Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Connecting Route from County Road X to Levee Road

A break in the frigid weather provided the perfect February day to complete the connecting route between the Sauk Point and Portage Segments of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Starting mid-route from the parking area at the Lower Narrows historical marker on Wisconsin State Highway 33, I headed south to County Road X and back. Eagles and hawks soared overhead.

Although the views from Highway 33 are beautiful, but I did not enjoy the heavy traffic, particularly the tractor-trailers whizzing by. Also, someone came to a screeching halt to ask if I'd like a ride. Just trying to be nice, I suppose. But no thanks. I give this highway two thumbs down as a walking spot.

Along State Highway 33.

The Baraboo River.

Next I headed north on County Road U, jogged west on Hein Road, then headed north on Schepp Road to reach Levee Road before turning back. After busy State Highway 33, the peaceful country roads provided much relief. On the trek north a snow storm with piercing winds whipped up, but led to no accumulation. The backtrack was sunny and warmer. Today's hike out and back covered 11.2 miles (18 km).

On State Road U, snowing one minute...

On State Road U, sunny the next minute.

Along State Road U.

Along State Road U.

Prom invitation on Schepp Road.

Beautiful views of farmsteads on County Road U.

Farmland along State Road U.

Map of hike from County Road X to Levee Road in Sauk County.

Trail Conditions - Clear country roads with some hard-packed ice on Schepp Road.  Piercing winds and a snowstorm sandwiched between periods of sun. Temperature 16°F (-8.9°C).

Distance Covered Today - 11.2 miles (18 km).

Difficulty - Easy.

Location - Connecting route from County Road X to Levee Road in Sauk County  (a portion of the connecting route between the Sauk Point and Portage Segments). Parked at the historical marker on State Highway 33.

Highlights - Watching eagles and hawks on State Highway 33, views of farmsteads, the surrounding hills, and an interesting prom invitation.

Total Official Ice Age Trail Miles Completed to Date - Total official Ice Age Trail distance completed 49.15 miles (79 km). Trail 25.7 miles (41.4 km), connecting route 23.5 miles (37.6 km).

Total Additional Backtracking Miles Completed - 48.05  miles (76.9 km).

Concerns - State Highway 33 is not pleasant for walking due to the high volume of high speed traffic.

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