First Day Cycling – Idyllic

We could not have asked for a better day to start our Trans-Superior Cycling Tour! Well, okay, I readily admit that it was a might chilly when we set off. A bank temperature reading confirmed that it was only 43 degrees. And I shivered and stiffened up during those initial miles. But the sun rose quickly and warmed our bodies and my attitude.

Traveling along highway 13 to Bayfield was a cyclist’s dream. The road surface was excellent, there was a good shoulder, and traffic was light. Add to that a perfectly sunny day, the wind mostly at our backs, and pastoral farmland scenery interspersed with forest and views of Lake Superior and you have a ride that can’t be beat. I might not have chosen to have the hilliest portion of the route in the last 20 miles, but even that could not detract from the experience. Probably the biggest drawback to the day was knowing that we could never replicate its perfection.

True to the nature of this tour, we made several stops along the way. An historical site with a Finnish homestead and windmill caught our attention, and proved to be beautifully cared for and well preserved. The first wayside rest with a view of Lake Superior demanded a visit. We couldn’t pass up the “Best Food on the Circle Tour” so we paused at Ruxy’s Cottage Cafe in Port Wing for a fresh cinnamon roll. The harbor in Cornocopia was a scenic diversion, with picturesque boats and little shops. And everything was enhanced by the beautiful sunny weather. Probably our most interesting stop came about completely by accident. I happened to spot the Lake Superior Binational Forum Symbol – the same one that adorns our cycling shirts – on the door or a roadside building. Returning to investigate, Bruce Lindgren stepped outside, and we soon learned that he is a member and co-chair of the Forum! He was pleased to learn of our association with the Forum and a lively conversation ensued, fueled by our mutual care for Lake Superior.

Arriving at our destination, the descent into Bayfield was a picturesque (and welcome) sight. Sailboats and other vessels dotted the deep blue waters of Lake Superior as the quaint buildings of this pretty town came into view. At the first available cafe, we deserted our bikes and emerged with lake berry breeze smoothies and consumed them in the warmth of the sunshine. Oh, were they good.

I would have to say that this was a most successful start to our trip. We’ve enjoyed a delicious and ample dinner and are now resting in our motel with a lovely view of the lake and the setting sun. We’re tired, but happily so. And tomorrow’s another day on the Tour.

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