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Showing posts from August, 2015

Meandering Sunday Morning

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Today I am thankful for gravel girlfriends and meandering bike rides.
I met up with Katy and Joy this morning at about 9:00 for a gravel ride. Katy had not had coffee because her husband, who was camping with their two kids, had the French press. So our ride started with a short hop to downtown Northfield where we enjoyed a cup of coffee at Goodbye Blue Monday. 
After coffee, we headed out on a Strava bike route that we had ridden before. Even though we had a set route, we were liberal with how we followed it and made a detour within the first few miles to take a picture of our bikes on Waterford Bridge. It's important to take pictures of your bike leaning up against things. It really is. Then we rode on and meandered around the country on a perfect Sunday morning. We rode with speed at times and at a slower pace at other times. We took pictures, especially of Joy and her new bike - Pixie Duster. We talked. We stopped at times to check our route. We stopped once because a wasp stu…

Bikepacking Trip Wrap up

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Our bike packing trip is complete and now, three weeks later, I'm finally getting around to writing up what is probably my last blog post about the trip.

The first thing to address is the big question - do we want to go bike packing again? 

The answer? Yes! We definitely want to do more bike packing and include camping into future adventures. Bucket list routes include (but are not limited to) the Katy Trail in Missouri and the Elroy Sparta Trail in Wisconsin.

Secondly, a big Thank you is in order to the good people of Milltown Cycles, aka Milltown Premium Adventure Goods for equipping us with our bikes, our seat bags and for fielding lots and lots of questions about bike packing.

Now here's our bike packing wrap-up report with info on equipment, weather, coffee and other stats! Not interested in bike packing? Well, this might be kinda dry stuff so you might want to skip down to the bottom to the Coffee section of this post and call it a day.

Bikes: Owen rode his 2013 Salsa Mukluk…

Back to Day 3 - Bike packing adventure

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It's coming on two weeks since Owen and I went on our bike packing trip so I figured I'd better get back to writing about day 3 as I promised to do in my last post.

We started Day 3 in Luck, Wisconsin with super weather once again. Owen and I keep thinking we'll get going early but it was about 9:00 a.m. by the time we had breakfast, packed up and were on the trail again. We headed south on the Gandy Dancer Trail for St. Croix Falls, an easy 15 mile ride and found our way through some city trails to downtown St. Croix Falls.

Owen wanted to see the falls, so we took some pictures then found a little coffee shop, Coffee Time, and had lunch. They were busy and we had to wait awhile for our order, but the two women working there were so sweet and the food quite good so it was well worth the wait.
We wanted to stop at Cyclova, a bike shop a couple of doors down from Coffee Time, but were bummed to discover that they were closed on Tuesdays. We looked in the window instead and s…

170 Miles Since Sunday

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We have wrapped up our four day bike adventure and, to reward ourselves, have settled in at a B&B for the evening.
Since Sunday we have biked about 170 miles. The bikes worked great. Our bodies worked great. I'm a bit sore (methinks I need to lower the nose of my saddle a bit) and really can feel that my legs have been working. Other than that, though, I felt like my body was more machine than anything and once I got pedaling, I just kept on going. 
I'll write more about yesterday's ride later (in short, 54 miles from Luck to St. Croix Falls back through Luck and overnight in Siren) but here's a brief recap of today...
Today we slept in and got riding at 11 a.m.  Gorgeous day! Had a wonderful 30 mile ride from Siren to Shell Lake where we had lunch at The Pottery Shed (one of my favorite places). Rode to our van which was parked at our son's camp in Shell Lake, packed up the bikes and are now showered and settled in for the evening. 
I'm going to eat now!
Here&#…

We're in Luck!

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We're in Luck, Wisconsin this evening instead of Superior and we feel lucky to be here!
We had breakfast at a little cafe in Siren this morning and were on the Gandy Dancer Trail heading north by 9:00.  The going was somewhat slow but the crushed limestone trail was good and we made Danbury by 11:00. We had lunch then I bought some fudge and made a comment to the lady in the fudge shop that we were heading to Superior. When she figured out we were on bikes she got worried and told us the trail turned into an ATV trail and said the trail wasn't good for bikes. We knew that to some degree  - but have never seem ATV trails so didn't know what to expect. We had done as much online research as we could but still didn't know how the trail would work for our bikes. We just knew we had a long 50 miles ahead of us to make Superior and that there were basically no towns in between.  Well, we got on the trail and soon discovered why the fudge shop lady was worried. The trail nort…

Safe and sound in Siren

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Well we are safe and sound in Siren, Wisconsin and have finished day 1 of our bike packing adventure. 

We took off from Shell Lake just before 4 p.m. and headed west on county road B for Siren. At mile 3.5 Owen got stung by a bee or something so we stopped to check him out. Owen reacts terribly to mosquito bites so I was quite worried he'd swell up and have an allergic reaction. But he didn't, thank goodness. We biked on. 
We had about a 15 mph headwind all the way to Siren. That was a bummer but we managed. The ride went well. The scenery was beautiful. 
After 2 1/2 hours (27.8 miles) of biking we rolled into Siren. We're staying at a little motel, the Pinewood Motel, and we're having dinner right now at the Pour House. 

My foot is a little sore. Other than that, I'm feeling strong. 
Planning on 70 miles (Owen says it's all downhill) tomorrow.

It's almost Go Time!

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Tomorrow Owen and I take off on our bike packing adventure. We are mostly packed but will finish up in the morning. We have some time as we are not due to drop our son off at camp until 1:30 p.m. at the earliest. It's likely we'll leave our home for Shell Lake, Wisconsin around 10 a.m. and be biking by mid-afternoon.

At present, our plan is to bike 30 miles to Siren on Sunday afternoon and overnight there. We talked about biking to Danbury, another 10 miles further north, but I could not find a non-smoking hotel room open (at a reasonable price) at the local casino hotels. It's not that we are really picky about non-smoking vs. smoking rooms but that combined with the fact that we have just a few hours to get anywhere on Sunday made us decide we'd bike a shorter distance on our first day. Seems less stressful.

On Monday we plan to bike about 70 miles all the way to Superior. We'd make it a shorter day except that hotels appear to be scarce along the Gandy Dancer Tr…