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The Wisconsin River Road
Prairie DuChien
Prairie DuChien is built upon the former location of an old Indian village, at the juncture of the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers. This town has been here since the French trappers established it as a trading post in the 1600's. It is one of the oldest towns in the midwest.

Cabelas's, a  premier outfitter, is dwarfed by a huge bluff.
A residential section of Prairie DuChien.
A rail bridge, and a bridge built for auto and pedestrian traffic cross over to St. Feriole Island. This was actually the original site of Prairie DuChien, but regular flooding of the island resulting in the movement of the city to higher ground.

Main street St. Feriole. Though the island was abandoned as a population center, it remains as a park, and much of the old city of Prairie DuChien remains.

A great old lannon stone house, built in the days when the island was the site of one of the area's major cities and trading centers.

A view of the old railroad track, and of the playground and the Mississippi  River that it fronts.

Another view of the tracks, and of some of the old buildings alongside of them.

A look past the old freight station, and down what was once a side street of old Prairie DuChien.

The old freight station, along side the old railroad tracks.

This pavilion, built alongside the river, is a new structure, designed to look like the existing buildings remaining on the island.

This old log cabin is a historical structure, and has been here since the trading post days.

Villa Louis has been a local landmark for better than a century. This mansion was built in the mid 1800's when the area was still a wilderness.

The old stone railroad station is being restored to it's former glory.

An interior view of some of the restoration.  New beams, and an entirely new roof system are being put in.

These original old windows have been covered for years. They  will soon be unblocked to let light in for the first time in decades.

The first floor, with some of the original iron decorative columns.

Though the tracks are old, they are still connected to the main line, and trains, generally tourist trains, or dinner trains, still come here from time to time.

An old looking stone wall makes a barrier, and a handy spot to lean while watching the river.

A trio of older men sits, and watches the river. This is the very stereotype of a relaxed retirement. Certainly, I can think of worse way to spend a day.

A walled in boat dock. This may serve recreational boats, but is large enough for one of the tow boats that works the river.

A look across at Iowa. The Measuring stick in the foreground is to monitor water levels. The island here is often flooded.

One of the River's many tow boats, puts in for a bit of rest, and recreation.

The riverside, as the sun goes down.

This is the road which, after taking a turn, crosses the river, and takes us into Iowa.

The Wisconsin tourist center sit next to an old statue of Father Marquette. This is the first stop from Iowa, and one of the first for visitors coming over from Illinois.

Marquette, and Joliet were some of the earliest visitors to this area. He seems here to be offering us the river.


Crossing the bridge to go over into Iowa. The signs hints at some of the sights to see. Though one does not immediately think of Iowa, when considering the Mississippi, the state has a wonderful  selection of river towns, parks, and stretches of scenic roadway.

Back to traveling the River Road
Forward to McGregor, and Marquette Iowa