Sunday, September 6, 2009

Day 4, Sunday, August 16

We woke to the sound of rain on the roof. This meant we were in no hurry to get out. I made breakfast and then took a morning nap.

Around 10:00 AM the rain stopped and we decided we'd head out on our ride. The plan is to head east and south and then loop around north and east on twisties. County C north to WI70 east to WI40 south to US8 west to County F north to WI70 west to County B and M south and looped around Long lake. Lloyd and Greg would head west from there back home while Jim, Bill and I would take more county roads around and around until we found our way back to my shack.

We were reading our bike side scripture out of a Psalm when the drizzle started. I finished reading quickly and slipped the bible into a plastic bag while Greg fished out his rain gear which he optimistically had hoped he wouldn't need. (the rest of us had already geared up). The rain kept picking up as we headed over to Radisson for a quick stop at the gas station. From there south on WI40 was a great, twisty road that we had to slow way down for because it was now pouring causing poor visibility and water on the road reducing traction. The rain was starting to let up a bit when we stopped at an unusual farmstead where the farmer had built a gazebo on top of his silo. A very unusual sight and a good photo op.

By the time we got to Bruce WI on Highway 8 the rain was done. But, of course, the roads were still slippery because of the wet. County F, north from Wayerhauser up to Birchwood is a great road which I had never taken before. I will definately get back on it someday when the roads are dry. By the time we got to Birchwood the sun was totally out and it was pretty obvious that the rain was done for the day. It was turning into a great day for a motorcycle ride. We hung out at the gas station for a bit, drying out and talking to other motorcyclists wo came by also out for a Sunday afternoon ride.

We then headed further north on County F up along Lake Chetek. The roads were now dry and we were able to fully appreciate the twisties on this great road. We then headed over to the town of Stone Lake for lunch in a bar and grill. The Hazeltine golf tournament was on the small TV with a NASCAR race on the big screen. We almost got into a fight with some large Wisconsin women over what to watch on the big screen (kidding). They won the argument when they pointed out that real bikers don't watch golf. (Plus, I think they could have taken us).

Our after lunch ride was around Long Lake south and west of town. Greg was most familiar with this ride in that his family vacations on Long Lake every year. We stopped at the resort where he stays and had a quicky tour. The place is very nice as well as the ride around the lake.

AFter the trip around the lake it was time to split up again. Lloyd and Greg needed to get back to the cities to go to work the next day. This left Bill, Jim and myself up to our own devices.

Us three headed back up towards Stone Lake where I had noticed a "Rustic Road". Rustic Roads are so designated by the state of Wisconsin as roads of some beauty, historic value and, as mentioned, rustic. The state has developed a program to encourage motorcyclists by giving them a patch and a certificate. All a biker needs to do is send in a certain number of pictures of him and the respective signage on each Rustic Road. I decided this was a perfect time to start the process. I had Bill take the appropriate picture and we headed on down the road. It was not terrible long in that it just wound around a small lake north of town. It wasn't very rustic either in that it reminded me of a typical suburban cull-de-sac with all the fancy lake houses. But, it was a start, one road down on my list.

From the Rustic Roads we started back onto our alphabet quest, taking various county roads east from Stone Lake and around the south side of the Chippewa Flowage. Then back south into Couderay and then back to my place.

Supper that night was hot dogs on the grill. We invited my neighbors over, Charlie and Rachel, my brother and sister-in-laws. Discussion that evening was reminiscing of motorcycle rides gone by that Charlie and I took up to 30 years ago. A fun evening, a fun day.