Day 31, June 29
Measurements: turbidity at the confluence of Harper Slough and the Mississippi channel proper: 57cm.
I woke today in the motel room attached to the Spillway bar and grill in Haper's Ferry, Iowa.
A few things about last night, which happened after yesterday's post. I found a channel that was playing Men in Black 3, and watched the end of it. I had a hard time actually getting to sleep, weirdly. And before I went to bed (but after I'd taken my pants off for the first time) one of the guys from the bar who'd seemed impressed by my trip knocked on the door and offered me an envelope, in case I needed some cash for the journey. Inside was $180 in twenty dollar bills. I am not making this up.
This morning I got up rather late, after 8am. I went to the local everything-store (combination convenience/gas/grocery/liquor/bait shop) to get batteries for my headlamp and sundries. The owner, Barry, gave me a beer coozy with the name of the store on it.
I put in in Harper's Ferry, not on the main channel but on "Harper's Slough," to the west of the main channel. I paddled this down to the confluence with the rest of the riverr, then a few miles further to the confluence with the Yellow River, and Effigy Mounds national monument.
I got out there, just a bit up the Yellow, and walked to the park, then up the trails to the mounds. More on that in another post.
Several hours later, I came back to the boat and put in on the Yellow, then got back out on the Miss. I still had a headwind, but had a bit of lee from the right bank. I pushed along past a couple of towns on the Iowa side, with Prairie du Chien unseen over on the Wisconsin side. At McGregor, a guy on a pier beckoned to me, and after the normal back-and-forth (where'd you start? Itasca. Where are you going? The Gulf) he offered me a place to stay and a shower, for free. I thanked him but kept on.
I made it to the confluence with the Wisconsin, and am writing this from the island right at that spot. I've only made it about 17 miles today. Oh well.
For dinner, I had something pretty amazing. Linguine with onions, garlic, sundried tomatoes, mushrooms (dehydrated), and the fresh asparagus Shaun gave me the day before yesterday. Oh, it was good.
Tomorrow: pushing on downstream. We'll see how far.