The May-June issue is sold out online, but is still available at many bookstores and other retail stores.
Read stories from past issues of Big River
John Banvard's Big Idea
Imagine a roll of canvas, the visible portion the size of a movie screen, twelve feet high. A massive scroll, turned by a crank, pulls an ever-changing panorama across your field of vision. The basic concept is similar to a movie projector or videocassettes — a moving image is unwound from one reel onto the other as it is viewed. This is the first movie — if we're being generous.
Each spring, when channels rise, buds swell and birds sing, river educators from the National Park Service and its partners bring boatloads of students to the river in the Twin Cities. Now celebrating 20 years, Big River Journey has hosted more than 70,000 students on these in finely orchestrated explorations of the river’s science and heritage.
One of the greatest treasures in thee Driftless Area — the heart of the American heartland — is hiding right under our feet.
Explore a Driftless Area Cave
Although Coldwater Cave is not open to the public, there are several caves in the Driftless Area that are. Most of these caves provide guided tours. Some are private and some are operated by the state. You can check hours, prices and other details online.
Illinois has closed its state-owned caves to prevent the spread of white nose syndrome, a fatal disease of bats.
See more photos and read the whole story
Call 507-454-5949 for info on digital subscriptions.
See Highlights for this issue's Table of Contents.
Night-time bowfishing events OKd for the Upper Mississippi Refuge in June and July. Press Release (pdf)
Contact Big River
What's it like to work on a towboat? Deck on Deck is a first-hand account of life on river towboats in the 1970s and 80s. These stories will entertain you as Bob Deck recalls his days as a deckhand on the Mississippi River.
Mississippi River guidebooks
Quad Cities Travel Guide
Weather forecast for Upper Mississippi cities
River levels on the Upper Mississippi
Towboat-watching resource: Boats in pools and queued in locks.
Dreaming of a trip down the river? Read about boaters taking a voyage of a lifetime down the Mississippi on River Trips.
Read More from Big River
Big River Travel Map — Dozens of scenic Mississippi overlooks and places to go.
Read Stories about the Upper Mississippi River from past issues of Big River Magazine.
See complete issues from 2006 and 2007 online (PDFs). Select issues here
Volunteer groups on the river - a nine-part series about non-profit groups making a difference on the Upper Mississippi
Take a look back at our April Foolishness river stories.