The second longest single session bike ride I've ever done today at 43.74 miles. This is just shy of my record of 43.84 miles I did back in July of 2006
. That ride was actually quite uncomfortable, but this ride was much better.
The first leg of my trip took me to Cross Plains using Airport Road. I had biked Airport Road as far as Rocky Dells Road in the past and decided I would use this route to get to Cross Plains rather than the slightly longer route that uses Schneider Road and County P. The traffic along Airport Road is heavier than Schneider Road, but not as bad as some road I bike along. Once in Cross Plains I used County Road KP to work north-west to Black Earth. This town had been on my list for a long time. Unfortunately all the restaurants in the downtown area are closed and the buildings for sale. I knew this, but it would have made a nice rest stop as this is about the 15 mile mark.
From Black Earth my path became more challenging. I followed Turkey Road, working my way north-east. This is a set of twisting roads up and down hills. I found a spot more challenging than Hell Hill. A section of Turkey Road just before Lily Vallery Road and Blackberry Road has a 270 foot hill climb with an average 9.4% grade and a maximum of 21.5%. Once you get to the top, you go right back down again. Then a second hill, this one 134 feet at up to 10.3%. After 15 miles already, the climbs were just more road and I took my time, listened to my book, and peddled along. Turkey Road turns into Spring Valley Road, then Schuman Road, and then connects with County K. This goes north and highway 19, which is right next to Indian Lake County Park.
Before I left for my ride, I talked to Steve and asked if he wanted to meet me at Indian Lake to do a little hiking. There is an old German Chapel on top the hill, and I thought Steve would appreciate some German heritage. So we hiked up to see it. After the hike and lunch it was time to get back on the road. I was feeling pretty good and decided I would extend the trip to again go into Waunakee before turning south and heading home.
I clocked each leg of the trip independently. The first 25.5 miles (an hour and 55 minutes) I held an average of 144 BPM (78.7%) with a peak of 167 BPM (91.2%). This part of the trip had most of the hill climbs. Steve is not as accustom to hiking as I am, so the hike I averaged 106 BPM (57.9%) which is not much more than my standing heart rate. The leg going to Waunakee, 9.1 miles, I actually held a higher average at 149 BPM (81.4%) with a peak of 162 BPM (88.5%). At this point I had a tailwind. While that should have increased my speed (which it did) it should have done nothing for my overall heart rate. From Waunakee back to Elmwood Park (8.39 miles) I averaged 142 BPM (77.6%) with a peak of 160 BPM (87.3%). I was clearly getting tired by this point. The trip clocked in at 4 hours, and 45 minutes.