A Day of Adventure – Spook Cave, Field of Dreams, Galena, and Gravity Hill

Jul 13, 2018Pat's Chat

The day began when I poked the teenagers early in the morning with a promise for a day filled with adventure. They were skeptical, grumpy, and tired – but I asked for trust and optimism! Triggered by a morning post on Facebook showing a waterfall tour through Iowa, I realized there were many wonderful sites in our region that we had not yet experienced – let the adventure begin! After brunch at Sunrise Cafe in Dewitt and morning giggles, we were off.

First stop was Dyersville, IA to see the Field of Dreams.The baseball field was picture-perfect surrounded by the lush cornfield and I envisioned Shoeless Joe making a surprise appearance from the corn rows. “IF YOU BUILD IT” hung with reverence along the fence. Kids and grandparents played catch on the ball-field or ran the bases. The only tragedy of this stop – the gift shop was out of Dippin Dots! 



While playing site-seeing bingo and flipping from one pop station to the next, our drive took us through northern Iowa. We passed through Guttenburg and fantastic overlooks of the Mississippi.

About 45 minutes north we landed at Spook Cave. For a minimal fee, our boat tour of the ancient cave began. Gavin was our guide and the 47 degree temperature of the cave provided relief from the 90 degree heat. Low ceilings in the cave forced sister snuggling (rare in the Midwest). Drops of water from the ceiling called “cave kisses” provided luck on our journey. The tour was interesting and filled with history and funny stories of the missing maintenance man reportedly haunting the cave. We touched an ancient cephalopod fossil pre-dating the dinosaurs. And this gift shop had ice cream!






We headed back to the open road to our next destination. But . . . I was a little impatient. Slow down and be safe on your travels! Lesson learned. Biggest expense of the day!

About a 90 minute drive to our next stop in Shullsburg, Wisconsin. On a future trip we will tour and grab squeaky cheese curds at the cheese factory, but today our goal was Gravity Hill. An exciting mystery spot to experience where your car moves on its own – uphill. As we meandered down the proposed mystery spot, we stopped the van at where we thought we should be. All three of us developed vertigo and our heads swam with the strangest sensation, but the van did not move. We were now convinced of a nearby meteor or aliens in the cornfield. (I wouldn’t make up such weirdness). We found the exact location – heading north out of Shullsburg about 1-1.5 miles on County Road U you come to a 25 mph yellow sign. Just beyond this you will see the spray painted line in the road –GH– this is the spot!  Once in the correct location, I put the van in neutral and the fun began. (I apologize for the “OMG” and “Holy craps” in the video!)

You must see it – I have no explanation but I’m going to research it. Lily wants to see if it works when on roller-skates next time!

Our final destination was Galena, Il. We saw beautiful victorian homes and drifted in and out of quaint downtown shops. The only problem, most shops and homes closed at 5pm. It will be a place to return for more shopping. These pics show the actual state of sisterly love in a photo situation…









The best part of the day, giggles and small talk with my beautiful daughters and the words, “This was really fun, Mom! Let’s do it again sometime.” An inexpensive day touring the countryside. Many miles were traveled, but we were home by 7:30pm. Our next tour will look at the Iowa waterfalls and Iowa ghost towns. We hit three states in one fun-filled day with priceless memories.


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