Hank – After getting the latest on which roads are closed due to flooding and with Dave’s help getting our route straightened out, we bid Pam and Dave adieu and set course for Hawarden, IA. (For pronunciation assistance, see the blog post title.) But first, after eight miles, we stopped in Wakonda to have breakfast. Arthur owns and runs the Eagles Nest/Wakonda Cafe. He’s also the chef. And his oldest son, now a Command Master Chief, has been a chef in the Navy for many years now. I recommend the Texas Taters with your eggs. After breakfast we got back on the 302 Road, which would take us all the way to Hawarden. During the ride we saw a number of flooded corn fields. Some of them were draining through culverts into adjacent corn fields. It was a mess. And this was only the residual from the flooding that happened almost two weeks ago.
The road gradually developed more rollers and we went up and down a lot during the second half of our 40-mile trip. During one rest stop I called the Hawarden City Hall and asked about camping in the city park. I was informed they have a number of camp sites with power and water, bathrooms and showers, and all for $10 a day. Sold!
When we cross the Sioux River there was no Welcome to Iowa sign so we used the city’s sign to reflect we’ve reached our ninth state. Once in town we had a late lunch or an early dinner at a Mexican restaurant. Then we went to the park and picked out a camp site. We washed our clothes when we showered–they have hot water!–and laid them out to dry. The park is not in the best location for camping. We have a main road with truck traffic and train traffic a block away. Hopefully, removing our hearing aids will dampen the sound enough.
Kathy – Ok, just to clarify (since I tend to focus on the details) – there were rolling hills the entire 47-mile trip today. Google Maps for bikes said we would have a five mile downhill at the end of our day today. It didn’t happen. I wrote Google about a month ago about the inaccuracies in their bike map elevations and have yet to hear back from them. It’s not like they are THAT busy, I need to write them a follow-up note reminding them to fix that biking elevation issue. 🙂 Another hot day with the high humidity, too. The constant hills and heat wore into us both today. We were happy to be done. Headed to a Mexican restaurant upon arrival to Hawarden, Iowa hoping to get a nice cold margarita with dinner. Well this is the second Mexican restaurant since we started our trip that does not sell any alcoholic beverages. I must say, regardless, the lemonade hit the spot.
We were happy to arrive today at state number nine…Iowa!! Only 39 to go!! We are tired of itching with all our mosquito bites, black fly bites, gnats, and other nasty little flying bugs that like to devour us so we bought a Thermacell gadget. Rick (Deb & Dan’s son-in-law) told us about them. This Thermacell runs on batteries and is very light weight. It is supposed to emit some smell to keep the buggies away for up to 15 feet. Today is the first day we tried it, not sure if it’s working…the jury is still out. We need to find something that helps since we are heading towards Minnesota and Wisconsin next. I heard the mosquito was the state bird for Minnesota – yikes! 🙂 So we are hanging in our tent tonight and at the local convenience store catching up on our blog post as we try to stay cool and avoid additional bug bites. I know so many people are envious of us tonight. 😉