St. Louis, MO – Anyone eager to see eagles can discover a close connection with our nation’s emblem bird during Eagle Days at the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 18 and 19. Visitors can view eagles through spotting scopes staffed by trained volunteers at any time from the vantage point of the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge.
On both days the World Bird Sanctuary will be presenting an educational program featuring a live eagle, repeated every 20 minutes from 10 a.m. to 2:40 p.m. Programming includes a hands-on exhibit of local birds presented by St. Louis Audubon, a full-size replica of an eagle nest, and warming tent activities including childrenʼs art courtesy of The Green Center on Saturday.
Visitors will also enjoy Lewis and Clark living history demonstrations at both Bridge entrances. The Missouri Bridge entrance will feature re-enactors from the Discovery Expedition of St. Charles, Missouri. Visitors can see how Lewis and Clark and their crew lived, cooked, and traveled more than 200 years ago. Demonstrations will also include a flag raising at 10 a.m. and lowering at 3 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.
The Illinois side will feature re-enactors from the Lewis and Clark State Historic Site in Hartford, Illinois.
During the winter, the Mississippi River hosts one of North America's largest concentrations of bald eagles. They are drawn to areas of open water in search of fish, their preferred food. The Chain of Rocks rapids to the south of the Bridge create open waters which are ideal fishing waters for eagles. This is a unique opportunity to watch them fish, ride ice floes, soar overhead and roost in nearby trees while having access to an educational program featuring a live eagle and warming tent activities.
Visitors are encouraged to dress warmly, wear comfortable shoes (eagle viewing occurs at the center of the Bridge, a half-mile walk from each Bridge entrance), and leave pets at home. Hot food and drink will be available on site for purchase.
Eagle Days at the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge is produced through a partnership of the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) and Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), and is sponsored by Trailnet.
Directions to the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge from St. Louis: Take I-270 east toward Illinois. Exit at Riverview Drive exit and turn right. Turn left into the entrance of the Confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Park/Missouri Bridge. Parking at the Missouri Bridge entrance costs $5. (See below for free parking information.)
From Illinois: Take I-270 west towards Missouri. Exit at IL Route 3, go south to Chain of Rocks Road and follow west to the bridge entrance parking area (free). OR to park on the Missouri side, continue on I-270 west, over the Mississippi River; exit at Riverview Drive and turn left. Turn left into the entrance of the Confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Park/Missouri Bridge. Parking at the Missouri Bridge entrance costs $5.
Free parking is available at two satellite lots in Missouri, the St. Louis Welcome Center at Riverview and I-270 and North Riverfront Park, off of Riverview south of the waterworks. A free shuttle will be available from both locations. Free parking is also available at the Illinois Bridge entrance.