2012 Time to Work, Time to Play, & Time to Serve travel blog

Political signs seen along I44

Do you think these signs have anything to do with one another?

Route 66 heading toward the Big Piney River

Not sure why this was here as there was no construction in...

Worlds Largest Bed?

A Winnie Brave (not ours) that looks like it got too far...

Fall colors over the graves of veterans at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery

Winnie rests during lunch

Crossing the Mississippi for the final time on this trip

Barge heading upriver in front of a sand bar

Rain on the interstate

Tiny church off I64 near Nashville, IL

Replica of the Washington Monument in Mt. Vernon, IL

Traffic sign art in Mt. Vernon

Fall colors and corn stubble in field

Combine harvesting soy beans

Rend Lake

Golf Ball and Tee water tower

Winnie, Vince, and the neighbors at Whittington Woods


Today’s travel was almost entirely along the interstates in an attempt to make up time and distance. This is the headlong rush home from this point on as I have some commitments next week and we need to vote the following week. Speaking of that, on the trip up I44, Romney appears to have won the billboard race, 3-0 with one vote for Ron Paul. My prediction is that Missouri goes Romney/Ryan.

We took one little diversion from I44 to Route 66 in an attempt to visit the Devil’s Elbow Bridge across the Big Piney River. It’s located on Teardrop Rd., a detour off the later Route 66 near Fort Leonard Wood. The road was narrow and we weren’t sure if Winnie would fit or if there was an opportunity to turn around so we passed on the excursion. It’s another one we’ll add to the list for a future trip. The section of Route 66 that we drove on was a 4 lane divided highway and was used until the 1980’s. We got onto I44 again and put the hammer down. We’re sorry we didn’t get to stop for a visit with Tom and Pat who were so hospitable on our first trip through the area. See you next October in Atlanta.

We stopped for lunch near the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery near the Mississippi River. Today was a busy day for military funerals as there were at least 4 funeral processions that went by in the half-hour or so that we were parked. After leaving the Cemetery, we headed across the Mississippi River for the 6th time on this trip. Water levels are still extremely low in the river as there were lots of sand bars and obstruction visible. I imagine it's been alittle tough navigating the Mississippi this summer and fall.

For the first time on this trip (well over 7,000 miles and 3.5 months), it rained while we were driving. It started just before we stopped for lunch and continued for a short distance into Illinois. It was windy and the skies were threatening a thunderstorm as big bolts of lightning could be seen off in the distance to the north. The thunderstorms never materialized, but the winds continued to buffet Winnie as we drove along I64 across southern Illinois.

We ended the day at Whittington Woods RV Park in Whittington, IL. It’s near Rend Lake, a large Corps of Engineers impoundment. The RV park is quite nice with the sites nestled among the oak trees. You’ll also see in the pictures that we had some unusual neighbors, a flock of chickens. There were also a bunch of squirrels running from tree to tree.

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