Big River Magazine
Explore the Upper Mississippi

May-June 2017

Visit us on Facebook

Search our site

search engine by freefind  

Read stories from past issues of Big River

Climbing the River Bluffs (pdf)
The Mississippi River valley could be the best sport-climbing spot in the Midwest. March-April 2017 By Pamela Eyden Climbing Links

Preparing for a Long River Cruise. (pdf) Jan-Feb 2008

Waiting for the Julia Belle Swain (pdf)
The hard, gritty, expensive work of rescuing one of the finest steam sternwheeler packet boats ever built is nearly finished. Jan-Feb 2017 By John Gabbert

Spring Lake - A Legacy Lost and Found
The author explores his heritage on the Mississippi. Nov-Dec 2016 By Denny Caneff

Gray Shadow

Nov-Dec 2016
By Kenny Salwey
Photos by Herb Lange

Editorial: Dead, Dying and Poison Zones
Decades of voluntary agricultural programs and incentives have had little effect. By Reggie McLeod, editor and publisher of Big River

Making the River Safe to Drink (pdf)
July-August 2016

Do you know where your drinking water comes from? Why do some cities draw water from the river and others dig wells? The cost of treating river water can be 10 times the cost of treating ground water.

Making river water safe to drink can be a complicated process. Its chemistry can change from hour to hour. Read more in our feature story.By Pamela Eyden

Coldwater Cave, May-June 2016
By Capt. Ted Peck

2015 Mississippi River Paddlers
By John Sullivan

The Big Campus: Augsburg's River Semester Nov-Dec 2015
The river was their classroom for three months. By Ryan Johnson

Nighthawk Twilight July-Aug 2015 By Molly McGuire

2014 River Pilgrims (pdf) Nov-Dec 2014 By Anna Segner

Cardinal flowers on the Mississippi (pdf) By John Sulivan

May-June 2017

Covering the Heart of the Driftless Area for 24 Years

Big River Subscription

Order your new Big River Magazine subscription here. Your sub will start with the next issue. Big River is published six times a year.

In This Issue

Stories you don't want to miss!

See Highlights for the Table of Contents

See links to more information about feature stories.

The Last Hideout — Restoring Driftless Area Prairies
The steep hillsides, rocky bluffs and flat ridges of the Driftless Area still harbor more pockets of ancient ecosystems than anywhere else in the Midwest.
By Pamela Eyden

Over Lake Pepin and Into the Clouds — Soaring with Eagles. By C.J. Jacobson

(Endangered rusty-patched bumble bee by Johanna James)

The Plight of the Bumble Bees Bumblebee populations are not doing well. By Joan Schnabel


Driving the Blues Highway to Clarksdale

• River Loop — Quad Cities to LeClaire

• Galena’s Rich History Comes to Life in its Historic Homes

• Book Review
Canoes, A Natural History in North America

Read More from Big River

From September-October 2016: Effigy Mounds of the Wisconsin River Valley By Sara Millhouse. Also in PDF

Editorial: Replacing an Aging Paradigm
Dams have unbalanced an environment that evolved for millions of years.
By Reggie McLeod, Editor and Publisher of Big River

Roll Me to the River Jan-Feb 2016
Rig up a trailer on a fold-up bicycle and pedal your canoe to the river. By John Gabbert

Carp Poetry Winners July-Aug 2015

12 Great Rivertown Gardens (pdf) May-June 2015

Big River Travel Map Dozens of scenic Mississippi overlooks and places to go.

Read Stories about the Upper Mississippi River from past issues of Big River Magazine.

See complete issues from 2006 and 2007 online (PDFs). Select issues here

Volunteer groups on the river - a nine-part series about non-profit groups making a difference on the Upper Mississippi

Check the weather forecast and river levels for Upper Mississippi River cities.

More on overlooks

River organizations

Links to Upper Mississippi Resources

Take a look back at our April Foolishness river stories




Links to resources from Reggie McLeod's Canoecopia presentation

RiverTrips: Big River source-to-sea paddler page accounts, stories and resources

Here's where you can purchase the latest Big River.

Order single issues from Big River

See more on the Highlights page

Contact Big River

Contact Info

Subscriptions and renewals

Change of Address

Back Issues

Books and Products


New River Products!
Swamp Stories
Kenny Salwey's CD

Poems inspired by Mississippi River overlooks



Deck on Deck: Towboating in the Twin Cities by Capt. Bob Deck

What's it like to work on a towboat? Deck on Deck is a first-hand account of life on river towboats in the 1970s and 80s. These stories will entertain you as Bob Deck recalls his days as a deckhand on the Mississippi River.

Mississippi River guidebooks
By Dean Klinkenberg

Quad Cities Travel Guide

Lansing, Iowa, to Le Claire Travel Guide

Driftless Area Travel Guide

More info and ordering info.


Advertising Rates

Advertising Specifications

Live River Links

Weather forecast for Upper Mississippi cities

River levels on the Upper Mississippi

Towboat-watching resource: Boats in pools and queued in locks.

Facebook Page Mississippi River Paddlers - people paddling from Source to Sea