Saturday, July 21, 2012

Iowa Has Mountains, Who Knew!!

After leaving Osage, Iowa I checked the map again. There was a nice county road going down the east side of Iowa that looked interesting. According to my Rand McNally Road Atlas it was one of the "Red Ribbon" scenic routes. That means the road would be scenic as well as having good restaurants and possibly antique shops or other tourist type locations of interest. The road fit into our basic route, so off we went down Highway 52. We were not long on the road when we found mountains. Who would have thought Iowa had mountains. This was one of those roads that you start down and wish you had a motorcycle with you. And on this trip it was one step worse. We had a sportster in the trailer. Ward kept threatening to pull over and take it out for a spin. But we were under time constraints to get to Woodstock by Sunday.
The road kept twisting and turning, rising and falling and showing us some great scenery. Then it went down into a valley and into the town of Guttenberg, which was right along the edge of the Mighty Mississippi River. It looked like a wonderful little tourist town. One we would love to stop in if we had the time. It got added to the list of places to go, next time we were in the neighbourhood.
We spent the night in Dubuque, Iowa. Again, add that town to the list. We stopped counting motorcycles because there were just too many. The roads in that area were screaming to be ridden on two wheels.
The next day started with the same wonderful scenery as the last, and just got better. Motorcycles were everywhere on the highways, there must have been a bike run that day. And what perfect roads, we added this whole stretch of highway to our list.
We were in Illinois now, and soon came to the town of Galena. By this time I was just kicking myself that I didn't go and get my camera. I should have been taking pictures of these roads all along this highway. The town of Galena, Illinois was amazing. The highway took us right through downtown.

The buildings seemed all to be very old, and not of this century at all. We passed signs for Ulysses S. Grant's house and a few other famous people. But there was no time to stop. Ward mentioned we would come back this way and spend a bit of time in the area. What was that about best made plans?
Oh well, another time. And Galena is definitely on the list of places to come back to, most definitely.
Just as we rolled into Rockford, Illinois we got a flat tire on the trailer. Ward pulled the motorhome over into a parking lot and we got out to assess the damage. We have a great CAA plan that we could use, if needed. But we didn't want to use it unnecessarily. I got on the internet, I just love my mobile internet stick, it comes in so handy sometimes. I googled tire places in Rockford and found one a block away from the lot we pulled into. We called them to make sure they had trailer tires and limped our rig over. An hour later we had two new tires on the trailer, and a spare tire in the trailer. It's a good thing we didn't stop earlier in those scenic towns. The extra time was needed for this repair during daylight hours.
Before nightfall we were in Woodstock. The next day would be the swap meet. Vendor set-up 6am, you could pay at the gate.

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