Kathy's parents 'barn' near Black Earth
After a very pleasant time near Black Earth, I headed north on highway 78 (very nice riding) and then east on highway 19. I wanted to go around, rather than through, Madison, and 19 looked like the best way to go. I was riding on a Sunday morning, so traffic wasn't too bad, but even with light traffic there were stretches that were uncomfortable to ride. I wouldn't want to do it during the week.
I stopped for a second breakfast in Waunakee (which proudly claims that it is the only Waunakee in the world) and lunch in Sun Prarie. At Marshall I'd had more than enough of 19 and headed south on 73. Highway 73 is great from Marshall south to I-94 (and the wind was from the north so I had a tail wind) and not bad from I-94 to Deerfield. I had been planning to continue on to highway 18, but there were so many bicyclists in Deerfield that I realized there was another Rail Trial going through there. I stopped and asked some bicyclist where to get on the trail and, after paying my $3 to a box at trail station, headed east on the Glacial Drumlin Trail which runs from Cottage Grove, just east of Madison, to Waukesha, just west of Milwaukee. There is a break of several miles roughly in the middle at Jefferson.
This trail wasn't quite as smooth as the Sparta-Elroy trail and it was even dustier, but it was very relaxing to cruise along and not have to worry about cars. It ran near highway 18 for much of its second half and what I saw of 18 made me happy to be on the trail instead. I stopped for a second lunch at Lake Mills (a resort area) and later I stopped on the trail for a snack. In the gap between the two sections I met the only bike tourist I met in either Wisconsin or Minnesota. He was heading west on a week long tour. He planned to ride and camp mainly on the Rail Trails.
Unlike the Sparta-Elroy-400 Trail, the Glacial Drumlin Trail does not have any camping facilities adjacent to it and it has fewer places to get hot food. Still it was an easy way to get to Milwaukee and certainly better than the road alternatives. I did, as I neared Waukesha, get awfully tired of riding it. The sheer monotony of it really got to me. 105 miles.
Previous Page Next Page