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Airing out after the flood, July 24, 2008

Airing out after the flood, July 24, 2008

The year 1993 is remembered as the year of the Great Flood on the upper Mississippi River. But in June 2008 at Keithsburg, Illinois, the river broke all previous records, rising to 24.49 feet (over 10 feet above flood stage). River water poured over the flood-control levee and inundated the town, ruining many buildings; and after the water's retreat, the river left behind water lines, mud, and sand.


American Bottoms from the Illinois Bluffs

American Bottoms from the Illinois Bluffs

Downtown St. Louis, Missouri, is visible far in the distance across a vast floodplain east of the Mississippi River, known as the American Bottoms. The Missouri River joins the Mississippi River a few miles northeast of St. Louis.


Commercial fishing gear, winter 1990-91

Commercial fishing gear, winter 1990-91

The boat ramp at Grafton, Illinois, is at the confluence of the Illinois River and Mississippi River. The islands opposite the ramp and across the Illinois River are favorite daytime perching areas for overwintering bald eagles. The far shoreline, across the Mississippi River, is St. Charles County, Missouri.


Middle Mississippi River at Fountain Bluff

Middle Mississippi River at Fountain Bluff

The Middle Mississippi River is defined as the section between St. Louis, Missouri, and Cairo, Illinois. Here, the river is tightly constricted by levees and wing dams. This photograph was taken from Fountain Bluff, which is a satellite of the Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois.


Mississippi River Headwaters

Mississippi River Headwaters

The Mississippi River is a small, clear-water stream as it flows northward from Lake Itasca in northern Minnesota. This photograph was taken just north of the 32,000-acre Lake Itasca State Park.


North woods headwaters of the Mississippi River

North woods headwaters of the Mississippi River

Lake Itasca, in the north woods of Minnesota, is the source of the Mississippi River.


Snags

Snags


Trempealeau Mountain, Upper Mississippi River

Trempealeau Mountain, Upper Mississippi River

View from Brady's Bluff toward the Mississippi River Valley and Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge.


Upper Mississippi River Backwaters

Upper Mississippi River Backwaters

This photograph was taken in 1978, on a motorcycle trip I took while on a mere one-week vacation, during the period when I worked at Sabin Robbins Paper Company.


Watching the River Flow, July 23, 2007

Watching the River Flow, July 23, 2007

Bear Creek Recreation Area is owned the by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It is adjacent to the Great River National Wildlife Refuge, just north of Quincy, Illinois.