My ride is over, but the memories will last forever.

A life long dream fulfilled ... a great cause ... new friends ... amazing support

Thanks to everyone who helped make a difference!

I have maxed out the picture space on this blog. To see my postings for Day 42 (August 1st) onward click the link below:

GOTO Mark's Trek - NEW Daily BLOG (August 1st Onward)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Day 34 -- July 24th -- Wisconsin Dells, WI to Fond Du Lac, WI

Miles Ridden: 83.7
Avg Speed: 17.3
Avg Heart Rate: 114 bpm
Climbing: 1,850 ft
Calories Burned: 1,660 (need to recalibrate)

First In ... nice flat roads ... brats ... Ripon ... Fond Du Lac ... T-shirt exchange ... Dawn visits

Today' route and map --

The weatherman has been known to be wrong.  Today was thankfully one of those days.  The nasty and wet forecast just never materialized.  When we awoke at 6:00 AM, it was grey and raining.  As we finished breakfast at Denny's and loaded the truck, it began to clear.  That was the last of the rain we would see.  The roads dried up and the temperatures stayed very reasonable.  A short climb out of Wisconsin Dells revealed the honky tonk that is downtown.

One Of The Many Places Leaving The Dells
Soon after leaving town it was back to the quiet back roads of Wisconsin.  A little more civilization out here and towns appear slightly more often.  The roads were smooth and the shoulders were nice.  After about 5 miles with the Geldings, I pulled back on the throttle just a bit and let them go.  I found a nice pace and rode with Katie, Beth, and John (ME) for awhile, but eventually headed up the road on my own.  I increased my speed and found a good rhythm.  I made my way quickly through Packwaukee where the fisherman were already out and about.  A few miles before the first SAG, I caught Toronto Mark, and we pulled in to the SAG in Montello.  A nice swan fileld quarry was an ideal spot to refuel and snag a chocolate milk.

The Geldings Motor Up The Road

A Nice Spot to Rest and SAG
Mark and I headed out just before the other Geldings and were passed pretty soon there after.  They were flying today and we just wanted a slightly slower pace ... I ended the day at 17.3 mph, so I guess slowness is a relative thing.  About 12 miles up the road, we hit the town of Princeton.  Big doings there ... the VFW was selling brats (not nasty little kids, but big fat juicy sauerkraut laden sausages). Toronto Mark took the plunge.  Knowing my belly, I opted out, but enjoyed the fun discussion at the stop.  The VFW folks thought I was local at first because I had my Princeton water bottles (those of course come from my home town of Columbia and official bike sponsor Princeton Sports).  We told them about our trip and that more cyclists were coming.  We had passed the other Geldings, who were dealing with the first of Dave's bike issues (flat, chain, cassette, and hub).  While their speed was faster than ours, the down time kept them behind us.  Dave ended up riding Mike Munk's wheel in and needed new bearings in his rear hub.  A once in a lifetime picture opportunity emerged soon after the brats.

Jim Said We Had To Stop Here

Crystal Served Toronto Mark Quite The Brat

Now How Many Opportunities Like This Does One Guy Get?
The 2nd SAG was in Ripon, the home of Ripon College and the birthplace of the Republican party.  Ripon is a nice small liberal arts school and provides a Cannondale bike to all incoming freshman.  Nice campus and excellent facilities.  From there, Mark and I picked up the pace and opted to stay off the optional bike path route (I had enough of that yesterday) and flew in Fond Du Lac.  We were not technically the fastest riders today, but did arrive first at the hotel.  The hotel is right downtown and is a classic with a great lobby and facade.

Ripon College Arts Center

Birthplace Of The Other Side ...

Neat Old Hotel Right Downtown ... Moving On Up

Large, But Quiet Downtown
After a nice nap I perused downtown and took a sneak peak at Lake Winnebago and the infamous light house.  We will get another look at it on our way out of town tomorrow.  My good friend Dawn Taylor came up from Milwaukee around 4:00 and we headed out to Best Buy so I could buy a new camera.  I stuck with Canon as the interface and software would be familiar.  We came back for dinner, wrap, and the big Tshirt swap.  Dawn got a nice welcome and I walked off with a cool Levi Leipheimer jersey (a tad tight, but hey its Levi).  It was a fun game of swap and swap again.  Dawn and I grabbed a nice steak at Sebastion's steak house and then a tasty custard sundae at Gille's (a classic drive in joint).  It was fun to see Dawn and a nice change of pace ... plus a great no buffet meal.  Dawn is heading to Maine next week and will be at the finish line in Portsmouth ... only two weeks away!

Lake Winnebago Lighthouse

T-Shirt Exchange ... Bill Took the 25th Trek Across Maine Jersey

A Great Visit with Dawn

Custard at Gilles ... Beats DQ Hands Down
A nice short day tomorrow as way make our way to Manitowoc.  My dear friend Kari joins me for the evening ... two dates in a row ... cool beans.  With only 57 miles to cover, we get to sleep in big time.  Load is not until 8:30.

Good night moon ... good night Koltz Lane (how cool was that) ... good night new camera ... good nice great steak ... good night Dawn (thanks for a fun night) ... good night Kari (see you tomorrow around 3) ... good night 5th leg (only 2 left until the Atlantic)