The Chainlink

With leaves changing and temps getting cooler, what rides do you love? All types of rides included... supported or unsupported, bike camping, cross racing, alley cats, tweed rides, etc. 

On my ride around the lake (Lake Geneva, Wisconsin) yesterday. 

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Along Chicago's Lakefront Trails.

Wow, beautiful shot. That's one of my favorite places for an afterwork ride. 

The Perimeter Ride!

My low to no traffic tour of St Anne to Kentland


There are so many great Fall rides. I love riding roads near the General Store in LaGrange, WI near the Kettle Morraine with the only problem being it will be hunting season and you best wear orange riding north of the Cheddar Curtain. Yasmeen will soon find this out.  Otherwise, how about the ride you  take tomorrow?  I am leading a moderately paced ride from the Panera in Wilmette to the Panera in Knollwood near Lake Bluff for EBC at 8 am tomorrow.  A lot of it is on trails which will provide nice protection from the projected headwinds. Come along.

Thanks David! I just did the route that goes around Lake Geneva. The second half had lots of long climbs. I always see people on road bikes at the General Store/Backyard Bikes when I am mountain biking at Kettle. I think it's probably time I check it out. Thanks for the heads-up about hunting season. I have a bright pink vest to wear, hopefully that will work too?

Let me know if you are every up this way and want to do an easy ride with me. :-)

As the morning skies darken and the leaves fall, things all get a little spooky...

... Sunday morning.  Wake at 3:45am and head out on the desolate streets for a solo ride.  Moon hanging low in the western sky.  Broken cloud cover.  It's deathly quiet as the insects of summer have found warmer homes. You have the darkened streets to yourself.

Make your way north up to the Skokie Lagoons.  The moon reflects across the water.  You see glowing eyes staring back at you from the trees--deer watching you with caution.  Don't get too distracted though--you might hit a skunk.  Keep on riding...

.. you're at the edge of the Botanic garden.  4:45am.  Pitch black. Head across Rt. 41 and find your way to the Skokie Valley Trail.   Blast your way north under the erie silhouette of high-tension wires and dying foliage. Not a soul in sight.  Not a sound.  Oh. But the glowing eyes.  Orange eyes at shoulder height--deer.  Bright unwavering eyes near the ground--a housecat on the hunt.  Beady blue eyes in black--a skunk. A group of 14 eyes all together--raccoons.  Steely blue eyes watching you off in the distance--a coyote.   A piercingly bright light approaching fast--a freight train roars past.

The path is so straight and desolate your mind starts to play tricks on you.  What were those signs about attacking blackbirds about?  Isn't that Michael Jordan's mansion just across the tracks over there? A makeshift memorial to a cyclist taped to a concrete pillar as you pass Old Elm.   Would anyone find me back here? The moon has disappeared off the horizon and you're plunged into utter blackness.   A low-hanging fog envelopes you as you near Lake Bluff.    The bright lights of a electrical substation and water treatment plant ahead as your emerge from the void.

Make your way east to the McClory trail and head north.  Racing north under the canopy of trees, watching for those ever present eyes.  A bright glow ahead grows larger and larger as you emerge from the trees onto the Great Lakes Naval base.  Do you continue north into Waukegan or turn around?  You hear Reveille echo across the base as you ride.  Maybe you should head back.

Make your way south along the lakefront through Lake Bluff, Lake Forest, Fort Sheridan, and Highland Park. Low clouds have produced a blood-red ribbon of pre-dawn light hanging low across the lake.  Mile 36, you finally see your first jogger in the dark.   Mile 40, you encounter another cyclist.  Mile 45, you pass the peloton of some group ride heading north--little do they know about your adventure.  Wilmette. Evanston.  You're back to familiar territory and you're still alive.

This is one of my favorite fall rides...


Wow. You've given me another reason to love that ride (it's one of my favorites). 

Copper Country Color Tour in the Upper Peninsula ( or The route to do is the 200 km, and one has to go up Brockway Mountain. It's a long drive from Chicago, but it's a wonderful ride. Not a lot of people, you can for sure have much better pasties around there, but the route along Lake Superior is wonderful, and Brockway Mountain is breath-taking. I've done it only once, and I am planning to get back.


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