Big River Magazine
Explore the Upper Mississippi

July-August 2017

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Read stories from past issues of Big River

The Plight of the Bumble Bees May-June 2017 By Joan Schnabel

Restoring Driftless Area Prairies May-June 2017 By Pamela Eyden (also in PDF)

Paddling Odysseys of 2016March-April 2017 (pdf)

Climbing the River Bluffs (pdf)
The Mississippi River valley could be the best sport-climbing spot in the Midwest. March-April 2017 By Pamela Eyden Climbing Links

Preparing for a Long River Cruise. (pdf) Jan-Feb 2008

Waiting for the Julia Belle Swain (pdf)
The hard, gritty, expensive work of rescuing one of the finest steam sternwheeler packet boats ever built is nearly finished. Jan-Feb 2017 By John Gabbert

Spring Lake - A Legacy Lost and Found
The author explores his heritage on the Mississippi. Nov-Dec 2016 By Denny Caneff

Gray Shadow

Nov-Dec 2016
By Kenny Salwey
Photos by Herb Lange

Editorial: Dead, Dying and Poison Zones
Decades of voluntary agricultural programs and incentives have had little effect. By Reggie McLeod, editor and publisher of Big River

Making the River Safe to Drink (pdf)
July-August 2016

Do you know where your drinking water comes from? Why do some cities draw water from the river and others dig wells? The cost of treating river water can be 10 times the cost of treating ground water.

Making river water safe to drink can be a complicated process. Its chemistry can change from hour to hour. Read more in our feature story.By Pamela Eyden

Coldwater Cave, May-June 2016
By Capt. Ted Peck

2015 Mississippi River Paddlers
By John Sullivan

The Big Campus: Augsburg's River Semester Nov-Dec 2015
The river was their classroom for three months. By Ryan Johnson

Nighthawk Twilight July-Aug 2015 By Molly McGuire

2014 River Pilgrims (pdf) Nov-Dec 2014 By Anna Segner

Cardinal flowers on the Mississippi (pdf) By John Sulivan

July-August 2017

Covering the Heart of the Driftless Area for 24 Years

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In This Issue

Stories you don't want to miss!

See Highlights for the Table of Contents

See links to more information about feature stories.

Nahant Marsh — A Place of Beauty and Education
Rare, daffodil-bright prothonotary warblers and yellow-throated Blanding’s turtles are among the creatures cataloged at this former Superfund site turned wildlife preserve in the armpit of the Quad Cities’ rusty, industrial river-bottom sprawl.
By Emery Styron

Trempealeau Hotel— Blending Inside & Outside, Old & New. By Sara Millhouse

The Trempealeau Hotel serves dinner until 9 p.m. seven days a week in summer. Friday through Monday it opens for lunch at 11 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday the kitchen opens at 5 p.m. The bar stays open “late” every night.

Exploring the Many Dimensions of the
Root River Valley

by Reggie McLeod

Also, the Cassville Ferry, missing muskies of the Upper Miss, planting trees with Living Lands & Waters, and questions surrounding the Corps' 40-year dredge spoil plan.

Read More from Big River

From September-October 2016: Effigy Mounds of the Wisconsin River Valley By Sara Millhouse. Also in PDF

Editorial: Replacing an Aging Paradigm
Dams have unbalanced an environment that evolved for millions of years.
By Reggie McLeod, Editor and Publisher of Big River

Roll Me to the River Jan-Feb 2016
Rig up a trailer on a fold-up bicycle and pedal your canoe to the river. By John Gabbert

Carp Poetry Winners July-Aug 2015

12 Great Rivertown Gardens (pdf) May-June 2015

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

Check the weather forecast and river levels for Upper Mississippi River cities.

More on overlooks

River organizations

Links to Upper Mississippi Resources

Take a look back at our April Foolishness river stories


Restoring Driftless Area Prairies May-June 2017 By Pamela Eyden (also in PDF)

RiverTrips: Big River source-to-sea paddler page accounts, stories and resources

Here's where you can purchase the latest Big River.

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Contact Big River

Contact Info

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Back Issues

Books and Products


New River Products!
Swamp Stories
Kenny Salwey's CD

Poems inspired by Mississippi River overlooks



Deck on Deck: Towboating in the Twin Cities by Capt. Bob Deck

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
By Dean Klinkenberg

Quad Cities Travel Guide

Lansing, Iowa, to Le Claire Travel Guide

Driftless Area Travel Guide

More info and ordering info.


Advertising Rates

Advertising Specifications

Live River Links

Weather forecast for Upper Mississippi cities

River levels on the Upper Mississippi

Towboat-watching resource: Boats in pools and queued in locks.

Facebook Page Mississippi River Paddlers - people paddling from Source to Sea