Monday, November 23, 2015

Part 2 - Connecting Route from the IATA Headquarters in Cross Plains to the Valley View Segment of the Ice Age Trail

Greeted by snow frosted trees and fields, I returned to finish the connecting route between the Cross Plains and Valley View Segments of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail.  This stretch of road offers views of fields, farms, and lovely homes on streets with stone gates announcing stately neighborhoods - Pheasant Point, Grand View, Noll Valley and the like. A week's time made quite a difference as last week's unseasonably warm and sunny start gives way to this week's icy finish.

The contrast of red barns and green pines with the snow provided a feeling of walking through a Christmas card. The weather felt Christmas-like as well. It's amazing how quickly we forget the things we know to do in the cold. I did remember to wear gaiters with my waterproof hiking sneakers to beat the snow, but totally forgot about wearing my CamelBak inside of my jacket. My water froze in a matter of minutes. To have water, I had to take my jacket off to put the CamelBak inside my jacket to give my water a chance to melt back to drinkable. Then, of course, I brought a jacket too tight to zip with the CamelBak on the inside. Brrrrr, thank goodness for hilly glacial terrain to warm us as we walk uphill.

Frost condensed from my breath coats my hair on a cold day.

The expansive homes along this portion of the connecting route were beautiful to see laced with snow and ice. Passing through these neighborhoods I encountered dogs more trotting than walking with booties on their feet. I noticed Honda Civics and Toyota Corollas providing me a wide berth, much wider than necessary. But I did jump off the shoulder to accommodate a Lincoln Navigator whose operator appeared to take the speed limit and the boundaries suggested by the paved portion of the road as suggestions that apply to others only.

Pheasant Point.
Lovely street name, Ice Age Lane.
Noll Valley.

A 4 car garage, every husband's dream.

When I got to Valley View, I saw the trail blazes leading off into the trees, marking the Ice Age Trail covered by pristine, untrodden snow, and I longed to keep going. But the cold turned me around to walk back to my car. I keep saying I need to find a shuttle so I can cover more distance on each walk, but I really do enjoy the peace and freedom of walking on my own schedule with my own thoughts working themselves out along the way.

Timber Lane.

Shovelor Sink.

Today's map

Trail Conditions - A few icy patches and blind spots on narrow, windy, hilly stretches of road, mostly good. Sunny and 15°F (-9.4°C).

Distance Covered Today - 8.0 miles (12.9 km).

Difficulty - Easy with a few moderate hills.

Location - Parked at the state park signs at the Cross Plains Interpretive Site on Old Sauk Pass Road.

Concerns - I did see a couple of people hunting from inside their vehicles just off the road. I understand it's cold outside, but this really isn't safe with so many cars (and the occasional walker) passing by.

Highlights - Views of large homes, the surrounding hills, and farmsteads frosted with snow. Deer running through the snow - out of the line of sight of hunters.

Total Official Ice Age Trail Miles Completed to Date - Total official Ice Age Trail distance completed 103 miles (165 km). Trail 48 miles (77 km), connecting route 55 miles (88 km).

Total Additional Backtracking Miles Completed - 89  miles (142 km). 

No comments:

Post a Comment