Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Western North Carolina

We drove to North Carolina during the week of October 20, spending 3 days in Celo, NC at the Celo Inn and the remainder of the week in Wilmington, NC visiting Kay's folks.

We made the trip in the car, and broke down the S&S-coupled Surly Cross-Check bikes into their travel boxes so we could haul the bikes in the car. We also had the roof rack on the car so we'd have some flexibility.

We had three days of riding in Western North Carolina. The Celo Inn owner Randy asked if we'd like to join him and his neighbor Linda on a 3 or 4 hour ride, and we took him up on that. We ended up riding 55 miles that day, and the terrain in the Celo/Burnsville area is such that you are climbing or descending at all times. The fall colors were great and the few motorists that we encountered were patient. We also rode on Monday and Tuesday.

Props to the Celo Inn, its a great place to stay. Rates are extremely reasonable and Randy and Nancy do a great job. Breakfast is served there, and they make refrigerator space available to guests if you need it. (This is a rural area and the restaurant choices are limited). We scored some food from the Earth Fare store in Asheville for our dinners. We can't wait to get back there.

Visiting Kay's parents was great. Its been a few years since I have been there. Kay has made about 5 trips there since December of 2007.

The drive home went well. We drove from Wilmington to Dayton, Ohio on the first day. Day 2 we drove home to Minneapolis, and took a few hours in Chicago and had lunch with a friend. After that we drove through Milwaukee to get coffee from Alterra and a sandwhich to go from the Fuel Cafe.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Waupaca Again

We just concluded our third weekend of the year in Waupaca, Wisconsin. We made this trip so we could bike-crawl the Hidden Studios art crawl, which is an annual event. This year there were ten studios on the tour and we visited 8 of them.

The roads there are just as you see in this picture... scenic and with few cars. The only exception was a small pocket of apparent inbreeding precisely where County A interests with County GG in Portage County. There we were harassed a little bit by a bearded dude in a pick-up truck hauling wood. It was no big deal, after rolling past us he rolled own the window, waited for what seemed like an hour and said "go back to the city". OK, sure. Every other motorist, the few that we encountered, were cool.

Sadly our group for this weekend was 4 and not 6 people. Our good friend Jon recently passed away at the age of 45 as a result of a heart attack. We're devastated by this, but obviously not nearly to the extent that his wife Diane is. We'll miss Jon, and we all thought about him and Diane all weekend.