Vernon County Nirvana

Right on Chris! You can only survive Manitoba by integrating some gravel into your repertoire of routes and by finding other places to ride further afield. Amazingly, only 10.5 hours of driving and $64.00 in diesel fuel and you can be in what is a road riding mecca. Patrick, Chantelle, Remy, Neil, Yvonne and I explored the  “Driftless” region of Vernon County Wisconsin.  A spiders web of quiet smooth paved roads offers an infinite number of options, and makes it comparable to just about anything in Europe. Most of the roads have less traffic than you would see between Richer and La Bro. Grades can be as steep as 18% and some of the climbs are several kilometers in length. We were often approaching speeds near 80 km./hr.  Our base for the tour was the Hickory Hill Motel in Viroqua.  The hotel isn’t luxury, but it is inexpensive (54$ per night), has an outdoor pool and wi-fi, and is clean.  Just be prepared to wait 10 minutes for the water to heat up enough to have what might be considered a hot shower.  There are plenty of restaurants options in Viroqua and a good bike shop for service.  The Amish add an interesting cultural dimension to the area.  The only problem with coming back home is finding the motivation to ride on flat straight roads again.vernon

5 thoughts on “Vernon County Nirvana

  1. I’m glad you came Neil. I know how you must have felt on day 2. I made a 135km ride along the Rideau today. There isn’t much for hills but the first half was into a fairly strong wind so I am guessing that and a head cold I caught must have done me in. I was definitely on the verge of bonk by the time I got home. This part of Ontario has some nice scenery but the riding can’t hold a candle to Wisconsin. It will take a little while to adjust back to the flats.

    As for the rack, you owe me a coffee to compensate for the hour it took me to figure out how to put it back to normal.

    Go Leah Kirchmann. Nice to see that a rider out of MB can have that sort of result.


  2. It was all Patrick’s idea! I think the flu-like feeling I had those days must have been a virus, because even after I got home it was still hanging on. Feeling better now though. Somehow riding BHP doesn’t quite cut it! Just looking at the riding in the Yorkshire Dales. Wow!

  3. Sounds like a blast, thanks for sharing this post. Approx 12 years ago I went to Madison, WI for some training. That was before I was road biking. But even then I thought to myself that it would be a great area to ride in. Great highways with endless rolling hills. I’ll never forget the day we went golfing though. It was so hot, I nearly blacked out and we quit after 9 holes. Fortunately, that was followed by a great steak and brew = full recovery 🙂 .

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