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Old 07-16-2011, 08:39 PM   #1
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Down the River Road

Carole and me are planning a fall trip down the River Road beginning
in late Sept for a few weeks. Has anyone been down the "river road"
with a big rig and can help in a little planning based on your experience.

The river road runs the length of the Mississippi River starting in
Minnesota and ending at or close to the Louisiana delta area. We will
be starting in Lacrosse Wisc.





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Old 09-17-2011, 06:38 AM   #2
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We will also be going from Hot Springs Arkansas to New Orleans on the next to last leg of our trip
Would be interested in following the Mississippi
Best route??
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Old 09-17-2011, 06:57 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveSkinner View Post
We will also be going from Hot Springs Arkansas to New Orleans on the next to last leg of our trip
Would be interested in following the Mississippi
Best route??
US Hwy 61, run alongside or close to the river the entire length. In places it is a two lane highway with all the hazards of that type of road. Needless to say it does run through a lot of small towns, in some cases the streets are narrow and tight.
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Old 09-17-2011, 08:05 AM   #4
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There's not a lot on the river road from Memphis to Vicksburg accept the casinos at Tunica. If you have the time I would sugjest you take I55 to 302 east to I78 east to Tupelo. From Tupelo drive the Natchez Trace Parkway to I20 west to Vicksburg. Nachez Trace is a Well kept wide two lane road with wonderful scenery and lots of historic things along the way. What ever you do dont miss the battle feild museum at Vicksburg. Three years ago I tride to drive the river road from I10 to St louis but the river was high and I had to take 61 and was very disapointed with the part I mentioned. It was nothing but flat farmland.
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Old 09-18-2011, 01:17 AM   #5
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Thanks for the advice, I'll do exactly that
Ss
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Old 09-18-2011, 07:37 AM   #6
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Thanks for the advice, I'll do exactly that
Ss
I am a river pilot and it is correct, not a lot to see except dry parched farmland from Memphis to New Orleans on Hwy 61. Any views of the river will be after you cross the levees and with a MH I dont advise that. I crew change at places like Dennis Landing, Rosedale, Catfish Point, Old River and have to use Hwy 61 to get to them.

To me, the best river for driving and seeing is along the Ohio River, many of the towns on the Ohio river have main streets that are alongside the river banks.

On the Mississippi River the best is on the Upper Mississippi after one gets above St Louis (the river from Cairo down is the Lower Mississippi and from Cairo to Minnesota it is the Upper Mississippi).

Before 9-11 could go the visitors center at almost any lock and damn, now only a few on the Upper Miss allow visitors. Watching a towboat pass through a lock is an interesting experience but its slow and once you have seen one, they are all mostly the same from a tourist viewpoint. From my viewpoint there is nothing dull about a locking.

Enjoy your trip on the Natchez Trace Parkway, there are some interesting things to see on that route. For sure don't miss Vicksburg. Well worth it.

One other minor detail for the Natchez Trace is the low speed limits and they are ridigly enforced.
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Old 09-18-2011, 07:49 AM   #7
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We did the upper route from Duluth, Minn to Dubuque,Ia a few years back. Scenic, relaxing ride, never had an issue with size, lots of quaint little towns.
We drove the Wisconsin side on route 35 I believe.
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Old 09-18-2011, 12:19 PM   #8
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I have boated the Upper Mississippi River and have followed the river road by vehicle in most areas. The river road will bounce back and forth from east bank to the west bank depending on how well the area is settled. In many areas you can follow within a few feet of the banks to several miles away and out of sight of the river. Many areas of the river will cause extreme low flood prone land as well as high bluffs. The thing to remember is the first highways to the USA were the rivers. That means the past history of our country was recorded from land settled on and near the rivers. Small towns such as Dubuque, Iowa have spent loads of money making them a tourist draw, while others have completly ignored the river front and the oldest most deprived area of their towns have become eyesores. Yet if you travel 12 miles upstream from the river along the Galena, River you will find a delightful tourist haven of antigue shops and history where in its heyday Riverboat paddlewheelers docked downtown and the city was more vibrant than Chicago! Check out the John Deere Museum in the Quad Cities. A stop in Keokuk, Iowa will allow you to view the deepest lock on the upper Mississippi. Hanibal, Mo will give you a look at Mark Twains boyhood haunts. St Louis Arch and all the area has to offer will be there for you. How about a stop to visit Graceland, in Memphis. Or the Plantations along the River near New Orleans? Following the River Road will be difficult at times as it is not one continous highway, yet following the river and taking the time to explore is a great vacation!
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Old 09-18-2011, 10:20 PM   #9
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There are lots of RV Travel clubs ... several of them have Caravans that follow the Mississippi River ... this will give you some ideas of what the caravans visit as they make their way from Minnesota to Louisiana

WIT Caravan information

You might also check out travel clubs by Adventure Caravans, Good Sam, FMCA.
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Old 09-19-2011, 07:06 AM   #10
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It's actually called the Great River Road, and the best part is the drive north from St. Louis. As others have said, it gets flatter the further south you go. We have driven the route twice towing a race car trailer behind a Safari TREK with no problems. Great River Road Interactive Map | Frommers.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by Badgerman View Post
Carole and me are planning a fall trip down the River Road beginning
in late Sept for a few weeks. Has anyone been down the "river road"
with a big rig and can help in a little planning based on your experience.

The river road runs the length of the Mississippi River starting in
Minnesota and ending at or close to the Louisiana delta area. We will
be starting in Lacrosse Wisc.





Carole & Ted
06 Camelot
07 Envoy tow
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