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Best Bridge Across the Mississippi

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Best Bridge Across the Mississippi

Old 05-11-20, 09:03 PM
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jamawani 
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Best Bridge Across the Mississippi

(Because there really needs to be a fresh thread.)

My vote for the best bridge across the Mississippi is the Centennial Bridge between Rock Island, Illinois and Davenport, Iowa.
3 reasons -
1. It is a beautiful arched bridge.
2. It has a safe, wide walkway/bikeway.
3. The Mississippi River runs east-to-west in this stretch -
So, there are beautiful bike trails along the river for miles on either side.







On a different note -
The best ferry across the Mississippi used to be the Golden Eagle Ferry.
Long ago - i.e. 1980s - they used one of the last side-wheelers.
Still operates - still pleasant.
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Old 05-11-20, 09:14 PM
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Itasca State Park, in northern Minnisota
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Old 05-12-20, 06:10 AM
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Is there another bridge from Davenport? We stayed there in Ď99 during a Northern Tier tour. On a rest day I rode to Moline via Rock Island to visit the John Deere Center. Have no recollection of riding that bridge, but it was so long ago.
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Old 05-12-20, 06:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
Itasca State Park, in northern Minnisota
Been there. Done that.
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Old 05-12-20, 06:46 AM
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There is the Rock Island Arsenal Bridge -
which is a low-slung, combined railroad bridge.
Ugly as sin.
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Old 05-12-20, 06:59 AM
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Perhaps apt for a little Larkin Poe?

Larkin Poe paying homage to Mississippi
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Old 05-12-20, 10:51 AM
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Can't say the best until you've seen the worst. This is one long haul.

https://youtu.be/CvhpyuSDHSo#t=20s

Last edited by robow; 05-12-20 at 11:04 AM.
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Old 05-12-20, 12:33 PM
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I grew up in Minneapolis, I can't remember how many different bridges I have crossed over the Mississippi, either in vehicles or on a motorcycle. But now that I think of it I can't remember ever bicycling across more than one of them. There were a couple that instead of a paved deck had steel grating that would make your motorcycle wobble all over the place if you had not remembered it was there.

Probably my favorite was Washington Ave bridge, that split the University campus into two parts and I walked across that bridge hundreds of times between classes. Not sure how many times I rode a bicycle across it.
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Old 05-12-20, 07:47 PM
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I kinda wish someone from St. Louis would chime in. There are actually several bridges there, it looked like, but I think I took one of the wrong ones. 🙄😉

And thatís hardly even a River, way up in Minnesota. 🤪 They have to travel South awhile, to get to be big rivers. 😁😉
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Old 05-12-20, 10:14 PM
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In St. Louis, you should always take the historic Eads Bridge if you are biking X-USA.
The supports are underneath with no superstructure - so you have a panoramic view of the Arch and the city.
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Old 05-12-20, 11:04 PM
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We've got two bridges over the Mississippi that i ride across regularly. The Julien Dubuque bridge crosses from Iowa to Illinois, and has a seperate footpath away from the automobile traffic.
The other bridge connects Iowa to Wisconsin, and is a 4-Lane divided highway with a fairly wide shoulder (albeit with drainage grates and usually a fair amout of road debris). I regularly ride a tri-state loop, starting across one bridge, crossing the state line on the other side of the river, and returning on the other bridge back into Iowa. Both bridges offer good views of the river and bluffs, but i think most people would prefer the aesthetics of the Julien Dubuque bridge. Interestingly, a lot of locals despise riding across this bridge's seperated footpath, as it is not very wide, and enclosed by chain link fencing - i have no problems with it.

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Old 05-12-20, 11:27 PM
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Centennial Bridge looks great esp when there are so many bridges than forbid cyclists. DC-area riders can't reach the beach without waiting & paying for $$ taxi vans to cross the big Chesapeake bridges.
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Old 05-13-20, 12:19 AM
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Originally Posted by SalsaShark View Post
We've got two bridges over the Mississippi that i ride across regularly. The Julien Dubuque bridge crosses from Iowa to Illinois, and has a seperate footpath away from the automobile traffic.
The other bridge connects Iowa to Wisconsin, and is a 4-Lane divided highway with a fairly wide shoulder (albeit with drainage grates and usually a fair amout of road debris). I regularly ride a tri-state loop, starting across one bridge, crossing the state line on the other side of the river, and returning on the other bridge back into Iowa. Both bridges offer good views of the river and bluffs, but i think most people would prefer the aesthetics of the Julien Dubuque bridge. Interestingly, a lot of locals despise riding across this bridge's seperated footpath, as it is not very wide, and enclosed by chain link fencing - i have no problems with it.
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Old 05-13-20, 03:53 AM
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Originally Posted by jamawani View Post
There is the Rock Island Arsenal Bridge -
which is a low-slung, combined railroad bridge.
Ugly as sin.
Thanks. Definitely remember riding that.
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Old 05-13-20, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by boomhauer View Post
Well that looks mighty familiar - Illinois straight ahead!
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Old 05-13-20, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by SalsaShark View Post
Well that looks mighty familiar - Illinois straight ahead!
Yup, It did feel a little strange riding on it, but I don't know why.
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Old 05-13-20, 11:00 AM
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I grew up in New Orleans. The best way to cross the Mississippi was the Canal Street Ferry. It gives you great views of the city and the French quarter.

https://www.neworleans.com/plan/tran...algiers-ferry/

I visited L. Itasca when I rode across the US on the Adventure Cyclist northern tier. For a New Orleans boy, it sure was fun walking across the Mississippi River.

I live in central Iowa now and I enjoy checking out all the river towns in the eastern part of the state. Plus the driftless region (SW WI, SE MN, and NW IA) has great scenery, hiking, and biking. I'll have to check out the Centennial Bridge. Thanks to jamawani for starting this thread.
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Old 05-13-20, 07:09 PM
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Just because I rode it the other day, LaCrosse, WI,

There used to be only the single Cass St. bridge but they added a brother a few years back. Nice ride from LaCrescent MN across the river.

City workers were actually cleaning off the gutters Tuesday with water trucks, power washers, and by shovel.


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Old 05-13-20, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by SalsaShark View Post
Well that looks mighty familiar - Illinois straight ahead!

ive lived around Dubuque for almost 20 years now but have yet to try this bridge. With the Devils lettuce now being legal in Illinois, I would expect more bike traffic...
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Old 05-13-20, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by jamawani View Post
There is the Rock Island Arsenal Bridge -
which is a low-slung, combined railroad bridge.
Ugly as sin.

true, but it gives it charm

rode it last year for the Tour de Brew
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Old 05-13-20, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Toadmeister View Post
ive lived around Dubuque for almost 20 years now but have yet to try this bridge. With the Devils lettuce now being legal in Illinois, I would expect more bike traffic...
They installed a bunch of new cameras on the bridge this last year to help keep track of the traffic crossing for this very reason. There is a lot more bike traffic and new riders this spring, with people looking for things to do to occupy their time with the social distancing regulations in place. I rarely encounter anybody riding or walking on the bridge, though.
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Old 05-14-20, 08:17 AM
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Chain Of Rocks has got to be on the list. Car sized but no cars.
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Old 05-14-20, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Chain Of Rocks has got to be on the list. Car sized but no cars.
Added bonus, it is on Old Route 66.

Gateway Trailnet (now Trailnet - trailnet.org) made this happen.
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Old 05-19-20, 08:01 AM
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I remember the bridge at Chester IL as being unpleasant with a poor surface, no shoulder, lots of traffic, bad expansion joints, and so on. It was a wait for a lull in traffic, take the lane, and make a fast run for it kind of situation. Far from ideal and probably many folks nightmare stuff, but it didn't scar me for life or anything.

I forget what the bridge was like at Baton Rouge, so it must not have been too bad. I think it had a nice shoulder, but my recollection is hazy.
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Old 05-19-20, 08:47 AM
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I was really glad to be westbound out of Chester because it was mostly downhill! I suspect that bridge dates back to the WPA. Nice view from the middle of the river, but no place to stop to take a picture.
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