Hannah is near the end of her stay for this visit. Danelle was busy with a prior commitment, so I thought I would take her and the kids out for an adventure. We started the day at the Melvin Price Lock and Dam and the associated National Great Rivers Museum. We were hoping to get a full tour of the Dam.
We got started on the tour, but found out we couldn’t go out across the dam like I’ve done before due to a high security level. We did get to walk out closer to look at it.
The white and black bags are sand bags as there was a recent threat of flooding.
We didn’t stay as long as we wanted to due to the shortened tour, so we headed down the river road. We made a few pit stops along the way including stopping at the site of the old lock and dam. Then we back tracked hoping to go to the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. Again our luck was low as the roads were closed due to flooding issues. We did get to see a turtle in the road if that counts…
We took a family trip out to the Melvin Price Lock and Dam. It is the 26th lock and dam on the Mississippi river located in Alton, Illinois. Since I’m constantly fascinated with the rivers, I decided that it would be a nice family trip. We needed something to do and they have free tours of the dam throughout the day.
The visitor’s center is quite impressive. There are many interactive things to do there. The kids quickly realized that this was going to be more fun than they realized and took off to get their hands on some of the exhibits. One of our most favorite things was the drive a barge. The outside looked like the top of the tug, inside it had three large monitors simulating the view out of the barge. There were throttle and steering controls. We each took numerous turns driving through the simulations and had a great time.
The best part for me was taking the physical tour of the facility. This involved taking an elevator up a tower, walking out across about 80 feet above the water, then taking an elevator back down to a viewing platform. In the viewing office, we were fortunate enough to see a 1,000 foot barge lock through the damn. It is quite amazing to see it go through!
After we finished, we drove the Great River Road a bit before heading back home. I would recommend this tour to anybody interested in the river. Its a great price and quite entertaining!