If taking an afternoon drive along IL Route 100 is in your plans, there are a few things you should know before you begin your journey along the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway.
Why would the road be closed? One of the many signatures of spring and summer in this region is the rising of the Mississippi and Illinois rivers. Every couple of years, winter snow and spring rain lead to the swelling of the river beyond its banks. This year happens to be one of those years!
Roads that are closed
The Mississippi River is under 18 feet in Alton but is expected to rise above minor flood stage by Friday, July 5. In Grafton, the river level is at 19 feet and estimated to reach 23.1 feet by noon on Friday, July 5 while in Hardin, the Illinois River is at 25.62 feet and should hit 29.2 feet by Friday, July 5.
If you would like to check the latest river levels, you can access them at the following links.
River Levels at Alton
River Levels at Grafton
River Levels at Hardin
Can you still drive and ride along the scenic byway?
Yes! Route 100 (Great River Road) is open from Alton to Kampsville.
Is it okay to plan a trip? Will the businesses be open?
We hope that this little "bump in the road" won't stop you from visiting us. There are places that are open and waiting to serve you!
Are there any changes for upcoming events?
• The first $5 Friday Summer Concert featuring Changes in Latitudes has been rescheduled to Friday, Aug. 23.
• The Grafton Music in the Park event has been moved to Red Hawk Park on Grafton Hills Drive in Grafton until further notice.
• The Shiver Me Timbers Towboat Festival has been rescheduled to Saturday - Sunday, July 27 - 28.
Accessible areas to view Mississippi River
• Riverview Park
On the bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River, Riverview Park is the centerpiece of the Christian Hill historic district. Visitors and locals alike make the trek to this picturesque bluff-top park to delight in the stunning views of the Mississippi River.
• Lewis & Clark Confluence Tower
Travel up in the tower and enjoy the view of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers from platforms at 50, 100 and 150 feet. With the naked eye, you can easily see the muddy waters of the Missouri River as it converges with the Mississippi.
• Pere Marquette State Park
At 8,000-acres, Pere Marquette State Marquette is one of the largest parks in the state of Illinois. Famous for its exceptional beauty and spectacular views of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers from atop the bluffs, visitors can take advantage of year round recreational activities in an environment untouched by civilization. Pere Marquette State Park is a great place to stop and spend the day for those interested in hiking, biking, horseback riding, boating, fishing and bird watching. More than 230 species of birds have been identified within the boundaries of the park, as well as numerous rare trees, plant life and wildlife.
• Melvin Price Locks & Dam #26
See the best view of Alton and the Mississippi River from eight stories in the air atop the Melvin Price Locks & Dam. Take a guided tour and see towboats and barges as they push their way through this incredible structure. Group tours are offered daily by reservation only at 9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Groups of 25 to 35 people at a time are allowed on the locks and dam tour.
Click here to see photos from the 2013 flood.
Click here to see photos from previous floods all around Alton.
Click here for more information on the Alton area.
If you have additional questions or concerns, do not hesitate
to call the Alton Visitor Center at (800) 258-6645.
Updated last 6/28/13 at 12:45 p.m. CST