States traversed: Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, and Louisiana
US Route 71 runs from International Falls, Minnesota, south through the Great Plains, the Ozarks, and much of Louisiana, to end in south-central Louisiana. The northern end is a border crossing at International Falls, Minnesota, into Fort Frances, Ontario, that is shared with US Route 53. US Route 71 soon splits from US Route 53 to head southwest through Bemidji. US Route 71 passes through western Minnesota and western Iowa before reaching St. Joseph, Missouri. US Route 71 follows the Interstate 29 corridor from St. Joseph to Kansas City, then following the Interstate 49 corridor south along the western edges of Missouri and Arkansas. At Texarkana, US Route 71 cuts south to Shreveport, Louisiana, and then follows most of the long-established Interstate 49 corridor in Louisiana. The southern end is a trumpet interchange at Krotz Springs, Louisiana, midway between Opelousas and Baton Rouge. That trumpet interchange allows traffic on US Route 71 to merge with US Route 190; most traffic proceeds east toward Baton Rouge.
My photo of US Route 71 comes from the interchange where Interstate 29 connects with Missouri Highway 6 in St. Joseph, Missouri. This photo was taken facing west just east of the interchange, as my first order of business on the second morning of the St. Joseph trip, in May, 2014. The sign assembly depicted was right outside my hotel!