Day 2 (Monday) – Soldiers Grove to Hawkins area, WI?
We woke up around 7am, and realized we had made a terrible mistake. Our first night on the trip, was us living lives of luxury. We had beds, fridge with food, running water, and yes, a shower. Caleb was found sleeping in his car outside. I think he slept for an hour after whatever wedding he was at, and drove his way out. He arrived bearing gifts of breakfast sausage, and other tasty foods.
A quick look outside showed that we’d be riding in some beautiful weather. Sun was out, and found us getting out on the road quite late around 9am. The portion of the TWAT from Soldiers Grove area on up to Black River Falls area is mostly road, and maybe some minor backroad stuff. OK, I think it also takes you through Wildcat mountain area (though we may have bypassed this?). Yes, now looking back I recall what happened. We wound our way through many random fields and Amish areas. We did some math, and felt if we wanted to get to the sandier and more off-roady areas, we’d create some bypasses of our own and get up to Black River Falls area. At which point, we made our first stop along the way
A side road on a sandy section of the TWAT –
I think at this point I finished the last of the peanut butter bars my wife made me. They were supposed to last the trip, but hey……I can’t fight the hunger feeling. As I’ve mentioned before, I am not the best at taking pictures. The next I have along the way are some additional Rustic Road pics. This was just on the outskirts of the BRF area.
We zipped along, at which point realizing that there were some open gravel areas. I don’t mind going as fast as possible on these roads, but Lord help me if that KTM 950 doesn’t kick up some killer dust. Jameson was rocking some Terraflex rear tire that was like a 3 mile long smoke screen of dust. The 690 wasn’t as bad, but sweet word. So as we scooted along, my eye spied another Rustic Road sign. I let Jameson and Caleb zip away as I snagged a quick picture.
You’ll notice in the above pic how my luggage locations changed. This changed probably each day as I found a new configuration to put things. Yes, I managed to burn some straps, and lose an item or two. Such is life.
Along we went, with us needing to take a quick break. Again, I don’t remember where, or exactly when. I do remember though that Caleb had found that his rotopax gas tank he had on his bikes rear rack had broken the rear rack. We found a stellar spot along the way to stop and fix things. We had a lake, a parking lot, shade, pit toilets. What more could you ask for?
An hour and a half later, my gatorade had decided to work its way through me, requiring a quick pit stop. I waved Jameson & caleb past and hung tight for a bit to let some of their dust settle. We were mildly confused on the Wisconsin ATV Trail markings. When you see a motorcycle, with a line through it, you tend to think….motorcycles shouldn’t be there. That’s not always the case as we’d later learn. Street legal motorcycles are acceptable. This relieved me a bit, as I don’t like riding where I don’t belong, or am not allowed. We have too few of trail systems as it is, I don’t want to be the one to screw that up. :deal
Jameson scratches away some dust:
Caleb ready to keep groovin and a moovin:
After the more off-roady aspect of the area North of Black River Falls, things basically turn into farm lands. Wide. Open. Farm. We scooted pretty quickly at this point, with each of us keeping decent distance to keep the dust as tolerable as possible. Around 6pm, we figured we better figure out what we were going to do for camp. We stopped at a gas station I really wish I knew where (mapping shows Hawkins, WI) to get some quick food stuffs. At which point I sent my wife a stellar high fashion photo of myself.
We figured at this point, we’d continue to follow the trail, and see where we ended up. Around 630, Jameson figured we better really buckle down on location.
We found ourselves on an ATV Trail. I was in front (350’s are the fastest of course), with Jameson following Caleb. Caleb ended up washing out his front tire, so we decided we really must buckle down. and find camp. After a few minor detours, we found an appropriate locale for sleeping.
We realized in our spot we had no cell signal. I sent my Check-In\OK signal on my SPOT, but figured I’d walk to the entrance of our camp spot to see if I could get any reception. I hopped on my bike without my gear\helmet\etc. Go figure, I get a danged mosquito in my eye.
Yah…that one on your right. The one that’s making your eyes water right now :lol3
We relaxed through the evening. Cooked some foods, and around 9 or 10, Jameson decided he needed a cup of coffee. I odn’t understand how he did it, but he did. Caleb and I retired to our separate chambers. His a hammock nestled between a couple trees. Mine, my trusty Kelty tent. Not 2 minutes after getting into my tent, Caleb begins snoring like a bear. Thankfully, I was tired and zonked out quickly.
End of day, I think we did 275-300ish miles? I sadly don’t remember. It was a great day of riding, and I was ready for what the next day would bring us.
Day 2 Map
Day 3 (Tuesday) to follow.