Destination: Sleepy Dog Coffee, Eagle River
Distance: 5.4 miles
I debated doing a longer ride today as it was sunny, if not a bit chilly (30s). But, my wife and I had plans for the afternoon, and more importantly, I wanted to include on my ride the recently re-constructed Old Eagle River Rd. So a short trip down to Sleepy Dog was in order.
This short section of road is on the most direct route from my house to the Eagle River Business district. I have avoided it this summer as it has been under construction and torn up. I don’t know what utilities lay under it that had to be redone, but it sure seemed like a major deal for such a short little section of secondary road. But, and here’s the big deal, it now includes what I think is Eagle River’s first signed and marked Bike lanes!
The bike lane is not very wide, but is adequate in my opinion given the traffic and 25 mph speed limit. Formerly, there was no shoulder at all, and traffic would sometimes back up behind me as I rode along. So this is a welcome improvement!
After enjoying the bike lane I took to the sidewalks/paths and parking lots along the busy Old Glen Highway to reach a cash machine and then back to Sleepy Dog. Sleepy Dog was the original (I think) coffee shop in Eagle River but now plays second fiddle, well third fiddle I guess, to the Corporate Starbucks a hundred feet to the north and the ever popular Jitters just a block south. But they still serve great coffee and have a nice quiet atmosphere. I enjoyed my usual dopio but didn’t stay too long.
I headed back home they way I came to ride the bike lane again. The bike lane markings are placed in milled grooves in the pavement, so that the winter plowing doesn’t wear them out so quickly.
Quick ride up the hill and I was home. It only took an hour or so. Why does it take the Coffeeneuring Challenge to get me out like this? I’ll do better, I promise. Oh, I enjoyed riding my Surly LHT today. I haven’t been riding it much, and I know it feels deprived.