Westby, Wisconsin on Labor Day 2021, my 15th year of attendance at our motel rally that hints at but isn't quite officially a marker for summer's end. Since it had been quite some time since the '82 Honda 400 Automatic had made the rally scene, it was the vehicle of choice (it also had sufficient rubber in back). I started my rally weekend a bit early, right after work Thursday early, meandering down to Westby in no hurry, the pace that both I and the 400 prefer.
I stopped for dinner in Coon Valley, no need to rush to the motel, I've had reservations since March.
Bright and early Friday morning I met Eric in Cashton for breakfast, then back to Westby so that he could get registered.
Eric had a southerly gravel Route planned, we rode as far as Viroqua together where I stopped at the Vernon County Historical Museum while he continued on towards Prairie du Chien. When I discovered that the Museum didn't open until 11:00 I decided to wander a gravel loop south of town with the idea that I'd return early afternoon for some museum time. Besides, it looked more and more like rain.
A big storm had passed through the area in early August and their backroads suffered once more....they just don't seem to get a break.
I saw no bridges that had been taken out but almost every one of the them had approach damage, both sides of the spans suffered and were damaged, some quite badly.
The rain started again, I needed coffee and something to eat so it was back to Viroqua. After some soup and coffee it was time for the museum.
I'll focus on more of what I saw in the museum in another Post.
Friday evening more of the ralliers began to arrive....
After the Rider's Meeting, everyone split up into groups. I went out on my own.
Tobacco is still grown in the area though not in quantities that it once was.
Stopped for a break in LaFarge...
Saturday my only real goal was to meet up with KK on his Trans Wisconsin Adventure Trail. We were doing the best that we could to text back and forth. As we were closing in on our rendezvous, I waited here for awhile where the Route crosses Hwy 33.
While I waited, these two bikes stopped while heading east on 33. I recognized the machines that had been on the wet trailer in downtown Westby next to our breakfast cafe (photo above). They shared that they had come up from the Chicago area and do so every year over the Labor Day weekend. After making sure that I was OK, they wondered if the road I'd just come down "was any good". We all smiled, fully aware that they are "All good".
We finally met in Ontario, he was off to a great start on his way using as much gravel and as many sandy, soft fireroads as possible to touch the shore of Wisconsin's most northerly point. He'd started out from the Marquette, Iowa area that morning. I've since learned that he made it, then headed west into Minnesota and ventured to the Canadian border on the Minnesota North Shore before heading back home to the south.
He reported that the trip was a very good one, a sign of that, ".....I learned a lot....". We all do, each and every time out and back.
Back at Rally HQ, the Old Towne Inn in Westby...I always try to get them all but some get missed.
German store in Norwegian Westby...
Ice Cream stop at the Goose Barn....Mike and Colleen just happened to be there at the same time!
Sunday dinner in Viroqua...
After the auction, I stopped in Cashton for breakfast and then worked my way home.
I was proud (and expected) that the Honda did as well as it did on the trip and is now added to the "Need New Tire Before Next Season" list which has grown quite long....I'm down to only a couple of machines to eek out the rest of 2021's riding season.
A great Rally, thanks again to Adam and his assistants for their time and efforts that keep this unofficial gathering going.