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Yesterday was a whirlwind.  I decided, kind of last minute, to drive up to Viroqua, Wisconsin to ride for a few days with Kent And Katie Eriksen.  It was Kent’s birthday and the invitation was too nice to pass up. 

So, Trudi was flying back from the Tour of California and the plan was to pick her up at the Kansas City airport and do the 600 mile drive.  

The problem was her flight was late, so we didn’t get moving until 6.  That means we didn’t get here until close to 2 am.  

This area has to be unbelievable to ride. I used to go up to La Crosse, when I was a junior, and train and race. A team mate, Mark Frise lived there, and his father was very involved in junior development back then. So, Greg LeMond started going there to hang with Mark and Greg Demgen and met his wife, Kathy, whose dad was a allergy doctor I went to see a few years later. Anyway, the riding was crazy good. 

Big rolling climbs and zillions of roads.  I think this will be the same after driving here last night.  

I’m thinking of heading back down to Iowa for the Memorial Day races. There is a longish road race on Friday, then Snake Alley on Saturday, Muscatine on Sunday, then Davenport Monday. This is the one year anniversary of breaking my hip.  I did it in Davenport last year, in the rain.  

That’s the problem, or at least one of the problems. But It is supposed to rain in there most of the days.  I’m not sure I’m ready for that.  We’ll see. 

Okay, these guys are getting dressed, so I better go.   


6 thoughts on “Viroqua

  1. old and slow

    My favorite riding area in the midwest bar none. Perhaps even in all the 48 states and I’ve seen and ridden in all the best parts of TX, California, Colorado and New England too. The terrain and density of paved secondary roads in the driftless is right up there with the very best parts of France and Spain. (Until you cross the river and head down into Iowa anyway…)

    I specifically look at real estate in Viroqua a few times a month. Definitely on the short list if I am ever able to do the warm weather site/cold weather site retirement model. Please follow up with one of your typical gastronomic reports if going out to dinner there is in the cards, Steve?

  2. Pepsi Frank

    The riding around Madison was amazing, always a Heiden or Docter to ride with.

  3. old and slow

    None of my business but is this an AirBNB/VRBO type arrangement in the top picture? Never looked into that option, I’m more of a $50-$60 hotel room with basic cable kinda guy, I guess?

    I’ve thought of buying a duplex right in town. Or else just rental property with a poorly insulated mother in law apartment. The only thing at all wrong with this area is when it gets muggy, and that was but one July out of the three that I have been through there since 2010. Next time there for me will be in the first half of September I hope? Gotta hand it to Kent, he sure didn’t pick this location out of a hat, did he?

    From Viroqua even if you somehow managed to get bored with the local riding you still have the wonderful area between Prairie Du Chien and Dubuque within easy driving distance to the south (including the Cassville Ferry river crossing option and a great brewery in Pososi,) and I’m pretty sure that there’s plenty of good roads around Winona, MN off to the northwest too. Nobody talks about Elroy to Sparta much these days but you have that close by and also other rail trails between there and the Dells too.

    The problem with the Iowa side of the river and all the back roads being very thick GRAVEL as opposed to dirt is that’s where the good shade was in the hot late afternoons. In Wisconsin just about every valley coming east from the Mississippi has a perfect two lane road climbing up out of it that connects to something just as good at the ridge top. I’m pretty sure that just Crawford County would keep me entertained for 3-5 weeks of riding.

  4. Devin

    Damn had I known you were in the area I would have pulled out the Road bike and joined in,,, been looking for a good reason to get off the mountain bike and go for a road ride… Keep the Wheels Moving…


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