This last weekend, the Iron Hippie and I went to Okoboji to visit my parents. We had an AMAZING run on Saturday and followed it up with an AWESOME bike ride on Sunday. The Iron Hippie was scheduled to ride for 60 miles and I was scheduled to ride for 2-3 hours. I knew that I would not be able to ride 60 miles in that 2-3 hour time window, but figured I would come close, so we mapped out a route.
Living in central Iowa, we rarely get the opportunity to ride in two states in one day, but since Okoboji is only about 15 miles from the Minnesota border, we decided to map a ride that would take us into Minnesota. We have also never had the opportunity to completely circle the Iowa Great Lakes region by bike, so we decided that we would accomplish this goal on this bike ride!! In order to completely circle the Iowa Great Lakes area AND bike in Iowa and Minnesota (safely), we had to make our route a little longer than 60 miles…it ended up being 70.5 miles. We definitely could have made the route shorter, but we would have had to ride our bikes on some roads with really heavy traffic and decided to opt out of that option.
We donned our bikes at 6 am and headed out in perfect weather…low 60s, less than 5 mph winds, full sun…couldn’t be better for cycling!! The 6 am start time would allow us to get most of our ride done before the Iowa Great Lakes region woke up 🙂
On the north edge of the Iowa Great Lakes area, there is a stretch of road that is right on the Iowa/Minnesota border. Since we were the only ones on the road, we decided to take a picture of us riding down the road…my husband was in Iowa, while I was in Minnesota!! Not everyday you can zig zag across the road and switch the state you are in so quickly 🙂
During this ride, I could definitely tell that I had raced hard the week before. My legs were a bit sluggish, but I just kept pushing forward!! We finished our 70.5 mile route in 3:55:00…giving us an average speed of 18.0 mph…I have become stronger and gotten faster on the bike and I am super stoked about it!!
We LOVED this route, the smooth surfaces and the little vehicle traffic that we encountered!! This is definitely a ride we will be doing again in the future!!