Escape to Wisconsin (Season Opener)

This is a past ride.
Apr 13, 2024

5697 Norwich Pkwy, Oak Park Heights, MN 55082

Ride Distance:
John Murphy

UPDATE: We will start and finish at Autumn Hills Park. Need a way to enjoy some nice scenery and quiet roads while getting prepped for the season after a long winter?  This 80-mile (129Km), moderately hilly cruise along both sides of the St. Croix River is a great leg loosener with good roads and scenery.

Starting in Stillwater, the route heads north over some mild rollers and good pavement through Scandia then across the St. Croix River to the first checkpoint in Osceola, Wisconsin at mile 34.  From Osceola the route gets more serious with fairly continuous rollers and dips into small valleys on very quiet country roads as it works south to the next checkpoint.  You will pass numerous small streams, remote farmhouses and several forests.  Roads are generally very good, but there are some bumpy parts.  

The next control is the lunch stop at Bass Lake Cheese Factory at mile 58.  A full bar, sandwich deli and a wide selection of cheeses are available along with an outdoor patio dining area. From there a fun, rolly section ending with a nice downhill on Trout Brook Road will get you into Hudson where there are services, if needed.

Just before turning right to leave Hudson at mile 68.3, going straight on Coulee Rd, crossing WI-35 is on an optional leg (<1 mile) that take you up a fairly steep little hill to the Birkmose Park overlook for a beautiful view of the St. Croix Valley, well worth the effort.  Head back down the hill, turn left at WI-35 and hop on the sidewalk after the light at 2nd St & Buckeye Rd (rejoining the route) to cross the I-94 bridge on the way back to Minnesota and the finish a short 13 miles away.  There are two blind corners on the bike trail getting onto the bridge so be careful.

This route is NOT Western Minnesota flat prairie, but it is also not the major hills encountered in the real driftless area of Wisconsin. There are a few grind it out, shorter hills, but nothing too serious.  This is a really pleasant route and a great way to get the season underway.

Special thanks to Gary Bakke for creating and running this ride for several years.


Electronic Ride Waiver

We have worked with RUSA on an electronic ride waiver that we are now rolling out for all of our rides. This will replace our paper waivers at the start. We will still bring some as a backup. You can click here to go to the MN Randonneurs SmartWaiver page. Please fill out the form there with all the requested information. Once you click submit, an email with a download link of the electronic waiver will be sent to you, to the Minnesota RBA (Norman Ehrentreich), and to the RUSA insurance account. After that, you will be sent back to a landing page on the site that you can close.

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Current Rider List
Jonas Nygard
Rob Welsh
Mike Willbanks
Keith Morical
Trisha Groth
Keith Larson
John Murphy
Charles Stephens
Timothy Donahoe
Reid Nimz
Don McCall
Scott Kies
Michael Mullery
Steve Brackett
Dylan Belverud
Randy Carey
David Marsh
Tom Yuska
Mark Powers
Daniel Stahlmann
Daniel Klausner
Bob Stoltz
Tim Altnether
Billy Whited
Justin Tan
Douglas Carlson
Rob Mosimann
Phil Higley
John Wall
Alexander Riddell
Craig Aamodt
Scott Gregory
Brian Lewis-Jones
Matthew Byrnes
Mark Catlin
Chris Timm
Hall Sanders
James Zuleger
Eric Wetteland
Chris Carlson
Erik Loualiche
Jim Bergman
Sam Carroll