Friday, August 3, 2012

Our last days on the road!

 Day 92 – Union Bay to Ironwood ~ 40 miles

We woke up this morning and had our breakfast and did a bit of filming as we biked into the Porcupine Mountains State Park. We followed the southern boundary road through the park. The road was really hilly and it was hot, but it was a very beautiful ride through the park. We would climb to the top of a long hill and then crest and go down and do it again. It was like that until we got out of the park and into Wakefield.

Once we reached Wakefield we met up with Greg and Madeline at the grocery store and Kris and Zach ate a quick bite before we continued on towards Ironwood. At this point we were on highway 2 and the riding was a bit easier and quicker paced. We also crossed back into the Central Time Zone for the last time at some point on the ride. Once we reached Ironwood we headed towards our destination for the night. It was the home of a guy named Rich who is on the warm showers network. He wasn't going to be in town, but he was gracious enough to let us stay anyways. We went in and got changed while Greg and Madeline went into town. After we got settled we went into town and met up with them.

We stopped at a local place for food and beer and decided to go somewhere else for food after the first beer because there wasn't much on the menu for Madeline, who has food allergies. We went and had a nice dinner that Greg graciously paid for and then we parted ways. They wanted to continue on a bit farther still that afternoon.

We headed back to the place after stopping for groceries and a movie from the redbox. It was a perfect night to relax. We watched the movie and had snacks and just relaxed. It was great! Tomorrow we are heading to Ashland.

Day 93 – Ironwood to Ashland ~ 38 miles

We woke up this morning at around 9:30 or so and sat in the kitchen and ate our breakfast. We packed up our things and hopped back onto the highway and headed towards Wisconsin. We crossed the border pretty much right away in the morning and the roads were pretty good, allowing us to keep decent pace.

About an hour into the ride the clouds moved in and it started to rain really big rain drops. Thankfully it didn't last more than a half hour and we were able to continue on with less worry of the traffic. Outside of Ashland a ways we cruised down a huge hill that we could see Ashland from the top of. It was a high point of the ride.

We reached Ashland and had to deal with the road construction at the edge of town. At some point in the construction Zach got a slow leak in his rear tire, which he would discover later was caused by a rusted nail. Once we got into town we went to a fast food joint for lunch. After lunch we headed to our host Tiffany's house. She lives right in town on the main drag. She has been following our trip and offer a place to stay. We sat on the porch for a while and then watched a bit of the Olympics on TV while Tiffany was at a work meeting.

When she got back we headed downtown for dinner at the South Shore Brewery. We had really great food and good beer and watched more Olympics. Kris had the Curd Burglar. It is a burger with jalapeno cheese curds, bacon, lettuce, and some kind of sauce. Zach had an awesome patty melt and some wings. We will definitely go back there for food.

After dinner we walked back to Tiffany's place and hung out on the porch for a bit and then watched Capt'n Ron. Classic movie. Are headed to Little Sand Bay tomorrow to spend a couple nights with our friend Lane who is working for the park service this summer. We are excited to be there and see him.

Day 94 – Ashland to Little Sand Bay

We woke up and had breakfast and packed up our things. We walked outside and immediately discovered that it was going to be a really hot day. Zach patched his flat and then we were on our way. Tiffany biked with us down the path until we reached the artesian well which is just on the edge of town. We filled up our water there and then said our goodbyes and headed down the road. Before we made the turn off of highway 2 onto 13 we stopped at the Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center. It was totally worth the stop and the exhibits were great. Afterwards we hopped onto 13 and started north.

We went through Washburn and then had to climb a couple of really sizable hills to reach the nice coast into Bayfield. Bayfield is a gorgeous town and is right at the gateway to the Apostle Islands. It is also a major berry and orchard capital of the region. We coasted into town and then met up with Greg and Madeline who spent last night in Washburn. We had lunch together and then picked up some groceries and headed towards Lane's place in Little Sand Bay. Unfortunately it was a really hilly ride the rest of the way.

We reached his house and just as we pulled in Lane pulled up behind us in his car. He had come from Bayfield after working on one of the islands for the day. The three of us went for a swim and then headed back into Bayfield for dinner. After eating we stopped at one more bar for a drink and then headed back to Lane's place for a campfire on the beach. The three of us sat on the beach and enjoyed each others company. Lane went to bed around 11 or midnight and Kris and Zach stayed on the beach until 2:30. We talked about the trip and what we had accomplished and what we are going to do when we get back. It was that last night of solitude that we are going to have on the trip and it was a really nice way to spend it. We were able to get a lot of thoughts and ideas off of our chest and reminisce about the trip.

Day 95 – Rest Day: Little Sand Bay

We woke up at 10 this morning, even though we definitely could have slept longer. We ate and then headed to the visitors center to see if we could get a tour of the old fishery that is on the bay. It was started in the 1930's by 3 brothers and they were successful commercial fisherman for 30 years. Most all of their buildings and gear are still in amazing shape. It was really cool to see how they operated.

After the tour we ate our lunch and did some filming. We headed into town around 3:30 to get a few things done on the computer and pick up Lane from work. We are headed to a fish fry tonight and tomorrow we are pedaling our last long day to Wisconsin Point in Superior, WI. We are camping out on the beach tomorrow night and a bunch of our friends are going to be out there with us. It is going to be a lot of fun and a great way to come home.

It is going to be a really difficult adjustment back into the normal swing of things, but we know we can do it with time. It is hard to think about because we have had such an amazing time on this journey and it has become our life. We can't thank everyone who helped us along the way enough. We love you guys! The experiences we had meeting people are what made the trip for us.

It is time to move on to other things, but we are only partially done with this journey. The days of production and presentations are approaching quickly, and we are really excited for that.

Here's to great friends, great lakes, and great adventures!

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