all the bridges over the irrigation canals and shoot snakes and turtles off floating logs. And I wouldn't even do that in the humidity of August.

Cross the river into MS, go to the Vicksburg National Battlefield, talk to the ghosts there, and then take the Natchez Trace and figure out how to get from Memphis from there. The Arkansas side of the Mississippi River is no bargain -- not in visible history, people, food -- is what I'm saying. And I hate to have to say it.
I don't know much about shooting snakes and turtles but +1 on the rest. You are leaving the road right where it starts to get good. I would think about a diif trip or route as well.
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post #6 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 11:40 AM
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Hwy 79 from St Louis to Hannibal is a nice ride if you're going that far north.
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post #7 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 12:20 PM
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I'm retired Coast Guard and I was actually stationed in St Louis. I worked the aids to navigation on both the Missouri River and the Mississippi via a pusher tug and construction barge. You have to remember that the river is surrounded by vast flood plans and there are very few sections of roads running along the banks. The best you can do is ride from river town to river town.
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post #8 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 04:31 PM Thread Starter
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lol, dancer, that's what i'm looking for is honesty. i've read online articles similar. keep the alternate routes coming if you have any. i'll definately check out the ones suggested.
being from a western sub of chicago i know the riding is beautiful around galena, savana and on the iowa side going n. into prairie du chien on up to la crosse. but-we're not going that far north this trip. visiting family in fox valley area.
thanks again.

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post #9 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M02012Rider View Post
Hwy 79 from St Louis to Hannibal is a nice ride if you're going that far north.
mo2012rider,

that 79 looks like a good little route. let me know if you can recommend any other routes/rds shooting up from arkansas through mo leading to that that town just north of st. louis around troy.

same with you dancer since you're from ar.

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'07 honda shadow aero (sold)
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'07 kaw meanstreak (sold)
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'71 (?) honda z50 trail (first bike, wish i still had)
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post #10 of 12 Old 08-16-2013, 08:33 PM
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river road

duchess, I have been wanting to ride the Ozarks but have not gotten around to it. I do know that Eureka Springs in Arkansas has a great reputation as a motorcycle town. That whole area is good riding. 160 across the bottom of Mo. is the route several friends have used and liked. If you take it to Poplar Bluff and go east on 60 you will come to 51. I have ridden it from Marble Hill north. It is a nice twisty. Take it and cross into Illinois at Chester. When you cross the bridge there is a rest area with a Popeye statue. The Popeye creator was born in Chester. Take 3 north up to I 255, it is interstate but it is the best way around St. Louis traffic. I drove a tractor trailer in St. Louis for 30 years, it is the best way around. When you get to I 270 north of Collinsville take it west back to route 3. 3 north runs along the levee. There is a Lewis and Clark monument you can go up in just north of 270. It is new and I haven't done it yet. Go left on 143 at Wood River to Alton. 100 goes north out of Alton to Grafton. It is the only part of The Great River Road that I've been on that is really great. It runs right on the bank of the river with great views. At Brussels you can cross the free ferry or stay straight on 100. I would probably stay on 100, it has more curves. When you cross the bridge at Hardin, Il if you are hungry turn left and go to the Riverdock Café, they have good food. If not follow 100 to the right to Kampsville and go left on 96.
Take that to 54 and turn left to Louisiana, Mo. When you cross the bridge at Louisiana take the 1st left and the next left, go1 block up the hill to a little park. It has a great view of the Mississippi river. From there take 79 up to Hannibal, which is Mark Twains birthplace. I did this last week and there was a detour about 6 miles south of Hannibal which took you out to 61 and back up. That's as far as I have been that direction. I have ridden parts of 24 in Il that are good. And I used to drive 29 north out of Peoria in the truck, it follows the Illinois river, it was a pretty drive. That gets you to Peru, Il. If you are from Fox Valley you probably know your way in. If you have any questions let me know, or pm your phone and I'll call. Also the Cal-Sci wind shield I bought from you is working well for me. Thanks, Dave
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