Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The Great River Road from Hell Part Deux

Week 2.

We have settled a little bit here in the Quad cities. We have some business to take care of on Monday and a visit with someone on Tuesday so we are just chillin. Literally and figuratively.

Saturday we did some sight seeing in the Quad cities. We found the Camping World to get a new sewer vent cover and then drove along the river to see some of the flooding. Of all of the years coming to the Quad cities I have always wanted to see the Rock Island Arsenal.
Any history or military buffs might recognize the name. It is a Army post that has been around for a long time. They produce weapons and weapon systems for the military. They have a huge collection of firearms that just gives you that warm fuzzy feeling inside when you gaze at them.

I was like a kid in a candy store with my nose pressed against the glass, drooling. "Clean up in the gun aisle" was heard over the intercom.
It's been awhile since I have taken a cannon photo so here you go. After the museum we went to find the Mississippi River Center. That also happened to be on the Rock Island Arsenal. We were in luck because when we got there there was a barge going through the locks. The River center is at Lock and Dam No. 15.

It is amazing watching those big barges go through there. It is a tight fit. Just a couple of feet of room to spare on each side. We were talking to the Army Corps of Engineers person who said that because of the flooding down river, 2 of the locks were closed. So there wasn't much traffic on the river. In fact this lock and dam was still working but the difference in height of the river from one side to the other was only about 6 inches.

Trestle bridge over the Mississippi.

Sunday we wanted to do some shopping. Lisa found an outlet mall 1 short hour away. So off we went. She did not have much luck finding clothes, but I did. Then she wanted to find a Gander Outdoors and that was about 40 minutes north of the outlet mall. For those that don't know about Gander Mountain, Gander Mountain went bankrupt.  Apparently Camping World has bought Gander Mountain and has started opening some as Gander Outdoors. As camping people who may belong to Good Sam, you can use your Good Sam card at Gander Outdoors for an additional 10% off. They have some great deals. We have found two so far. One in La Crosse, Wis. and one in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. One good example is this. I like to shoot 9mm. At Gander Outdoors they have a box of Remington 9mm FMJ  after the discount for $9.29 a box. BANG! BANG! BANG!

Driving back to Davenport we passed the Herbert Hoover National Monument and Presidential Library. So we had to stop for a quick look. I got my National Parks Passport Book stamped and learned a little about a president I really didn't know much about.
Herbert Hoover's house he was born in.

A look down the street.
He came from a very humble beginning.

His final resting place. We would have gone to his library but there must have been some kind of event going on. There were no parking spots left and we were getting to the end of the day anyways.

The Great River Road or Bust

We have abandoned the "Great River Road" for fear of turning this journey into the Donner Party. Actually there are many factors that have conspired against us, forcing us to give up the dream.

#1. The weather. It has been unseasonably cold and rainy for this time of year. Maybe we have become wimps. Who knows?

#2. With all of the rain came flooding leading to closed campgrounds and closed roads. Detouring us in circles just to get to the next road that happens to be closed.

#3. The "Great River Road" itself. The road is old and in horrendous shape. We lost one sewer vent to low hanging trees already. Which brings us to the main reason for abandoning the road.

Todays travel promised to be a nice one. The sun was shining, although it was still cold. We left Davenport, Iowa headed to Ft. Madison, Iowa. Lots of road construction on that first leg of the journey which led to some pretty rough roads. Roads that I would assume would be called smooth if they were up in Alaska. However they were in Iowa and the bumps were bone jarring. We also had one of our shades come crashing down from the bumps. 

We stopped for a pit stop and Lisa was in using the facilities. I said to her that we were going to be awhile because we had a minor problem behind our RV. She said "a flat?" No, just take a look.
It looks like our underbelly came loose and has been dragging for awhile. I know it was loose in Minnesota and I fixed those areas with changle iron so everything behind the area I fixed came loose. Well upon closer inspection, things didn't quite look right under there.
In fact if you look at that area that is all black, that is where our fresh water tank should be. But it appears to be missing. We have no idea where it fell off because there was no crash or sounds of wreckage. Nothing. Our camper is literally falling apart on this road.
So I threw some straps on it and we headed down the road, away from "The Great River Road from Hell." You can see the changle iron that I used to fix the under belly is still fine.

It is always an adventure with us. It's like the old "Hee Haw" song. "If it weren't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all. Woe, despair and agony on me."


  1. Oh man...sorry about the loss of your tank and damage to your underbelly. Good luck and safe travels!

    1. It is all part of the journey I guess. Thanks.

  2. Okay, I feel a little bad. Not because you lost your fresh water tank. That sucks. I feel a little sorry because Barb and I were laughing when we read that it went missing. We should not have laughed, karma will probably get us for that. You should probably have Lisa run to Home Depot and pick up some more "changle iron".

    1. She will have to. I thought of a great idea. Install a backup camera so we can watch stuff fall off. Your day will come my friend.

  3. Wow - so sorry to hear about your tank (i guess it’s your former tank now). Seriously - it’s hard to imagine that you wouldn’t hear or see anything - or that no one attempted to stop you. Good luck with repairs!

  4. Wow, so sorry to learn about this damage and the missing water tank! How do these things happen?? We lost an awning off our pop-up trailer somewhere between Twin Falls and Boise a few years back. Never saw it, didn't hear it. Nobody flipped us off. So weird!

  5. Very cool place! I'd have a hard time getting Steve out of there! I can't believe someone didn't see your tank falling and let you know? Even stranget that you wouldn't have heard/felt/seen it? Then again, we've had things fall off before and wondered the same!

    1. It was a very cool place. If someone would have stopped us anyways.