Sunday, June 14, 2009

GTDRI 09: Recon Report

<===Cool Barn Door

Well, I got out for just a bit to drive some of the northern part of the loop for the Guitar Ted Death Ride Invitational yesterday.

I had to find a good road to connect with a section over in Clayton County I want to use. I think this will be suitable!

This road runs about 25 miles from Echo Valley State Park over to Elkader. It follows the Turkey River for most of that distance.

<===The Turkey River and the road get mighty cozy in a few spots!

Being a Northeast Iowa river valley, the scenes are pretty to look at. The grade as I drove it, is mostly downhill, although there are a couple of rollers to start things out. I was going to use this as the return route, but I am very tempted to use it as the starting of the ride. We'll see....

This is a county road, so traffic may help in that decision too.

<===Silos that look like they are right in the road.

There are a lot of scenic views of farms, the river, and of the valley itself. It would be cool to see this going either way, so I am not going to fret too much about the way I choose to run it.

Either way, it'll be hilly, not perfectly flat, and very twisty turny.

<===Headed down into the river valley and Elgin, Iowa.

One thing to think about is that after a long day in the saddle it might be nice to have some shade and protection from any potential south winds coming back in my original plan. Coming back the other way? will be really hilly!

But, we will be coming up from the south if we do that clockwise rotation.

The road not far from Echo Valley.

Well, I still have to do some reconnoitering, but this should come together fairly well. Lots of little towns this year, and hardly any roads "on the grid" at all. Many ups, downs, twists, and turns.

Stay tuned! More will be getting posted in a week or so.

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