Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mighty Mississippi, Mighty Fiance

After our indoor camping adventure (post here) and hiking to see some breathtaking views (post here), it only seemed right that we needed to explore the big river that forms the eastern side of my town. 

Since we had seen it from the top of the Minnesota side, we decided to go find out what it looked like from Wisconsin...so we crossed the big bridge (it looks like a vertical white line on the right half of this pic).

And we drove about 30 minutes. We saw some bluffs and some marshland, but nothing too exciting. We did stop at a gas station for drinks and got a snack of a veggie tray, a cheese stick, and a couple beef sticks. That's the great thing about Wisconsin...they really support their beef and dairy industries! Yummmmmm.
Wisconsin also has nice flowers ;)
On our way back to my apartment, the fiance got some great shots on the Minnesota side again.

So pretty! We knew that there are bike trails all along the Mississippi, and we brought our bikes, so we went out with the hopes of hitting a nearby state park. The first part of the trip was along a park road that was mostly deserted.
Bordered by the river and a nature reserve, it was quiet and peaceful. Every once in a while, the trees would open up, and boats and sometimes a houseboat.
This one was particularly awesome.
Eventually we ended up on a county highway with a wide shoulder. Evidently this was part of the trail, but it was a little busy for the fiance's taste. He kept telling me that we were going to get run over. Plus, it was super rolling hills, and our Iowa legs weren't used to it. After 15 miles, we saw a stopping point and pulled over.

We found one of the locks and dams on the Mississippi!

There are several of them, starting up by St. Paul, and going all the way down the river. We learned that it takes 5 days to go upriver from St. Louis to St.Paul by barge!

We sat down to eat our PB&J sandwiches and PB filled pretzel snacks.

Then, we got sooo lucky because a tow came through to push a barge through the lock!

It was a lot of fun and a perfect break from the bike ride. We turned around and biked the 15 miles back to my apartment. Kudos to the fiance, who accomplished his longest bike ride to date! I rewarded him with microbrews at a local brew pub that is within walking distance of my new place! Score!

Well, that's the last of this recap, but we'll be going back over July 4th weekend. Who wants to come? Bring your own sleeping bag and I'll share my kitchen!

Back at you with some science by the end of the week. I've come across some really interesting research on toxicity of components of our food!


  1. A micro brew within walking distance?! Can you say best apartment location ever?! Wait - was the micro brew good???

  2. What's a house boat? And isn't it a week day - how's the job searching going?!

  3. @Kier. It was AWESOME. They only have 3 varieties, but they have about 12 beers on tap besides their own. We tried all three and they were tasty!

    @Suza :) A houseboat is a floating house. Some people live in their boats...and the one in the picture really looks like a house, but it's probably a pontoon boat with the house built on top. The weekday comment? I think you're asking about July 4th - which is a weekday, but we get a long weekend here in the states, so we'll go up on Friday and come back on Tuesday AM? And, I have a job lined up. I got my contract yesterday and everything. I am going to be an assistant professor of chemistry :) Woot woot!

    Thanks for the comments, ladies!

  4. Great shots of the locks and dams they came out really well.