Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Riding the Namekagon Barrens

We woke up this morning to some fog and when the fog lifted, we had a nice covering on the trees.  As I looked out the window the question came to mind..."Where do I ride today?"

I had scoped out Fat-bike riding the Namekagon Barrens last week and today was the day.

The ride today took me into three different Northwest Wisconsin counties.  I had to chuckle when I read the sign above.  Class B highway...hehehe  You would have to know the road.  Highway does not fit!!

The Namekagon Barrens is a wildlife area that is in excess of 5000 acres.  It is just what it says...Barren.  And then some more actually, because there is nothing but wild land for miles bordering most of it.  That means with the combination of public forest land and the barrens itself, it equals miles and miles of bush out here.  This link will take you to more information of this gem.  

This was the lunch spot today. It is called Clemens Creek Pond.

I tried to load a video of the lunch spot but Blogger was not cooperating.  This is a picture heavy post already, so we will see.

The sand is starting to show on some areas.  That is a good sign spring is on the way.  Also a note of good news in my opinion is that Daylight Savings starts in LESS than TWO weeks.  

Signs to get your Barrens.  :-)

I am not sure, but I may have had relatives that attended the school this sign references.  I am thinking so.  Hard to believe there was a school here.  As I said before, this is out in the bush.

I was surprised by the size of some of the hills I rode today...against the wind no less.

I picked up the snowmobile trail and rode that for a ways also.  It was good riding and I met no snowmobiles.  Actually I rode for almost 3 hours today and saw 5 snowmobiles and one truck when I was less than a quarter mile from the finish point.  Great riding today is an understatement.

I will try another video.  This is riding the snowmobile trail.  The temperature rose to about 40°F today and we had a strong ENE wind.  We are expecting mild temperatures for the next week, so the snow will be diminishing along with the Fat-bike conditions. That will be OK though.  I have other bikes to ride and trails to walk. 

Lets get outdoors and have some fun!!

Friday, February 15, 2013


 I got out for a sweet ride yesterday.  Those that bicycle know how the wind influences the effort needed to propel the machine forward.  I knew before I left the warmth of home I was in for a good fight on this day.  It was well worth it.  If one waits for the conditions to be ideal, they would spend a lot of time indoors.    

 This was the lunch spot on this day along with the obligatory picture of the bicycle of choice today.

 I rode many back roads.  The above picture is from Buckley Island Drive.  This road is a dead end that travels near 5.5 miles back in the bush.  What was great about his road is goes downhill the last 1.5 miles...dead end remember.  This day meant climbing back out against the wind. :-)  You may be able to see that there were tracks of one vehicle that also traveled this road.  They were looking for critter tracks...maybe Bobcat or Coyote.  We had a dusting of snow, so they traveled the road looking for tracks of their prey.

On some roads, there were no tracks.  This ride started with a temp of about 25°F and ended with the temp of 20°F with a strong wind.  A wind to make a person stronger.  It had me out for over 3 hours.  Over three hours of sweetness, that is.

Lets get outdoors and have some Fun!!   

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Caching Ski

 I contemplated this morning on which I should do.  Bicycle or Cross Country Ski.  At the last second I decided on the ski.  I decided on a trip to our neighboring township to the east of us, Barnes WI, which has a nice trail system at their town park on Tomahawk Lake.  (click here for park link)  Today the trail had been groomed but not tracked, but it is usually tracked classical.  They first use a roller type affair to flattened it like shown above and then come back to set the tracks.  I came in at the half way point of the process. 

 This was the lunch spot today  (PB and honey on light wheat again)

 This trail post got my attention.  It is severely marked up.

 I knew what had caused the damage without looking, but Mr. Black Bear left proof.  It's a crappy picture, but you can see the hair he left behind.  Among some of the reasons is that they do this to mark scent.  I will link a site with some information on this behavior here. (click)

 At around noon I noticed the snow began to get sticky.  An hour later is when I decided I need to invest in some new skis.  The ones I have are waxless, (note they still need some wax, weird).  I want to get some waxable ones.  I think I may be able to adapt better to the conditions with the waxable. 

 I knew the trail has a big hairpin to it, so I used the cross country part of the skis to actually go cross country to save some of the sticky.

 Today I also added in some Geocaching. A caching ski, one might say.

This was a unique container.  Logged my cache name and moved on. 

Thanks for reading,
Lets get outdoors and have some fun!!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Terrific, Tremendous and Transcendent

 We had a snow storm come through the yesterday, but we didn't get as much snow as people in our surrounding area.  We only had about 4 inches.  I had the driveway plowed and the walks and deck shoveled by 9 AM. 

 And, the critters fed.  Now What??   

 I know...:-)  A bicycle ride!!

 The storm we did receive was rain first, then ice pellets for a while, then some monster wet flakes and it finished off to be a consistency that was not great for riding the trails.

 So I rode the back roads again.

 It flurried some more snow while I was out, but nothing that is going to add up.  

The ride today had me out for over 2½ hours.  The temp hovered around the 25°F, big giant snow flakes drifted to the ground, the wind howled and the roads were plowed...terrific, tremendous and transcendent!!  :-)

Lets get outdoors and have some Fun!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Join Me

 We received about another 3" of snow early yesterday morning, so I packed the local trails last night.  This morning I thought I would give them a try, but they were still soft.  I think I had about 5 pounds of air in. Not too sure how accurate the gauge is I have, but there were about 3 wrinkles in the back tire when pedaling.  I could ride them, but it was tough and I didn't want to muck up the trails, so I headed for the back roads. This local lake has a rather large ice bank that seems to building larger every time I stop. 

 I rode the Fatty around this lake a month ago. Although I didn't stick right on the shore line, it was 7.5 miles around the way I rode. I think this lake measures over 100 feet deep. 

 I ended up being out for just under 2 hours at near the 25°F with cloud cover and slight moisture in the air every now and then.  I did fight a rather stiff NNW on the return route.  

The conditions on the back roads near here are excellent for riding.  I encourage others to get out and ride these excellent conditions.  Join me.  It's not bad. 

Lets get outdoors and have some FUN!!   

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Easy Choice

 Ride the above indoors ? ?
The below outdoors ? ?
 It was an easy choice for me today, because as of late I have spent way too much time in the downstairs training room.  Although the trainer has did me no harm, I have no love for it.  I guess I need to give it a big hug before I get on, or a peace offering of some kind.  Maybe a book would be good.

 We received about 2 to 3 inches of fresh powder early this morning. The temperature was around the 20°F range and the sun shining bright.  That made for a great day to be out.

 Sometimes I got to looking around and not paying attention to where I was going...and...I suffered for it then.  Keeping the speed up helped and I dropped the tire pressure down a bit.  I started with 7 lbs and I would guess I went down to around 5.  It helped.  But the big thing was paying attention.  I sometimes have problems with that.

We are suppose to be getting some snow in the next couple days.  Until then I will keep riding the trails the way they are, then after the snow, pack them again. 

The deer and other critters use the trails also.  Around here if you get out and drive a back road after a light snow, you get to see how many critters use the roads too.  Fox, Coyotes, Fishers, and Deer to name a very few, will come out to a road and will sometimes walk it for a mile or more.  They like the easy walking too.  Can't blame them.

Lets get outdoors and have some fun!!