I have spent forty years in the basin of the Upper Iowa, a stream that winds from the flat farm fields of southern Minnesota through the wooded valleys of northeastern Iowa to the Mississippi. As a child I fished and swam in the river. As an adult I cross the river every day. My office overlooks the river, winding out of sight in two directions; with my windows open on warm days, I hear the raspy crowing of pheasant cocks in tall grasses along the river’s bank. On the map, the Upper Iowa is a blue line that, together with the crossing of two state highways, explains the position of the town I call home.
David S. Faldet, Oneota Flow: The Upper Iowa River and Its People