Western IA Gravel Road Run

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by tbirdsp, May 28, 2002.

  1. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    Not much of an adventure, but a pretty good time. Yesterday Ammo and I and our buddy Bruce decided to try to find some decent dual sport roads that aren't 4 states away. We ran south along the Loess Hills and basically took any dirt road that looked interesting, especially the "Level B minimum maintenance road, travel at your own risk" ones. The rain the night before kept the dust down on the regular roads, but the min maint ones were a sea of mud. Ended up doing 150 miles, 95% dirt/gravel. Had lunch at the Blue Moon Cafe in Hamburg, IA. Other pic below is an overlook at Waubonsie State Park off of Hwy 2 east of Nebraska City.

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  2. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    Waubonsie State Park overlook

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  3. RockyRaccoon

    RockyRaccoon Found:Gideon's Bible Supporter

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    Hey, adventure is where you make it happen out in the heartland. Sounds like you had a nice trip.

    My one and only camping trip when living in Iowa nearly 20 years ago was to a pretty little state park in the northeast corner. In this particular place the Mississippi of old had cut a series of big gullies into the land, so that once down in them, one had the illusion of being surrounded by mountains...well, hills anyway. It was crisp autumn weather and there were a lot of fall colors, so it kind of reminded me of New England or a trip to the mountains. Gawd that was a pleasant little trip for a piss-poor, homesick mountain boy, his young wife and their new baby boy! As I recall there's one particularly scenic little town up there called Elk City or Elkador or something like that. Might even have been a few curves in the road.
    :rofl

    27 years ago a buddy and I were driving through Nebraska and stopped for the night in the Sand Hills or Pine Hills (geez, am I getting old or what?) up in the sparsely populated northwestern part of the state. We laid our sleeping bags out on the ground in a deserted campground on a little hill on a moonless night, and I never saw so many stars so vividly in my life. From horizon to horizon, it was absolutely stunning.

    So yeah, you can have adventures in Iowa and Nebraska. Thanks for bringing back some great memories ... and go for it!
    :thumb
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  4. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    Thanks Kurt. The Loess Hills area in western IA actually has some pretty good riding. "Loess" is a term for a certain kind of windblown silt formation. Supposedly the only place it exists in in Iowa and China. More info here:
    http://goldenhillsrcd.org/byway/
    http://www.nfinity.com/~exile/loesspg.htm
    Kind of a cool pic gallery here:
    http://www.reflectiveimages.com/LoessHillsGallery.htm

    I've scouted out a pretty good ~250 mile curvy pavement loop in this area, but this was the first time we explored the gravel roads.
    Need to do the northern part next time, it's generally more interesting than the southern part.

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  5. RockyRaccoon

    RockyRaccoon Found:Gideon's Bible Supporter

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    Interesting. Love geology and geograpy. :thumb Ain't it great how having a GS helps expand our horizons by giving us an excuse to go see interesting places?
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