Wednesday, October 2, 2019

5 x 35

When you train a lot and ride long distances for a cause, sometimes it's nice just to do a fun ride. Last Saturday was one of those. A group of us rode the White Pine Trail, stopping at breweries along the way. We did a couple of rides similar to this a few years ago and we finally were able to get folks together to do it again.

Cedar Springs Brewing - the halfway point
The 5 x 35 is 35 miles of riding with stops at five breweries along the trail. Our friend Susan and Elvin from Chicago (the originators of the idea) came up to join us. It was rainy in the morning, but by the time we pulled out of Comstock Park at noon the rain had stopped, although it was still a little damp. As the day went on the weather warmed and the sun came out. It was a beautiful day to ride.

For the first stop we didn't even get out of Comstock Park. It was three miles to the Bier Distillery. This stop required us to hop off the WPT and cut thru a small side path and across West River Drive. Bier Distillery makes beer and spirits. We had a drink and got back on the trail heading north to Rockford.

Stop 2 was at Depot 36, part of Kayla Rae Cellars. They make mostly wine, but a couple of beers as well. Rockford was full of people participating in Harvest Days. Anyone want to build a scarecrow?

We stopped for lunch at Cedar Springs Brewing, our turnaround spot. At this point we were 16.5 miles into the ride. We sat out on their back patio and drank German beers and ate giant pretzels in the sunshine.

On our way back south we stopped at Rockford Brewing. Because of Harvest Days they had a beer tent set up, which meant music and a party atmosphere. Also, in my humble opinion, this was some of the best beer of the day.

We finished up back in Comstock Park at Elk Brewing. We had started the ride at noon and it was now after 6:30 p.m., which means it was almost dark when we left the brewery. Luckily it was only a mile back to the cars and there are street lamps along that section of the trail. All in all, a great day and were looking forward to the next one.

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