I live in the Chicago area so I definitely know the importance of planes, cars, buses, and trains in the transportation world. On my trip, I didn't see many planes, but I did see trains, both sides of the river, running hourly if not more often, and barges. Lots of barges. And they are big. Huge. I never realized how much the Mississippi River is still used to transport materials and equipment, but it must still be a vital means of transportation.