Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Biking in Wisconsin

Whew!  Pretty much on vacay since the first of August--no time to blog!  L.A. the first week, back to SoFL with daughter and grandson, back to WI and BIKING AND CAMPING for two weeks!  Then back to SoFL for a Labor Day weekend up in Stuart to celebrate my mom's 80th birthday with all the kids and grandkids.  Daughter and grandson go back to L.A. on the weekend, and I will be back in WI then too. 

The weather in WI was simply gorgeous throughout the month of August--80's and sunny nearly every day.  Wisconsin has lots of rails-to-trails, as most states do.  The Oak Leaf Trail runs right past our condo, so we have been running and riding bikes on that for a long time.  But we did not know about another trail, the Ozaukee County Interurban Trail, which goes through Ozaukee County just north of Milwaukee County.
What is very cool is that the Oak Leaf Trail connects with the Interurban Trail, so that I can ride from downtown Milwaukee up to Grafton, where John's office is, mostly on bike trail.  Which means--mostly no motorized traffic, biking through trees and parks and little towns.  I have been doing this little trek nearly every day, about 24 miles one way.  THEN, after work, John and I get on the bikes and do another 20-25 miles or so on the Interurban Trail heading north of Grafton.

Oak Leaf Trail
Brown Deer Park
Ozaukee Interurban Trail - Mequon
On the trail
On the trail
We heard about a trail over by LaCrosse on the east side of the state, the Elroy-Sparta Trail, a rails-to-trail going from Elroy to Sparta and decided we needed to check that out.  So on the Friday afternoon a couple weeks ago, we loaded up the truck with our camping and biking gear (plus the dog--we bought a bike trailer to carry her along with us!) and made our way over to a campground in Wonewoc, about 20 miles south of Elroy, the start of the Elroy-Sparta Trail.  Two days and two nights of camping and biking!

Saturday was 82 degrees and sunny--perfect biking!  We started in Elroy and biked about 20 miles up, going through two of the three tunnels on the trail.  It's quite hilly in that part of the state and the railroadbuilt tunnels (in 1873!) through these hills for the trains to go through.  The first two are about a quarter mile long and the third is three quarters of a mile long. 

Some pics on the Elroy-Sparta Trail:

Getting ready for the ride

Elroy-Sparta Trail

Joy & John 1st Tunnel

Our bikes

Coming out of a tunnel

Our campfire


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