Monday, August 15, 2011

an epic family bike ride

Camille riding ahead 
 We started out on a family bike ride yesterday at about noon.  We packed water, juice, snacks and pedaled out on a winding, hilly, country road.  We headed toward a 'rails to trails' bike path less than 2 miles away.  This is a converted railroad line that is now a really lovely, rustic bike path.
With no major expectations we kept riding.  "Should we turn back, yet?"  And the answer kept being "no".
After about 6 miles of riding, I spotted a luscious blackberry patch.  Mmmm, a well-deserved break and snack.

"Let's keep going!"  So, we did.  Two more miles into town.  Where we enjoyed ice cream and popsicles in a converted train depot that is a junction for three different 'rails to trails' bike paths.

No one could resist this fun climbing structure at the playground.

Heading back out of town, we crossed the wooden covered bridge that spans the Baraboo River.

Energy was waning at times, and we alternated singing, taking breaks, and pedaling in silence depending on the mood.  We thought it would be shorter to bypass where we got on the trail and go to the next road crossing which looked on the map to be County Road S.  We were thrilled that we did when we came upon this 875 foot tunnel.  In the middle of it, you could not see the walls or the other people you were walking with, but you could see the light at the end of the tunnel.

We did not expect to be on an epic bike ride when we headed out, so we brought our energetic puppy along.  Carly held up amazingly well, but the lucky girl did catch a ride from Papa sometimes when she started to lag behind :)

Co. Rd. S kept not appearing, (we'd unwittingly gone under it when we went through the tunnel) so eventually we took a random road in the general direction of home.  We stopped to ask this cow where we were.  Well, not the cow, there was a girl grooming her horse nearby and she informed us that our road was just ahead at the stop sign.  So, another mile or so and we came upon our road at last!
One more giant hill to walk up and home never looked so lovely and inviting, seven hours after we had headed out.
I checked out our route on google maps which has bike trails, and it was 20.5 miles that we rode together.  Not too shabby considering that we haven't been on our bikes much all summer.  I think we're all ready to go again next weekend, but I think this time we'll bring a cellphone with GPS.  Taking an extra 4 mile "shortcut" at the end of a long bike ride with three kids and a puppy may not be the way to go next time, but in the end, I think we were all proud of ourselves.  We celebrated by going out for pizza since no one was in the mood to cook.


  1. Well done, what a long journey, not sure my lot would make that distance, what a fab day out x

  2. What a fabulous day! Great pics too :) Thanks for sharing!

  3. Looks like a really good ride! I'm trying to find it in my Rails-to-Trails Wisconsin book. Is it the 400 trail?

  4. Hi Blue Faerie, It was the Omaha Trail. It meets up with the 400 Trail in Elroy


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