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  1. #1
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    Upcoming trips to Chicago and Milwaukee

    All-
    I will be visiting the Chicago area mid september and will be there about a week. I'll being staying in Evanston, I think the address is Chicago Ave. and Main, but I'm not exactly sure about that. Anyway my wife and I plan to bring our bikes with us to do some riding in the area. I'd be interested in knowing if any of you have a particular route or trail you'd recommend?, we are comfortable riding 40 miles a day. We're not necessarily looking for a group ride, but we'd consider it. Also is there a preferred route for getting from Evanston to the Loop? and once there is are there secure places to park your bike?

    In mid-October we're going to be going to Milwaukee to attend a wedding, and again we are planning on taking our bikes and going up a couple of days ahead of the wedding. Are there any trails that anyone one can recommend in that area? wouldn't necessarily need to be in Milwaukee but would like to keep it within a hundred miles or so.

    thanks for your help

    bernie

  2. #2
    Senior Member awfulwaffle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bernie_l View Post
    All-
    I will be visiting the Chicago area mid september and will be there about a week. I'll being staying in Evanston, I think the address is Chicago Ave. and Main, but I'm not exactly sure about that. Anyway my wife and I plan to bring our bikes with us to do some riding in the area. I'd be interested in knowing if any of you have a particular route or trail you'd recommend?, we are comfortable riding 40 miles a day. We're not necessarily looking for a group ride, but we'd consider it. Also is there a preferred route for getting from Evanston to the Loop? and once there is are there secure places to park your bike?

    In mid-October we're going to be going to Milwaukee to attend a wedding, and again we are planning on taking our bikes and going up a couple of days ahead of the wedding. Are there any trails that anyone one can recommend in that area? wouldn't necessarily need to be in Milwaukee but would like to keep it within a hundred miles or so.

    thanks for your help

    bernie

    I've got two favorites around the Milwaukee area:

    1. Heading North

    The Oak Leaf Trail/Ozaukee Interurban trail (they're connected) will take you from downtown Milwaukee to a ways north of Port Washington. Fun ride, with nicely paved trails for 80% of the journey, with the remaining being a few sections of city streets in Whitefish Bay, Glendale, Grafton and Port Washington. The city street sections have signs to guide you along except in Whitefish Bay and Glendale, but I could provide you with good directions to get you from where the trail ends in Whitefish Bay to where it picks up again in Glendale. It's a bit longer than your 40 mile requirement, but it's definitely worth it. If you'd like to keep it at 40 miles, you could start at any number of places instead of downtown Milwaukee, but whatever you choose I highly recommend riding up through downtown Port Washington and taking a stop at Lake Park. It's very scenic up there.

    2. Heading West

    Starting from very near where the Oak Leaf does in downtown Milwaukee is the Hank Aaron State Trail. It connects with the Glacial Drumlin State Trail which connects to other trails all the way out to Madison, with a bit of street riding in Jefferson. If you're limiting yourself to 40 miles you won't leave the Glacial Drumlin, so I'll save you the description of what comes after Unlike the Oak Leaf/Ozaukee route, the majority of the Glacial Drumlin is crushed limestone so don't think you'll get away with road slicks, though I've got a friend who rode with slicks and managed to not get a flat all the way to Madison and back.

    Feel free to ask if you'd like any details about either trail!
    Last edited by awfulwaffle; 08-18-13 at 08:19 PM.

  3. #3
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    Here are maps showing the trails awfulwaffle posted of: http://city.milwaukee.gov/maps4460.htm There is also a Wisconsin Bike map on that page if you scroll down.

    Where about are you staying? And/or do you plan on driving to the start of your rides?

    I live just north of Milwaukee and a nice option is to take the Oak leaf/Inter-urban trail north towards Port Washington and then ride back along Lake Michigan (County Hwy C to Lake Shore Drive). Even if you don't go all the way to Port Washington there are plenty of places to make the cut over towards the Lake and the roads out there are fairly low traffic. Depending on when you ride you may see more bikes than cars.
    Last edited by canam73; 08-19-13 at 09:24 AM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member awfulwaffle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by canam73 View Post

    a nice option is to take the Oak leaf/Inter-urban trail north towards Port Washington and then ride back along Lake Michigan (County Hwy C to Lake Shore Drive).
    I think I have a new route back to try this weekend

  5. #5
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    Thanks, I've looked at that route on Google maps and I received another response with maps linked. I realize it's difficult to predict, but typically what would the weather be like around Milwaukee in mid-October? Here in Nebraska it can be anything from 80 to 15 degrees, but generally runs towards the cool side of things, 30-50.

    thanks for the feedback.

    BTW we're going to Chicago next month and of course taking our bikes, not that I'm planning on doing it, but how difficult is it to ride from Chicago to Milwaukee? it doesn't look all that far.

    Quote Originally Posted by awfulwaffle View Post
    I've got two favorites around the Milwaukee area:

    1. Heading North

    The Oak Leaf Trail/Ozaukee Interurban trail (they're connected) will take you from downtown Milwaukee to a ways north of Port Washington. Fun ride, with nicely paved trails for 80% of the journey, with the remaining being a few sections of city streets in Whitefish Bay, Glendale, Grafton and Port Washington. The city street sections have signs to guide you along except in Whitefish Bay and Glendale, but I could provide you with good directions to get you from where the trail ends in Whitefish Bay to where it picks up again in Glendale. It's a bit longer than your 40 mile requirement, but it's definitely worth it. If you'd like to keep it at 40 miles, you could start at any number of places instead of downtown Milwaukee, but whatever you choose I highly recommend riding up through downtown Port Washington and taking a stop at Lake Park. It's very scenic up there.

    2. Heading West

    Starting from very near where the Oak Leaf does in downtown Milwaukee is the Hank Aaron State Trail. It connects with the Glacial Drumlin State Trail which connects to other trails all the way out to Madison, with a bit of street riding in Jefferson. If you're limiting yourself to 40 miles you won't leave the Glacial Drumlin, so I'll save you the description of what comes after Unlike the Oak Leaf/Ozaukee route, the majority of the Glacial Drumlin is crushed limestone so don't think you'll get away with road slicks, though I've got a friend who rode with slicks and managed to not get a flat all the way to Madison and back.

    Feel free to ask if you'd like any details about either trail!

  6. #6
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    We're staying downtown Milwaukee, but we'll have a vehicle so we can haul our bikes to where ever we want to start. thanks for the info and the maps I'll check them out.

    bernie

  7. #7
    Senior Member awfulwaffle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bernie_l View Post
    Thanks, I've looked at that route on Google maps and I received another response with maps linked. I realize it's difficult to predict, but typically what would the weather be like around Milwaukee in mid-October? Here in Nebraska it can be anything from 80 to 15 degrees, but generally runs towards the cool side of things, 30-50.

    thanks for the feedback.

    BTW we're going to Chicago next month and of course taking our bikes, not that I'm planning on doing it, but how difficult is it to ride from Chicago to Milwaukee? it doesn't look all that far.
    Our weather is pretty similar to the 30-50 range you mentioned, though it can be warmer on occasion. October is usually when I start wearing thermals on my rides, so just make sure you bring some with just in case.

    As for Chicago to Milwaukee, I couldn't tell ya. Farthest I've gone southbound is to Racine, but I've for sure seen people on here discuss doing it. As I recall, it involves a lot of public road riding. I think there's a thread somewhere in this sectiin about it.

    Good luck and have fun on your rides!

  8. #8
    Senior Member awfulwaffle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bernie_l View Post
    We're staying downtown Milwaukee, but we'll have a vehicle so we can haul our bikes to where ever we want to start. thanks for the info and the maps I'll check them out.

    bernie
    Oh well that's perfect then. I recommend driving to Brown Deer Park and starting from there, as it will allow you to avoid all of the unmarked road riding sections I mentioned in the northbound route I described.

  9. #9
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    Hi Bernie

    GITride12 Map will take you to the loop from Evanston. I think you need to go a little bit West from Evanston to pick it up though. (As I remember?)

    Mostly Path.
    Last edited by GITride; 09-07-13 at 11:31 AM. Reason: Mostly Path.
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  10. #10
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Here are a few nice rides from Evanston. These routes are very popular with cyclist and are on bike friendly streets with a safe shoulder and/or light traffic.

    The entire round trip is about 45 miles. At mile 29 look for the Northshore bike path and take that for a loop that brings you back to this location.

    http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/284563281

    The Chicago Lakefront bike path is very scenic. If you can use it midweek, you will avoid the thousands of walker and runners that keep it packed with people on the weekend.

    While it's not to difficult to ride from Evanston to the Chicago lakefront, driving to the lakefront and parking the car is less stressful.
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 09-07-13 at 08:09 AM.
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  11. #11
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    Thanks for the reccomendation, we're looking forward to the trip and a nice ride in new area

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by GITride View Post
    Hi Bernie

    GITride12 Map will take you to the loop from Evanston. I think you need to go a little bit West from Evanston to pick it up though. (As I remember?)

    Mostly Path.
    thanks for the info, I'll get the map

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