Sunday, January 18, 2015

Coffee And Ridin'

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.


  1. Coffee is a good enough reason to get out and about on your bike. Wait, you clocked 410 miles? Holy crap, if I started at my doorstep I would be at the Côte d'Azur by then ;-)

    1. Well this was one of the longer trips. A nice day, easy riding, good company and great roads. It was all very tasty. :)

  2. Coffee and riding?! What is better in life? Nothing!

    I look out the window at the warmth and sunshine and dream of riding, but man is that cold air!

    Then I drive around back roads and make note of here and there that I will plan to visit on my scoot in the spring. Oh the agony of the wait!

    But today I got to go on a ride with you and your buds and it was "mighty fine" indeed!

    Thank you for that and hope things warm up real quick your way!

    Great ride!

  3. 410 miles for coffee? That's impressive. My best is 225 miles round trip for a root beer...

    This has been a disappointing winter for snow. Maybe we'll get hit harder in Feb and March. Stay warm.


    1. We are less than 2 miles from a place that many people enjoy their early morning coffee at.....I've never been there in the morning.

      Once again, we've almost completely lost our snow cover. If it's going to happen, it better get started very soon. We need bare ground again before April. :)

  4. 410 miles for coffee with friends? Sounds good to me!

    1. I'm hoping to accomplish another one of these distant gatherings again this season. Right now it sounds great to me too!

  5. A chilly winters day is a good time to drink coffee and remember fond rides.

    Hope you are feeling back to 100% soon.

    1. A good time and environment for rebuilding some strength. I'm feeling better this evening, thanks!