3 speeds, 2 days, 1 more reason your spouse will ask "What now?"
By Jon Sharratt, Shirt-Tail Organizer.
The second Lake Pepin 3-Speed Tour came off without a hitch! Surprisingly little rain but plenty of English mist added up to perfect 3-speed weather. The mechanical failures amounted to Terry “Flat Tire” Osell with his annual puncture and me with a Loose Wingnut but I’ve been called worse.
The Bay City Hill was a challenge and everyone made it to the top; some walking, some riding but the backside was true relief with a 35 mph breeze in your face and a breathtaking view at the wayside at the bottom.
The Smiling Pelican Bake Shop survived the barrage of hungry Tourists and we enjoyed decorating their garden with rusty English Iron and little droplets of Sturmey oil.
Saturday lunch was a treat at the Pickle Factory in Pepin, or some of us back-markers (Ron, Dave, Noel, Melanie and I) found hearty fare at the Star Café in Stockholm.
Steamboat Lanes was a pleasant surprise with a special purchase of Bass Ale for thirsty English Tourists and a very good menu. Some of us stayed for open bowling after dinner and the, uh, clown shoes were certainly interesting especially when they turned on the black light.
The Eagle’s Nest coffee shop provided a hearty breakfast of French (Gasp!) Toast to fuel everyone on through Read’s Landing and into Lake City. Undocumented markers at the Lake City pier were discovered and may appear in the TourBook next year. The Chickadee Cottage Tea room served buckets of hot English tea and scones to the Riders in the Mist. Some of us lingered to chat with a gaggle of Red Hat Society ladies that trundled in and there I was; one of the back-markers again. We (Ron, Dave, Richard, Melanie and I) pushed on to the next rest stop and found another undocumented marker and we were still within the Lake City limits.
The tailwind seemed to strengthen as we moved on to the French Trading Posts on Lake Pepin marker. It was a unanimous decision to press on through the Old Frontenac optional loop and I must say it seemed like a page from the turn of the last century. It was well worth the time as we found Manypenny Avenue and a stone fence that looked to be from 1840s New England. We also found little cottages, picket fences and a quiet tone that was a welcome respite from busy Highway 61.
We hated to leave that treasured spot but even back-markers have to move on. We skipped the alternate route to the top of the bluffs on County 2 and 5 but vowed to try it next year. As we approached Red Wing the sky darkened and we had moderate rain for the final leg of the journey. www.3speedtour.com _____________________________________________________________________________
Date(s): May 22, 2004. Album by Jon Sharratt. Photos by Jon Sharratt. 25 - 48 of 115 Total. 11135 Visits.