Stower Seven Lakes - Gandy Dancer Trail Connector Press Release




Frank Lundeen – CyclovaXC, 715.483.3278

Bill Zager – Friends of Stower Seven Lakes, 715.268.8650

Bike enthusiasts using the Gandy Dancer and Stower Seven Lakes Trails can now safely navigate between the two using a free postcard-sized map. The postcards show a direct, low traffic route connecting two of the best recreational trails in the region.

Town of Osceola, Friends of Stower Seven Lakes and two local businesses – CyclovaXC and gfGoodies - developed and paid for the cards.

“These are incredible bike trails,” said Frank Lundeen of Cyclova. “We want to fill in the blanks for riders between the two.”

Lundeen and many other bikers envision an off-road, non-motorized connection between the Gandy Dancer’s 98 miles and Stower Seven Lakes’ 24 miles.

Free map can be downloaded here and/or are located at:


CyclovaXC
125 North Washington Street.
St. Croix Falls WI.
715.483.3278

Polk County Information Center
710 State Highway 35
St. Croix Falls, WI
715.483.1410

Town of Osceola Office
516 East Avenue North
Dresser, Wisconsin
715.755.3060

UW Wanderoos Bar & Grill
1629 – 70th Ave
Amery, WI
715.268.9217

Countryside Convenience Store
319 Keller Ave S
Amery, WI 54001-1283
            (715) 268-4477

Amery City Hall
           118 Center Street West 
           Amery, Wisconsin 54001
(715) 268-7486

 Ida Mae's Caf√©
121 Keller Avenue North
Amery, WI 54001
715.268.9217



Changing Colors Ride Sept. 21, 2013

Here's an announcement I just received for a bike ride in Amery, enjoy!

Changing Colors Ride
And
FS7LST 5th Anniversary
Sept. 21, 2013
Soo Line Pavilion AmeryWI
Come enjoyed a relaxing afternoon at Soo Line Park and on the Stower Seven Lakes State Trail (S7LST).  Starting at 2pm at Soo Line Park, there will be informational booths and demonstrations by, Bonnie Hagen artist painting, Rob Bursik botanist, Paul Coffee amateur astronomer, Polk County Landand Water exhibit, Friends of S7LST.

Coloring Contest 5 age categories:  5 and under, 6-8, 9-12, 13-15, 16 and older.
Contest pages and rules are available at local businesses or at the Friends booth at Soo Line Park.  All entries must be turned in by 6pm for judging.  Awards are provided by Ellie’s Ice cream and Coffee.  See Attached forms: form 1, form 2, form 3. (Click on the links to download the forms)

Amery Meat Market will have a food stand with their famous brats and Ellie’s Ice Cream and Coffee will have a stand also for your convenience.

Surrey bike rides for your exercise and enjoyment are being sponsored by Sports and More and Friends of S7LST.  6 person surries require 4 persons pedaling.  This way we can provide trail ride opportunities for persons unable to pedal.   
!0 am – Guided Surrey rides on the S7LST, Surries seat 6 with 4 persons pedaling for power.  2 surries available. 
2 -6 pm  Games for all ages begin at Soo Line Park.   Bean bags, softball toss, bring your favorite yard games, board games or card games.
2 -6  pm  Informational booths and vendor demonstrations
3 pm Group bike ride or Hike on S7LST
4-6 pm Music  entertainment
5 pm  Free hot dogs to persons bicycles followed by a group ride
6 pm Coloring Contest Judging
Dusk- Star gazing with a 10 inch Parks telescope.
Food stands available 2 pm – 6 pm

Sign Up For the 2013 Birkie Trail Run and Get $5 Off!

I just got off the phone with the wonderful people up at the Birkie office, and they're excited about having all of our Sasquatch Dashers come up and do the Birkie Trail Running events.  To that end, they've given me a promo code good for $5 off the price of any of the day's events.  But hurry up, the fees increase on Sept. 17th.  Go sign up on the Birkie Trail Run & Trek web page and look for the promo code prompt, then type in the following:

Promo Code: runyourbirkie

Again, the code is good for the marathon, half-marathon, marathon relay, nordic trek, and 5K run/walk.

We have a lot of Cyclova team people who have already committed to doing the Chequamegon 100, so we're going to have a lot of people up in the area.  It's going to be a blast!

We feel the Sasquatch 25k on Sept. 7 is going to be a great prep for the Hayward area events, so make sure you come for that as well!  If it all seems like too much, just dust off your bells and plan to come and cheer for people!  Pay special attention to those wearing CyclovaXC singlets:

SportTracks To Sponsor the Sasquatch Dash!

Hey Folks,

We just got confirmation that SportTracks will be sponsoring the final 25K Sasquatch Dash!  This is a great development for us because it means we will be able to offer prizes to top three male and female finishers of the 2013 series.  The prize is a year long subscription to Sportracks.mobi which is the preferred data analysis software of one of our Sasquatch ring leaders--Ben Mullin (Ben has agreed to come to the shop and give us a clinic on how this software works, so this is a pretty sweet deal).

For more information on SportTracks, check out their press kit here.

Again, the Sasquatch 25K is September 7th and is a FREE event (there is a $10 trail fee for the use of the BRC trails...not applicable to those of you with BRC season passes).  Party afterwards, it's going to be the most awesome party ever probably.

Here's our event flyer (which is pretty much the most awesome event flyer ever--feel free to download it and print it out and frame it so you can hang it up in your living room to impress your guests):

The Rarefied Air of the St. Croix Valley


This past Saturday I had the honor and privilege of riding at Big Rock Creek Farms with this crew plus Mark Fisk, Porter Million, and Jeff Wolf.  Not a single slouch in the group.

We originally rolled out of CyclovaXC to head over the BRCF to preview the Sasquatch Dash 25K course.  Due to various other commitments and timelines some folks met there and some had to leave early.

Not terribly surprising when you get a group like this together, once we hit the trails it was game on.  Unfortunately due to the slight hammerfest and a few navigational errors we lost a few folks.  Sorry about that guys!

The Sasquatch Dash course is going to be brutiful.  Sasquatch would approve.

After close to 2.5 hours I was left riding with just Tommy Krenz and Kevin Rogers.  Talk about elite company.

Dallas and I both had cameras on for the ride.  He was much quicker than I was and put together this awesome short video of the ride.



For those curious, here is a summary of my ride.
SportTracks Ride Summary

Get out there and get some.

Sasquatch 25k Course Preview - By Bike!

Hey folks.  Dallas and I are heading out to Big Rock Creek on Saturday morning to preview the Sasquatch Dash 25k course.  But we are going to do it by bike.  If you want to get a sneak peek of the course or just want to get a good ride in meet us at the mountain bike parking area on the north end at 8:00 am.

Check out the map to the parking area here.

Be sure to bring $10 for the trail fee.

Staying Out of Trouble In Peru

Photo by Oliver Stahmann
Hey Folks!

Well my escape down to Inca Land is coming to a close and I'm psyched to get back to the beautiful St. Croix valley to run the upcoming Sasquatch 25k and come up with more crazy adventures to share with all you Cyclovers.

As you can see from the above photo, I've been keeping a low profile in Peru and going out of my way not to get into trouble.  This was taken on a Photowalk I did with German Photographer Oliver Stahmann (his work was featured in Lima Photo 2013).  This Photowalk took place during a recent demonstration against the government in downtown Lima.  Let me tell you, running from the riot police makes for good interval training.

It's been fun to get a larger perspective over the last few months and assess everything that's been going on lately in our little fitness community.  2013 has already been a banner year for us at Cyclova, and I've really felt a push of excitement as more and more people fall in love with the various sports and activities of our region.  The testimonials people have been sending in have been absolutely wonderful reading and I'd like to thank everyone who has written one and encourage those of you who haven't to start mashing your keyboard (it's just like mashing your pedals).

But as great as 2013 has been, I'm thinking 2014 is gong to rock it even more.  I'm super psyched to see how some of our athletes do in the 2014 Birkie.  Mullin is training like he's got his eye on an Olympic medal, and I'll be curious to see how some of our newer skiiers do now that they have a Birkie under their belt.  Also, it remains to be seen who will be 2014's version of Lone Wolf (if you haven't read that article, you should, it's probably the best thing I've written exclusively for CyclovaXC).  Evans...Velaski (either of them)...Chafloque...it remains to be seen!

If you haven't made plans for September 7th, seriously consider showing up for the final Sasquatch Dash.  It sounds like people are going to be ready to party after the race, and there is no better place to party than Big Rock Creek.  I'd like to offer a round of applause to Dallas and Mullin for all the hard work they've done to make the Sasquatch Dash happen.  We've learned a lot this year and I trust we'll be bringing it back bigger and better next year!  Stay tuned and see you soon!  Here's the awesome poster for the Sasquatch 25k with most of what you need to know:


Point to La Pointe Race Report

When I heard one of our regulars was going to miss the most recent Sasquatch Dash to go swim in Lake Superior I was intrigued.  So as his make-up assignment for missing out on the dash I asked him to do a report on his little dip in the lake.
Thanks Dan!

Adventure weekend on the big lake.

First an introduction:  My name is Dan Campion.  My wife Kim and I live in Danbury WI and own the Anytime Fitness in Siren.  I started swimming competitively in fifth grade, have been a runner for the past 25 years, and a triathlete for the past 11.  This is our story of how we participate in local races and activities and involve the entire family.

When I signed up for the Point to La Pointe open water swim, the water in Lake Superior was slowly warming.  This wouldn’t be so bad, its just a 2.1 mile open water swim from Bayfield to Madeline Island, to benefit the Bayfield Area Recreation Center.  All I needed was to do a little more swimming this summer and get a wetsuit, which the guys from Cyclova did an excellent job setting me up with.

The race organizers were monitoring the water temps regularly in the days prior to the race.  There were reports of water temps in the lower sixties and even high fifties – a full fifteen degrees cooler than the last few years.  Then came the cold water swimming recommendations – booties, gloves, multiple swim caps, and lighted beacon so that it would be easier for the Coast Guard to find your body.  Unless you get a special exemption from the race director, wetsuits are required.  Some sun and light winds brought the water temp up to 62 degrees the morning before the race.  Keep in mind that’s 36 degrees colder than your body temp. 

We rolled in to Washburn Friday night and checked into our “cabin” at the Washburn Motel.   It wasn’t exactly a motel, but a collection of one room cabins along the main drag.  Here’s a photo of my son in front of ours.  They were simple, clean, and got the job done, and it cost less to rent than the $90 race fee.



As an added bonus, we had the use of our very own fridge-stove-sink combo unit.  Yes, we travel in style.

After getting the kids settled in for the night, we set up our lawn chairs in the front yard and enjoyed the beautiful evening and watched the traffic go by.  This was a bit of novelty, since we live back in the woods at the end of a dead end road between Danbury and Webb Lake, and we don’t have much of a front yard and never any traffic.

The morning brought sunshine and much optimism.  After all, I could almost see the finish line from Bayfield.  Kim and the kids wished me good luck, took one last photo (to be used at my funeral, should I not finish the race).

I put off “warming up” until it was too close to the race start to do a warm up, since the water was so cold that I figured I’d turn blue waiting for the start if I got wet first.  It was so cold that I swam Tarzan style for the first 50 yards before I could brave putting my face in the frigid water.  Like any good triathlon start, the start was a mass of legs and arms, none of which are swimming in a straight line.  Right away I cut my toe on something that I think was either someone’s teeth or goggles.  Either way I think he came out on the short end of that deal. 

I’d be lying if I said that it wasn’t the longest, coldest swim of my life.  Around 20 minutes into it, I either warmed up a bit, or got numb enough to not feel the cold anymore. 

Spectators were hauled over to the island on one of four Madeline Island Ferry boats, and then walked a half mile west to the lake home of a very generous family that allows the finish line to be on their beach.  On the race directions sheet, they asked that finishers please vomit in garbage cans at the finish line, and not the hosts’ yard.  Did I mention how generous they were to host 400 swimmers and their families and friends? 

This is a picture of my “middle of the pack” finish in 1 hour 9 minutes.

Here I am after race with my cheering section.

Photo my swim cap and sweatshirt.  The sweatshirt came in handy after the race!


But the adventure wasn’t over yet.  After catching a ferry back to Bayfield, we made our way west across the Bayfield Peninsula and grabbed the last available camping spot lakeside on the dunes at Herbster.  On our way home Sunday, we stopped and hiked the Twin Falls Trail in Port Wing, and two sections of the 4,600 mile North Country National Scenic Trail near Brule and Solon Springs.  

Sasquatch Dash #5 Results and Report

Results

Today was the series penultimate race.  We just have the finale left.

On a beautiful morning in the valley we had a solid turn out of 14 for arguably the best course of the series so far.  A combination of a few segments of the Ice Age Hiking Trail and the Woolly Mountain Bike trails made for an excellent balance of beautiful and challenging terrain.
Check out our winner Alex, bigger than life.  He headed back out to cheer on the rest of the field and didn't make it back in time for the group photo.  You can't even tell he is Photoshopped in can you?

For the first time we had a marked course.  Thanks out to Adam Lushanko and Corey Pratt for joining Dallas and me on Wednesday to pre-run the course and mark it.  I think we still had a couple of navigational errors, but considering the unmarked course opportunities to get off course I think it helped considerably.

The other highlight was two participants in the SheSquatch division.  As you'll see momentarily the series title is wide open at this point.

Without further ado, the results of Sasquatch Dash #5

Alex pulls off yet another win.  This time in commanding fashion.  He remains perfect in the races he has participated in and is set to run away with the series title.


Amy returns for her second race of the series and takes the win and series rookie Eryn comes and runs a very solid first ever trail race.

As mentioned Alex is now poised to run away with the title.  About the only way he doesn't win is if he doesn't show up.  Below I show the top 25 series points leaders through the first five races with what I'm terming virtual points.  As you recall everyone gets to drop their lowest score.  For example in Dallas' case, he missed race 4 and thus scored zero and will be dropping that race.  I however have been to all and therefore I will be dropping my fourth place from the first race.  So if we look at the current total I have a substantial lead on Dallas.  However if we look at the virtual points which is the top 4 results thus far the difference is much much smaller.
On the SheSquatch series the title is up for grabs.  With Amy currently the only repeat participant she currently holds the lead.  However with the finale counting double it is anyone's game still.


Report

And now for my usual first hand perspective race report.  It won't be terribly exciting this time as it really ended up being a solo TT effort predominantly so you just get the thoughts in my head.

Right before the race Dallas told me he really wasn't feeling the eye of the tiger today.  After starting the race and immediately realizing he hadn't locked his vehicle and running back for it he really had the eye of the social butterfly chatting it up with Eddy and Wolf for a good portion of the race and I never saw him.

The pace started off maybe a little slow which was fine by me.  I knew we had plenty of work to do once we hit the Mindy Creek section and then a lot more over on the Woolly and Hospital Esker.  Alex took off the front as we hit Hamilton and I would see very little more of him after that.  Adam and I ran together until we hit Lions Park.  He had a slight misstep on a rock just before the bridge and I passed him.  I don't think I surged or anything but the next thing I knew he was just plain gone.

Alex got caught at the 87 crossing and I got close to him, but then all through the Mindy Creek section he just walked away from me.  As I approached Day Road my heart rate was getting out of hand.  I hit about 5 bpm from my max on the last climb and was about to suffer for it.

I struggled to recover all along the roads out to the Fairgrounds section of the Ice Age.  I could see Alex entering the trail and that was the last I saw of him.  A quick check over my shoulder as I entered the trail showed I had a significant, but not insurmountable gap over I think Adam.

The Regal Park stretch of the Ice Age is one of my favorites and my heart rate was getting a little more controlled and I actually started to feel pretty good again at that point.  I wouldn't say I was able to attack the Woolly section but I was still running pretty strong at that point.  I did catch a quick glimpse of Dallas and Jeff as they were entering the single track as I was coming up the first big climb.

The Hospital Esker section is a beast with probably the steepest climb of the course.  I was feeling decent (for having run 6 miles of race) and knew I had second in the bag but still wanted to finish strong.  I almost got to a speed hike up the steep stretch but kept it chugging.  Once I hit the parking lot I opened it up for what I had left and closed with a very pleasing 6:25 pace for the last four tenths of a mile.

SportTracks Summary

I'm still not ready physically for the awesomeness that will be the finale half marathon at Big Rock Creek, but I am still pumped to be out there.  Tell your friends it is going to be an awesome party.

Hike To Mount Brown Lookout Tower In Glacier

Ben posted the picture of the jacket hanging from the branch at Mount Brown Lookout Tower in Glacier National Park last week.  I thought I would share how it got there.

So this was one of my adventures at Glacier National Park a few weeks back.  I'll start with the adventure selection.  I really wanted to do some trail running while in Glacier.  The thing is they, the park people that is, really frown on running the park.  You see you might come running around the corner and startle a grizzly bear.  Apparently when startled they can be fairly aggressive.  Now you combine that with my worrier/protective mother (Love you too Mom) who I was going to depend on to watch my children while I ran and we have a problem.
image

So after some further digging online and a comment from one of the program managers at work about a hike he did over 20 years ago I found the hike to the Mount Brown Lookout Tower.  Described as one of the toughest hikes in the park that sounded like the ticket instead of a run.

image
Description credit: http://www.hikinginglacier.com

The description is accurate.  It was a long tough slog and what a huge payoff.

I had a gear check (my brother checked my gear while my mom watched) before I left camp.  Good thing too, because I had forgotten to put any food in my bag.  That would have been bad since I was going to be gone over lunch.  My gear list included: 2L hydration pack, 1L water bottle, small first aide kit, reflective blanket, compass, whistle, bear spray, food (trail mix, half a bagel, dried banana chips, protein bar thing), bear bells, and my camera.  I hoped not to need the majority of it other than the food, water, and camera, but a Boy Scout motto is Be Prepared.  This also calmed my mother's nerves a little I think.

After that I shuttled over to McDonald Lodge to start the hike.  I have indicated the starting location and ending location in that one photo.

The first mile I don't think I saw any of the trail because I was fighting with my hydration pack.  This was the second time I was using it and the bite valve wasn't keeping the water in.  So with every step I was getting a little shower.  I spent that first mile trying to make it stop.  Thankfully it did and I was sweaty from the 90 degree heat anyhow so the extra water on me didn't matter and I hadn't lost too much that I really missed it.

After 1.7 miles or so the Mount Brown Lookout trail hangs a left off Gunsight Pass/Sperry Trail.

From here it is a mere 3.7 miles (G measured 3.4 miles, but there was 1 or 2 (27) switchbacks to the top which G doesn't measure too well) to the top.  Actually, I had already climbed 1,000 feet and the trail description said this is where it got tough.  Accurate again.  I had been hiking on a trail super highway.  It is a highly traveled trail thus far with lots of horse traffic.  At this point it turned into single track, and pitched decidedly uphill.

The following picture doesn't do it justice really.  What had been about 12% grade thus far turned into 21% for the next mile.  Yikes.

Continuing the trend of very accurate trail descriptions, it mentioned hiking through a huckleberry patch and to keep an eye out for bears.  I didn't see any of the latter, but there were plenty of the former.  They are a little hard to see in the following picture, but I picked a small bunch on the way back down as a treat for my family who watched my boys while I went adventuring.


Anyway, there was a guy on a horse leading a train of horses coming down from the lookout.  Not sure what he was doing since the lookout isn't manned.

OK, we are getting closer to the top here.  I think horse dude was around 3.65 miles, an hour fifteen, and 6,200 feet elevation into this little adventure.

Just a little while after that the trees started to clear up and I could get glimpses of the views that were going to be waiting at the top.  But first, a shot of one of the switch backs.

OK, so I made it to the top.  But I'm going to drag out the payoff for all of you a little longer and talk for a minute about this guy.

I have no idea what is name is, or exactly how old he is, but he is awesome.  I met him at the lookout tower.  If I had to guess he is easily 70+.  In our brief chat I learned he is from Seattle, this is his sixth time in the park, and his third time to this lookout tower.  His last time in the park in 2010 he stayed for 16 days and hiked over 200 miles.  Seriously, I want this kind of health when I get to be his age.  Dang impressive.

OK, how about the payoff for the hike?

Yup, that splotch there by the lake is McDonald Lodge, where I started.

Not enough?  How about a selfie from the top?  I don't generally do selfies, but I needed proof I was there and I wanted to model the sweet CyclovaXC top.

Really, still not what you were looking for?  Fine.  But since I think I'll blow up the blogger back end for this blog I'll link you to flickr.  Be sure to find the place to click to look at the larger images and pan around.  Absolutely incredible.  I want to go back now.



I can't say enough about how absolutely amazing this hike was.  The views were incredible and absolutely worth the effort.  Three days later and my legs are just barely starting to feel better after the ascent and descent.  They felt OK after the hike and I iced them in Lake McDonald.  Even so they were absolutely destroyed the next two days.  If you said I could do the hike again though I would do it without hesitation.  The thing is, there are quite a few other amazing hikes in Glacier so next time I'll be looking for something else.

OK, a little data time.

The ascent took 1:45:01, the descent took 1:28:33.  Turns out you (well I) really can't hike downhill that much faster than you can uphill when it is that steep.

Here is a glamour shot of G (yes my favorite training partner has a name) at the top.  His data fields are lap time, elevation, lap pace, and lap heart rate.  Note that my easy runs have a heart rate around 145.  The hike up was no joke so while I didn't actually run, I counted this as run training.

Sasquatch Hunters



The hunters were out tonight marking the trail.  The course is going to be incredible and it is worth the price of admission (free ya know) on Saturday.  All the corners starting at Lions Park have been marked with flourescent green flagging tape either on lath stakes or on trees.  Once you have entered Lions park (if you can't navigate from the Overlook to Lions park you probably shouldn't start) if you come to a corner you should see flagging to direct you on the right path.


Preview Sasquatch #5 Tonight



Come on out to St. Croix Falls this evening (8/7/2013) and preview (and help mark) the course for this Saturday's race.  We will be departing from the St. Croix Falls Overlook around 6:30pm.

Course Map

Sasquatch Dash Series Information

Dash #5 Facebook Event

This one is going to be great with some of the best single track around.  Come get a taste tonight and get ready to 'Squatch on Saturday morning.

Ultra Runner to Cross WI and MI


Brian contacted me recently about his goal of crossing all 50 states on foot, and I thought I'd share his press release with you. He should be hanging around St. Croix Falls a bit on August 16th, so keep an eye out for him!


St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin (August 16, 2013): Brian Stark, 41, environmental educator and ultra runner from Tucson, Arizona will attempt to run 600 miles across Wisconsin and Michigan following the Ice AgeTrail and North Country Trail from St. Croix Falls on the west to the Michigan-Ohio border on the east. Stark will begin his run on August 16, 2013 at 8 am.

Running alone, Stark will be following the Ice Age National ScenicTrail, a 1,000 mile long trail following the outline of the last ice age 10,000 years ago. 

Once he reaches the western shore of Lake Michigan at Manitowok, he will board a ferry for passage to the eastern shore at Ludington, Michigan. He will then continue running by joining the North Country Trail south across Michigan to the Ohio border. 

Stark will use a combination of hotels and camping each night in remote backcountry locations. He expects to finish near Hillsboro, Michigan on September 1. 

Stark is attempting to be the first person in modern times to cross all 50 states on foot. Wisconsin and Michigan will be his 30th and 31st states crossed. In 2012 he attempted to run across Wyoming following the Oregon Trail but was blocked by private fences forcing him to run the Auto Route of the trail. In 2011, he set the record for the fastest crossing of Nevada on trails in 11 days, 7 hours, and 28 minutes. In 1998, he ran 4,800 miles from Delaware to California on a network of trails called the American Discovery Trail. In 2004, he published a book on his coast-to-coast run, titled, Getting to the Point. In a dozen pairs of shoes (Authorhouse, 2006). 

Information about the run can be found at Stark’s website: www.statesrunner.com

For more information about the attempt, contact Brian Stark at BrianRStark@Hotmail.com or call (520) 576-8666.

The Wool Jerseys are In

Hey Folks!

The last time we did a run of CyclovaXC wool jerseys they were so popular they pretty much all sold out within a couple days. Bearing that in mind, we did a re-order with a couple new and unique styles (although I don't think we went with brown this time around).

They're currently on display at the shop, come on by and check them out. It might seem a little early in the midst of the warm summer, but these things are SWEET when the fall and winter weather starts to hit. I kept my two jerseys on rotation throughout the winter and didn't wear anything else!  Come check 'em out!