July 21. Day 38.
Finally getting caught up with these! Hooray! And we’re on schedule to get to Chiacgo on Friday – hooray!
It was a relatively easy day thanks to the creepiest tunnels ever. More on that later. We ended up going to bed at 9:15, so we woke up pretty early and were on the road by 7. We decided to brave the bike trail again, even though it wasn’t paved. We were hoping that Ethan was right about the tunnels because there were two huge hills on the elevation chart that we were in no mood to deal with.
Since the trail was a railroad way back when, the hills are very gradual and though it was dirt/gravel, it made for very easy riding. We came to the first tunnel fairly quickly. Pretty much immediately you could tell that we were going to go through the hill because the ground steadily rose along the sides the trail where the earth had been moved for the railroad. I was pretty happy about not going over the hills, but when we got to the tunnel I was a little nervous. First of all, it had doors that I was terrified were going to close once we got in there and second, it was so long! I was also certain that I was going to get attacked by bats. I was really creeped out, but the only way to go was through!
Ethan said that he kept seeing the end get closer then farther away like an optial ellusion. I just kept my eyes on my light on the ground and tried not to hit a pot hole. Finally, we made it out! Alive! Yay! And we saved time and engery we would have undoubtedly wasted going over top of the hill. Huzzah! After more biking on the trail, we came to the town of Wilton. We got off the trail and went through the town to check it out. There was nothing special, so kept going. We could have stayed on the road, but there as another hill coming up, so we got back in the trail to avoid that one as well.
The second tunnel wasn’t as long, but it was still creepy. We made it through that one unscathed and even more happy that we didn’t have a hill. We got off the trail just before getting to the town of Kendall. The trail was good to us, but we were ready for pavement. We stopped to use the bathroom and shed a layer of clothing. I forgot to mention that it was actually pretty chilly the night before and this morning. And this was the first day in a long time that it wasn’t muggy and unbearably hot.
After Kendall, we pushed on to Union Center, where we stopped for a quick snack. The riding was still really easy so we kept going to the next town, La Valle. We stopped there for donuts, which ended up not being that great so Ethan are most of them. From there it got a bit more hilly, but we were still cruisin’ and making really good time. We made another quick stop, but I don’t remember where, then stopped for lunch in Reedsburg. It was a pretty big town so there was McDonald’s and lots of other fast food options, but we had a whole loaf of bread and a whole jar of peanut butter and jelly to eat.
We couldn’t find a good park, so we ended up at some picnic tables outside of Culver’s. I couldn’t eat there without getting some French fries and they were so good. No regrets. From there it was only another 14 miles to our destination in Baraboo. Ethan was really hoping to get a bit farther today, but I was having some back and knee pain and really wanted to stop. Also, going father would mean two very long days getting in to Chicago and I just didn’t want to have to deal with that.
Ethan did get a positive response from a host 16 miles further, but by the time we got to Baraboo, I was done for the day. We also already had a host lined up here. When we got into town we went to Aldi hoping to get a frozen pizza, like a Digorno. Instead, we left with a giant 16″ take-n-bake pizza. We looked ridiculous toting it through town. Our hosts wasn’t actually home when we got in, but was kind enough to leave his house open. He left a very nice note on the door with instructions to make ourselves at home.
We made our pizza, which was delicious, and relaxed the evening away. We’re both glad that we stayed! Our host, Rob, got home later so we got a chance to chat with him. He actually grew up in Jackson, MI and has family a few miles from us in Holt. Small world!!
It was another great day of biking and we are nearing the home stretch! We are getting very excited about that!