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Rural Wisconsin - Old Rider-Racer

Old 08-02-23, 11:31 AM
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Rural Wisconsin - Old Rider-Racer

Soon to be 69, Surly Pacer with a bunch of nuveau vintage stuff - Nitto track bars, drilled and offset brake levers, downtube shifters, did have rat cage pedals but finally got some clip ins. Raced triathlon, biathlon, crits, road races from college in the early 80s to a 30 something miler about 10 years ago. Also did some bike touring/camping. Had some health problems so I haven't ridden much in the last bunch of years but I'm back on and find I still like to put my nose on the stem and crank, to the extent I can crank. Never thought I'd be riding like I am ever again so I'm going to enjoy it while I can. I live on a farm in rural WI and have a lot of great roads without a lot of traffic, but seemingly a disproportionate number of inattentive drivers looking at their phones or the neighbor's crops or whatever. Bicyclists are a rarity in my area and people aren't used to having us on the road, so I have the bright rear flashers and I watch my mirror a lot more than I used to. Anyway, that's me and where I'm at in a nutshell. Just here to ask a couple of questions and lurk.
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Old 08-02-23, 12:16 PM
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Welcome.

All are welcome, but experienced cyclists often have more to contribute. And after your 10 posts - we love pics!


Did you say downtube shifters?
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Old 08-02-23, 12:17 PM
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Old 08-02-23, 12:26 PM
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Welcome, there is some great riding in WI. If I were riding a lot of rurals roads, I'd consider getting one of the Garmin radar tail lights, https://www.garmin.com/en-US/p/698001

I ride mainly bike paths so I haven't picked one up. They do look interesting.
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Old 08-02-23, 12:33 PM
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I'm seeing people have "Likes" but I'm not seeing a "Like" button anywhere or I'd like all of the foregoing posts. Thanks very much for the welcome.
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Old 08-03-23, 01:10 PM
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Welcome Cheesehead! (I say that in jest as a former Yooper)
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Old 08-03-23, 01:40 PM
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Welcome to the forum. Whereabouts in WI are you? Lots of us love riding in the SW driftless area and I've done a lot of riding up in the north woods. Both are some of the best riding I've done.
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Old 08-04-23, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Sedgemop
Welcome to the forum. Whereabouts in WI are you? Lots of us love riding in the SW driftless area and I've done a lot of riding up in the north woods. Both are some of the best riding I've done.
I'm between Mauston and Elroy right on 82 which puts me on the edge of the Driftless area. I'm big on dual sport motorcycles as well and have toured all through the Driftless across into Iowa and north to MN on both tarmac and dirt - beautiful topography. I did the Trans-WI Adventure Trail up to the Flambeau parks. I drove up to Ashland with my bike. That was beautiful but the hills kicked my butt. My range by bicycle is much more modest so I mostly do the small farm roads in my area - plenty of bluffs to huff and puff up. The state just repaved 82 with wide, smooth shoulders on the outside of deep rumble strips so when I just want to spin, it's great.

Thanks again for the welcomes!
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Old 08-04-23, 07:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Bernie77
I'm between Mauston and Elroy right on 82 which puts me on the edge of the Driftless area. I'm big on dual sport motorcycles as well and have toured all through the Driftless across into Iowa and north to MN on both tarmac and dirt - beautiful topography. I did the Trans-WI Adventure Trail up to the Flambeau parks. I drove up to Ashland with my bike. That was beautiful but the hills kicked my butt. My range by bicycle is much more modest so I mostly do the small farm roads in my area - plenty of bluffs to huff and puff up. The state just repaved 82 with wide, smooth shoulders on the outside of deep rumble strips so when I just want to spin, it's great.

Thanks again for the welcomes!
Those are some good motorcycle adventures. That's good news on 82. I usually stay away from busier roads like that due to narrow shoulders and surprise rumble strips. Some of us are doing this ride not far from you in September. Maybe we'll see you out there.

https://www.csacoalition.org/bike-the-barns
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Old 08-06-23, 02:12 AM
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Welcome!
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Old 08-06-23, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by IdahoBrett
Welcome Cheesehead! (I say that in jest as a former Yooper)
I'm a current Yooper (Houghton born and raised and still present). Where were you in the yoop?
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Old 08-06-23, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Bernie77
Soon to be 69, Surly Pacer with a bunch of nuveau vintage stuff - Nitto track bars, drilled and offset brake levers, downtube shifters, did have rat cage pedals but finally got some clip ins. Raced triathlon, biathlon, crits, road races from college in the early 80s to a 30 something miler about 10 years ago. Also did some bike touring/camping. Had some health problems so I haven't ridden much in the last bunch of years but I'm back on and find I still like to put my nose on the stem and crank, to the extent I can crank. Never thought I'd be riding like I am ever again so I'm going to enjoy it while I can. I live on a farm in rural WI and have a lot of great roads without a lot of traffic, but seemingly a disproportionate number of inattentive drivers looking at their phones or the neighbor's crops or whatever. Bicyclists are a rarity in my area and people aren't used to having us on the road, so I have the bright rear flashers and I watch my mirror a lot more than I used to. Anyway, that's me and where I'm at in a nutshell. Just here to ask a couple of questions and lurk.
Welcome! I'm in the same neck of the woods a few hours north of y'all in the yoop. I can commiserate with the driver-cyclist-pedestrian relationship in rural north mid-Western towns...
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Old 08-06-23, 04:17 PM
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Hiya. Cheesehead expat here. Born in Eau Claire, grew up in Kenosha County before committing the mortal sin of moving to Illannoy almost 50 years ago. I'm familiar with the Elroy Mauston area. I also rode the Driftless Area part of the Trans WI Adventure Trail on my Ural last year. I opted for WI16/US12/US53/US63 to Cornucopia after wrestling the loaded rig to Sparta. Still a nicer ride than 39/90/94.
I have a similar situation here in the Corn Canyons of rural Illannoy with quiet roads, no shoulders, and inattentive drivers. Though, there are a lot more cyclists with a college town not far from here.

One more thing, GO PACK GO.
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Old 08-06-23, 04:25 PM
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Newish member here, reverse experience.

Expat Illinoisian, born in Chicago in 1949 & lived in NW suburbs until about this time in 2013 when wife & I decided it was time to make an exit.

We're in the Driftless Region now, live about a mile off the same Route 14 that was two blocks from where I grew up in Arlington Heights.

Lovely biking up here compared to the 'flatlander' experience below the border... though I admit I did find some elevation in McHenry County when we bought a house in 1977 (subsequently deemed unlivable during the winter so I built a new one over the old, all while we lived there and I worked in Chicago full time) and the railroad line across the street got turned into a bike path.
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