Day #76. Smack dab on the Mississippi!

LOCATION:  Near Muscatine, Iowa in SE part of state
CAMPGROUND:  Clark’s Ferry Army Corp of Engineers Campground at Mississippi River Pool 16.  One of the best campgrounds we have stayed in!  Our site is right on the Mississippi.  Most sites have river views.  Spanking clean bathrooms/showers.  Electricity.  Water nearby.  Dump station.  Fire pit and picnic table.  Perfectly level, paved, long site.  All for $10/night!  5 stars out of 5
WEATHER:  Mostly cloudy.  High 74

We left Ardon Creek Winery, last night’s Harvest Host stay, fairly early as rain was predicted and we didn’t want to get stuck in a wet field.  The owners told us that they once had to pull a stuck RV out with a big tractor.  Yikes!

Since it is early in the week, we gambled that our site would be available for an early check-in.  Yes, it was vacant, so we moved in even though it was still early AM.  Our site is perfect – We are just a few feet away from the Mississippi River. 

We enjoyed a quiet morning watching river traffic. 

We went in to nearby Muscatine in search of a brew pub.  They do have one, but it wasn’t open yet.  So, we found a fun bar with a lot of local beers, located in a very old-looking building.  After lunch, we strolled around the downtown.  Many of the old buildings have been preserved nicely.

We learned that Muscatine was once the “pearl button capital of the world”. Making the buttons out of the river’s shiny mussels was a huge business.  They harvested all of the mussels, and they have now mostly disappeared. 

We stopped at this grist mill, one of the first in the country, built to mill lumber and later grain. 

Back at the campground, I walked around.  Even though not many sites are occupied today, every single one has a “reserved” sign on it for this upcoming Memorial Day weekend.  I’m sure today’s quiet atmosphere will morph into craziness then. 

DINNER:  Tex-Mex rice and beans with chopped up brat pieces.  Side was mushrooms stuffed with a cheesy spinach mix.  All quite good.

BOOK:  “Piece of My Heart” by Peter Robinson.  This is a British detective series I come back to.  I enjoy the characters and especially like reference to the pubs and scenery of North Yorkshire where we did a housesitting assignment.  4 stars out of 5

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