October 2008

Here are pictures from three rides I took during October.

The first ride was the Elroy-Sparta Trail in Wisconsin, with my friends Byron and Norm. The Elroy-Sparta was one of the first rails-to-trails conversions in the country. It follows the path of a Chicago & Northwestern railbed somewhere between Madison and Prairie du Chien. A somewhat unusual feature is the three tunnels.

The three musketeers get ready to ride in Elroy.

Getting ready for an energy boost.

The famous Pies Are Square restaurant in Wilton.

Preparing to enter the first tunnel.

Information plaque on the last tunnel.

Stopping on the trail for some pictures.

A house on a rock.

A farm near the trail.

The second ride was along segments of old Route 66 south of Springfield, Illinois. The 3-day trip was arranged by Tom and Julie, and their car was used for luggage transport. We rode 50 to 55 miles per day, staying overnight in motels.

Day 1: Springfield to Litchfield.

Loading the luggage into the support van the first morning.

At the Illlinois State Capital in Springfield.

The frontage road of Interstate 55 is old Route 66.

Riders pass the support vehicle next to Interstate 55.

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Day 2: Litchfield to Carlinville

Sunday morning in Litchfield.

Notices in a gas station in Mount Olive.

Old gas station in Mount Olive.

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Gas was cheaper once.

Photo ops at old gas station.

Riding the rabbit

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Rabbit cemetery #1.

Rabbit cemetery #2.

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Lunch stop in Staunton.

Crossing the Staunton Reservoir.

Dinosaur factory in Benld.

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Day 3: Carlinville to Springfield

Repairing a tire on a very old section of 66

This rough road also stretched some spokes.

Lunch stop in Virden.

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In front of Abe Lincoln's old house.

The third ride was my traditional trails-to-rails ride into Chicago. We ride our bikes from Geneva, along trails and streets, into Chicago, where we have lunch at the Handlebar. After lunch we ride to the Olgivie Transportation Center, load our bikes on the commuter train, and relax for an hour.

A highlight of the ride was seeing the smokestack at the old Ovaltine factory, just days before it was dynamited.

We heard gunshots less than an hour into the ride, and we were nowhere near Chicago.

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Arriving at the Handlebar.

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Gathering the group for the souvenir photo.

NOT the souvenir photo.

The souvenir photo.