|Dr. Giggles and Special K.|
|Dr. Giggles. |
|Dr. Giggles and Special K.|
|Dr. Giggles. |
With not a lot of time we bolted out of Chicagoland and took the quickest way to Iowa. We headed west on I88 and then cut thru Clinton and headed north. As soon as I crossed the Mississippi river my blood pressure went down and I dropped my shoulders. Today's trip was to be a short one since Jamie still had a lot of shool work to prepare.
The weather was absolutely ideal. Brightsun,clear, no haze and a cool wind from the east. We dressed perfectly and also had packed a lunch in our little cooler.
Gravert's orchard sit along Scenic route on Rte 52 that goes from Sabula to Dubuque and then to north Iowa. The terrain is rolling since that part of Iowa is part of the Driftless region. We pulled in to the parking lot and the setup was a bit different due to the virus. It was easy. You buy a bag, fill it ,then leave. No fanfare. Just beautiful countryside and great apples.
We also had pre-arranged to meet good friend Chris P. from Bellevue. Jay and I were doing some Trans Iowa training rides out that way many moons ago and we met Chris on a B Road in the middle of nowhere. We instantly became lifelong friends and everytime I go to that area I try to get in touch with him.
He dropped fixing a woodburning stove and drove up to the orchard to see us. It was great to catch up with him. He got back to his chores and we finished filling our bag. WE then scooted to Bellevue State park to devour our lunch. Brought Stove and made some soup to go with our sandwiches.
Then we hightailed it home and got back to our routine. It was a short escape but we made memories and we got to see Chris. It was a great day.
Thanks for reading,
|Ari and Chris at Gravert's Apple Orchard, Sabula, Iowa|
|Ari and Jamie. Sabula, Iowa |
|Jamie with Bellevue, Iowa and Mississippi River in Background.|
Been trying to at least get out for a weekly picnic with the wife. Travelling far has not been in our time budget but there are a lot of small preserves not far from where we live that we are revisiting again. Merritt is the second time we have been there. It really is a little gem with some surprising terrain. Very quiet, lots of flowers, birds, pine trees and some wonderful mowed trails for some pleasant walking. WE pack a lunch and a small stove and Moka pot for coffee afterwards. We found a spot to hang hammocks and take short naps. We really suggest you take a drive out there. It is worth it.
So the wife and I have devised a plan to escape on Sundays as much as possible. WE have been packing a lunch, bought a small stove for coffee and are taking our folding chairs. Yesterday we targetted Merrit Prairie out in Dekalb. A beautiful little preserve with very few people. Most of the day we were alone except for occasional dog walkers. We had our lunch and coffee and then Slender Fungus member Gumby showed up on his 4 wheeler to visit. It was great to see him. We sat under a tree and chatted for a good while. It sure was great to catch up with him. WE spent the day relaxing, listening to the birds and looking at the many flowers in full bloom. Then we got back on the highway and re-joined the ratrace. Thanks for reading. Today I will check out the Gazateer map and find the next location. Thanks for reading,
In in effort to escape the fishbowl we packed up the car and headed west again. Our target today was to get to Apple River Canyon, a place we have not been to in about 10 years. I have no idea how 10 years transpired but they did. We were pleased to see that not much had changed, save for the masked patrons.
We found a removed location and had our prepacked picnic. Food always tastes good outside and one much get hungry from driving. We relaxed in our folding chairs then checked out the river which was low. We were able to walk in it for a bit and look at the bluff above. The weather was absolutely perfect.
We returned from our river excursion and fired up the little stove for a moka pot of espresso. Total luxury I must admit. Once we were done we drove off and headed west exploring some beautiful roads in the NW IL corner. We came out to rte20 and decided to head over to Galena. It was a bit busy there so we just did a quick walk.
It was a beautiful day and I enjoyed seeing some of the roads I had cycled on a long time ago. I couldn't believe what we had achieved back then and it seemed so long ago that we did that.
I really liked getting out of my fishbowl. It gives me energy and hope. It gives me a drive to find new places and enjoy the beauty out there.
thanks for reading.