“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
- J.R.R. Tolkien
I suppose these words of Bilbo could also be applied to parents on their way home from a basketball tournament in Alton, IL. We saw this observation tower to the right and Tony just turned off the road and went to find it....he's a sucker for observation towers. We found ourselves, at the end of this rabbit hole, at Camp Du Bois - the winter camp of Lewis and Clark before they embarked on their great adventure.
This area is full of history both human and natural. This is where the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers is. This is where Eagles nest every winter in great "flocks". Alton itself is one of those Mid-west river towns that are just so distinctive. Big houses of both brick and clapboard are nestled in the very hilly neighborhoods. Our wonderful guide, a middle aged woman who was filled with great enthusiasm for her subject matter (the kind of person you want your kids to have for history class) pointed out all the landmarks as we stood on the windy tower high above the river. There is actually a little island in the middle of the water where you can put your foot in and say that you are standing in two rivers at once.
I love when you can say, "Who knew???" about an interesting place so close to home.