To get back to the Expedition, select a date!

May 11, Thursday-
It is sad that today was our last full day on the boat. We picked up a news crew at the the lock. They spent time doing some interveiws and getting some footage. Before they came John did more interveiws with all of us.

When we got to the lock we had to spend alot of time circling and waiting for a barge and tow and a government coast gaurd boat to lock through. We then let the news crew off in La Crosse and docked by the Radisson. After spending a few minutes walking around La Crosse we met back at the boat to watch us on the news. To celebrate our trip we all had dinner together at piggys. It was a nice dinner.

I will miss everyone and the time spent not only together but the time on the river also!

May 10, Wednesday-
I woke this morning to find the Lilly Belle surrounded by fog! It was very pretty. We were able to travel using gps. Even though some of the barges and tug boats were pulled over waiting it out.

After the fog had lifted we interviewed Ike and video taped it for the documentry. Later on as we got closer to Lansing I navigated while Ike hung pictures of his grandchildren. In Lansing we worked on our scavenger hunt. Matt and I first went to the Horsefalls Lansing variety store. They had incredible things every where. I asked the man who owns it if he ever has any problems with health codes or fire hazard requirements. He said the only people that inspect are the insurance agency. I got lost in there once and had to call for Matt so I could find him!

We found sparklers and other fun things you light on fire. Andrea bought a lot of sparklers, and when John saw them he wanted some to so he went and bought the three foot ones! After supper we praticed singing the song that was written for Ike. Then we had him come and listen. It was the first time he had heard the song and he really liked it!

When it was just getting dark Brooke and I built a small fire everyone then joined us and we got out the sparklers and had lots of fun. We even had marshmallows! We traveled alot today. Some how that seems to make a person tired!

May 9, Tuesday-
Today Matt and I got up early to pick up shells from a spot he had found while looking for a fishing spot! We got some great shells with holes in them from the button factory. When we got to the boat it was ready to leave! We were heading off to Praire du Chien! Along the way I did some navigating while Ike washed the windows. While we were moving Hawk came skipping up in his little boat and took every one on back water tours! Very Cool!

When we got to our destination we hopped in to the van and went to effigy mounds. I like effigy mounds it is a historical site that really makes you think! We hiked four miles which is incredible considering before we started we looked at the path and saw that it was up hill! Boy were we all tired!

After we got back to the boat we toured Villa Louis, a historical mansion. It was gorgeous and amazing. Over 90 percent of the items in the house are orginal! The rooms have been redecorated to look exactly like pictures that were found of the house. They even had wallpaper created just like the original. The formal dining room was set up just like it was in a picture of one of the daughters 10th birthday. I like the fact that just because they used pictures to recreate the rooms they are all from slightly different years. It may not be like fifty years of a differnce but ten years difference. I think that some of the history is lost on people though because more attention is placed on the mansion. I saw several diffent building that were also historicaly registered but you couldn't find info on what for. The area was also a fort during the war of 1812. My favorite war to study and read about. The only info I found though was a plaque! I will really be looking for more information on when Praire du Chien was a fort!

May 8, Monday-
Wow! the town of Guttenberg is so cool!! It has incredible buildings and amazing history. I was talking to a DNR person who told me that there was an old button factory and you can find mussel shells with holes in them. I was so excited I wanted to go in search of these shells. Bonnie, Thor, Matt, and I went looking and found piles of shells. We were so amazed! The shells with buttons cut out of them were everywhere! We even found buttons in verious forms of prduction. I had read about finding shells like this but never thought I would find any, let alone piles! The old factory is in the process of being made into a hotel and it is beautiful. I also was able to talk to a lock and dam worker. I was wondering if the locks and dams get filled with sediment since most of the backwaters are being filled in. He said no. In the afternoon we visited the school. The students had a lot of questions. We then all went out side for a picture. It was a great day I don't want it to end!

May 7, Sunday-
This morning was nice! John made coffee and it was really relaxing! Over breakfast we all discussed our group activites and started our group journal page. We then started off for Cassville. Cassville was a neat little town. Over lunch we put together a scavanger hunt and that afternoon we went in search of our stuff! After falling and skinning my knee and half of my leg I was soon on my way again. Jamie and I found that even with a skinned knee I can hoof it! Cassville has an amazing living history town, and the mansion of the first wisconsin governer. Jamie and I walked all the way there it was about 2 miles. It was really unfortunate that it was closed. Darn! After we were all done at Cassville we moved on to our campsite for the evening. At the beach where we were staying it was fun to explore. There were pockets of mud mixed with the sand and this fasinated me because even though it was amidst the sand it was all mud. I made mud balls that Thor and Matt had alot of fun playing catch with. It was such a great day!

May 6- This morning I got up at 4:30! Only a few things can get me out of bed that early! I was so excited, today I would be starting my trip up the Mississippi with Rivers of Life. Meeting new people, seeing new things, experiencing new experiences. What could be better? Not a thing! The Lilly Belle is incredible! I am not sure what I expected but this is wonderful! The paddles are so impressive. There are ladders, decks, books, plants, pictures, nick nacks, magazines, and all sorts of other things all over to investigate. The screen doors have two latches on them. It takes awhile to realize you need to unlatch both latches. With a big barge on front and a paddle wheel in back the living quarters are in the middle with the pilot house on top. The pilot house is always a point of interest! I was able to navigate the the Lilly Belle. It was lots of fun. I enjoyed it so much! Following the charts, using the binoculars to find the markers of where the channel is so you can stay between them. When dusk sets in it is harder to find the markers in the dark. So you take a huge spot light and scan the water for the markers to reflect back at you. Captain Ike left it up to me to navigate while he helped the supper crew light the stove. While navigating I listened to the tow boats talk to each other over cb radio. They kept refering to us as the little boat. I really didn't think we were that little but when compared to them I suppose we are small. Dinner was great and everyone aboard is so much fun to be with!

Center for Global Environmental Education
Hamline University Graduate School of Education
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