First bike ride of the year to work. I should not have waited so long, but between being lazy, benched, and bad weather today was the first time. The morning was chilly with the Madison airport temperature (the one reported) reading 57. I put on a sweat shirt and hat, but removed them half way into the ride. On the ride in I tried my new path to avoid biking along Broadway Street in Monona. But I forgot which direction to turn on Monona Drive and ended up taking a slightly longer route than I wanted. Still, the ride was 15.2 miles which is just a mile more than my normal ride. However, I did avoid Broadway, and that was nice.
For the return trip I wanted to take the north side of the lakes. This is a longer trip, but a different view. The one part of the trip I don't like it County Road M. There is no getting around it. If you want to bike around the north side of Lake Mendota, you have to ride County M for at least 1.5 miles. Then you have the option of County K, Oncken Road, or staying on M until well into Middleton. Normally I do Oncken Road. There is a large hill in the middle, but a nice coast after you get over it, and this route is a little shorter. County K is a little longer, and a little busier, but the hills are more gentle. Both Oncken and K come to County Road Q. Not particularly busy it leads to the North Lake subdivision—a labyrinth that if navigated correctly leads to the Pheasant Branch Creek Conservancy.
Winds today were unusual coming form the north east. Our winds are typically out of the west. This made the latter part of my trip rather pleasant as I had a good tailwind.