Our home is about 25 east of St. Louis, near Scott Air Force Base, IL. Although the roads in our area are mostly straight, there are endless miles of back-roads, county roads that run north-south and east-west through the Illinois farmlands. Though not technically demanding, these roads pass through areas that take you back in time 30-40 years, if not more. The pace is a little slower off the beaten path, and other drivers give you a little wave as you pass.
When I have more time (1/2 day or more), I like to travel south for an hour to Chester, IL (home of Popeye), and cross the Mississippi River into Missouri. This area, located about an hour south of St. Louis, is known as Arcadia Valley and the Mark Twain Forest. Here, the roads get interesting. Winding through hills and forests, the 2-lane roads remind me of some parts of West Virginia -- minus the mountains, of course.
Sit back and enjoy the pictures!
One of the more scenic drives in the local area is the Bluff Road. This road follows the Mississippi south from Columbia, IL to Chester. There is also a levee running parallel to the road that has a gravel "road" on it. It's narrow enough that 2 cars approaching each other have to slow down and edge off the road a little to pass.
Bluff Road - 8 Miles south of Columbia, IL
Another Bluff Road view.
Levee road - near Valmeyer IL. This levee runs appx 50 miles
from Columbia south to Chester.
Chester IL, Home of Popeye (see next 2 pictures)
This Popeye statue is located on the east end of the
Mississippi River bridge in Illinois.
(Read the plaque on the next picture)
Plaque on the Popeye statue.
One of the endless county roads near our home.
(The good ol' Honda Nighthawk)
One of the county roads was named "White Church Road". I decided to check
it out and this is what I found about 5 miles later. Surprised?
Spencer and I were out exploring the back roads on the Nighthawk.
One of the big events here is Ted's Motorcycle Rally, held in Alton IL each summer. Thousands of bikers come to look at other bikes and eat good food.
About 7 miles south of Perryville, County Road "J" turns off of Rt 52.
It is 18 miles of pure fun!
MO County Road "J"
More of "J"
At the end of CR "J", we head north a few miles
and loop back to Perryville on CR "T".
Here's my neighbor Paul burning up a nice curve on CR "T".
I believe this was taken on County Road "C",
about 8 miles east of Annapolis MO.
Nice, peaceful river with guys fishing down below.
Where else could this be?
St. Louis Gateway Arch