Illinois and Missouri

Illinois and Missouri

May 27th through June 1st, 2023

We were going to spend a good part of our 2023 summer in Muscatine, Iowa at mom's, but we had some things to do and see in the area. We made a loop through Illinois and Indiana for a few weeks before going back to mom's. First, we spent a relaxing week at the Dam West Campground in Carlyle, Illinois.

We went without the boat, bikes, kayaks, and other things. That was because we bought a new enclosed car hauler sight unseen and over the phone. We were going to pick it up when we got to the last leg of our quick Midwest journey. So, all we had was the coach towing nothing and the car.

We felt pretty light, and it was weird being lakeside without our boat. It was a bummer, but we kept reminding ourselves we had a trailer waiting for us. The campground was pretty awesome, and we thought we had the best site there (site 38). The park was pretty big, and we explored it by car. Illinois is so lush and green, and though it was humid some of the days it wasn't too bad. We really liked it.

Lacey is always adorable, but she probably got the best grooming ever in Carlyle at the Furfetti Pet Salon. Carlyle ended up being a really nice town. There was a nice marina next to our campground as well as a Mexican restaurant that we visited a couple times.

We were as close to St. Louis, Missouri as we'd be for a while, so we spent a day there. First, we went to the Ulysses S. Grant National Historical Site where the president once lived. It was right in the middle of the city but they had a lot of land set aside. It was like we were transported to the way things were back in the day. It was gorgeous, and we went on a short tour with a group. It was relaxing.

Of course, we were in St. Louis so we went to the Gateway Arch National Park after seeing Grant's old home. It was pretty impressive. There is a huge visitor area underground beneath the arch, and we hung out there for a while. We watched a movie about how the arch was constructed (you have to pay to see it, but it's cheap and well worth it). We also took the tram to the top, which was crazy cool. We had our car to ourselves, and it was really fun.

After the trip to the top we visited the cafe for smoothies. The air conditioning was on high, and the icy smoothies put us over the top. There was a museum, but we were both too cold to visit it. So, we went back up to ground level to warm up. It was a fantastic day in St. Louis.

Our friends Cim and Daniel from Texas saw our Instagram posts from St. Louis and they weren't too far from Carlyle. They decided to take a spur-of-the-moment trip down to see us, and we rented a tritoon (a pontoon with three tubes underneath instead of two). They came down with their dog Indy and we had a blast on the boat out on the lake. It even rained quite a bit, but the boat had an awning over the top to keep us mostly dry. The dogs had fun, too.

We visited the Mexican restaurant with Cim and Daniel and then they headed north. It was such a nice surprise!

We only had a week in Carlyle, and we'd definitely stay there again. You never know what the future holds.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Love seeing pics of my hometown! Glad you enjoyed yourselves (and hopefully stayed cool). ?

    1. We had a great day in St. Louis! It wasn’t too hot, buggy, or muggy at all. There was a baseball game when we were down there, too, so it was a big party on the sidewalks. It really is a cool town.

Leave a Reply

Close Menu