Day 17: Kewanee, IL to Muscatine, IA (86.9 miles)

We headed out of Illinois, racing through the cornfields and hoping that the headwinds didn’t come our way. Other than a dog chasing us and biting Keene’s pannier, we had an uneventful morning.

The afternoon brought the real gem of the day: as we crossed into Iowa, we got our first glimpse of the Mississippi River. For Graham and Cyrus, this was the first time ever. We got into Muscatine, IA and spent some time at the local bike shop, Harper’s Cycling and Fitness, where the friendly bike mechanics helped us fix some issues.

We then made our way to our hosts’ house. Mark and Julie are avid cyclists and triathletes, and, like us, enjoy all kinds of outdoor activities. They treated us to pizza and local beer and regaled us with stories of RAGBRAI (a 20,000 person ride across Iowa) and their plans for hiking in the Grand Canyon. We had a lot of fun talking to them and are really happy and thankful that they took us in for the night.