A mild January morning here, 29.7 degrees F as I'm typing, a flawless pre-dawn sky and as reported by the same people that are dividing our degrees up in to tenths of those smaller "F" degrees, a "waning crescent, 6% visible" moon. Just back from getting gas in the plow truck, I can attest that it's a lovely morning. It would be a lovely morning for a bike ride, other than the harsh reality of that 29.7 degrees F part and our very icy driveway.
My cup is here next to me, full, hot and after coming in from parking the truck, it felt really nice having my fingers wrapped around the big mug. I've not felt well the best part of a week now and have spent far too much time lying down, staying warm and quiet. Naturally, thoughts of (warm) riding and coffee are easy to come by, especially easy for me early on a Sunday morning.
Almost exactly three years ago I Posted about a Coffee Ride that happened 5 short years ago. That one found a group of us gathering on Washington Island, just about the northern most point of Door County, Wisconsin. It was officially a coffee gathering and truer by definition for my friends that rode up from the Chicago/Milwaukee area since most if not all of those folks came up for the day. I went over for a long weekend (something I feel absolutely no shame about) and we all had a great time, day trip or not.
This morning though, my mind wandered back to C.R.'s that were more normal, i.e. out early and home before the rest of the family was awake :) Memory took me back to August of '09, a lovely late summer day. Of course my ride that day started before sunrise on the Helix, Ultimate Touring Machine.
At the Minnesota/Iowa border marker, New Albin, Iowa. It was too early to stop for my favorite jerky, so that had to wait until I was on my way home.
Early morning, summer fog.....just imagining that warmer wet air is feeling good!
I pretty much followed my normal path to downtown Dubuque, Cafe Manna Java our destination..... Hwy 26, Iowa Cr-X52, Hwy 76, X56, US 52 into Guttenberg. No I didn't stop for ice cream but if it had been later in the day.....wait, I DID stop later in the day. South on a short stretch of US52 before turning on to the world famous C9Y through Balltown to Sageville and finally to downtown Dubuque. It seems that I've almost worn these roads out following the Mississippi down the east coast of Iowa but no worries, there's simply no danger of that.
We found it. Surprisingly enough, many of those same characters that gathered on Washington Island for coffee back in '10 were thirsty enough to make this trip as well.
Naturally the yellow one finds its place among the other Ultimate Touring Machines.
Filled with coffee, most everyone decided to swing north out of town and ride that aforementioned famous C9Y.....some of us quite a bit more rushed than others.
There was a stop at the overlook in Balltown.....
Another one at Pike's Peak State Park......
Most everyone else had come over from Wisconsin and Illinois; Don was the only Iowa rider as I recall and I the only one from MN. Heading back north, I for the most part took the same route though did make more stops than I had on the way down.
Never stopping before at the Heitman Landing, this was the trip to remedy that problem.
This very green carpet is not really.
410 miles for the day and though I don't remember for sure, it was entirely possible that it was time for another cup.