Friday, August 12, 2016

8/12 National Mississippi River Museum & the American Queen Riverboat

It rained a LOT yesterday and the mosquitos are out in full force.  Because I react so badly to bites, I have been mostly staying inside my motorhome, so since the rain had stopped, I decided to get out and drive to nearby Dubuque, IA, to visit the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium.  It's only about 20 miles away, so an easy drive. 

It was dark inside so some of my photos are a little fuzzy.  But I really liked the riverboat exhibits.

These two chairs came from riverboats.  I can imagine them in a salon on a fancy boat and Mark Twain sitting in one of them.

I went up to the observation area on top of the museum to take this photo of the visiting American Queen Riverboat.  It is just here for a few hours and is a modern reproduction of an old riverboat, as opposed to the Mississippi Queen, which is the real thing.

This riverboat outside of the museum IS the real thing and used to haul gravel.

Obviously, this is NOT a riverboat.  It was made by someone named Pabst, but it certainly looked a lot like my dad's old Chris Craft!  Other than the outboard motor, of course.

This was part of the aquarium exhibit. 

And this is the great view of this lazy female alligator!  Just taking it easy.

An outside view of one of the museum buildings with a big paddlewheel.

And this old ship across the river certainly looked authentic.  Here is a site I found that describes it:

Here is the docked American Queen.  

These tour buses follow the riverboat as it goes up and down the river.  They offer free tours of whatever city the riverboat docks at for passengers.

This is a local tour boat. 

I was amazed to have lots of good parking next to the museum.  Even more amazing is that no one blocked me in.  Note that I have parked so that the front of my vehicle is angled out, just in case.  Poor old bike just gets dragged around everywhere I go.

I had chatted with several of the riverboat passengers and knew they were heading upstream to near Minneapolis, which meant they would go past my campground late that afternoon, so I raced home and took a photo of this "tow."  Along the Mississippi, they call it a tow even though a tug or "towboat" is actually pushing a bunch of barges.  Unfortunately, the river channel is closer to the other side than to our campground, so I had to use my long telephoto lens.

The sign on the towboat says it is the Deanna Ann.

And here comes the American Queen, heading toward us before she made a left turn! 

Anyway, it was a good day, both at the museum and seeing the riverboat head upriver. The passengers I talked to in Dubuque said the staterooms were very nice and they enjoyed the slow speed of only 8 MPH--very relaxing!

1 comment:

  1. What great pics and what looks to be a wonderful trip! I look forward to reading more of your blog.