More Planes Than You Can Shake A Stick At

Hank – Since we had a somewhat short day of 39 miles we slept in and left a little late. The sun was out and a fair wind was blowing. Leaving Redgranite on County Road E I was surprised at how many deer were in or near the road. We headed southeast to Berlin (accent on the first syllable), which would put us on State Highway 91 and give us a straight shot to the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) museum on the south side of Oshkosh. After ten miles we stopped at the Walmart in Berlin to restock some toiletries. Out front the local Knights of Columbus were cooking and selling hamburgers and bratwursts. We parked our bikes and chatted with them a bit. After buying our supplies we ordered up a couple of bratwurst meal deals. The brats were delicious. The guys learned more about our adventure and, now that we’re friends, were happy to take a card with our blog address.

The wind picked up and the skies darkened as we left Berlin. Gray clouds scudded across the sky and intermittently dropped rain, which was driven by the wind. Fortunately, it wasn’t the heavy rain like we had the day before but it was still enough. From Berlin we had 22 miles to the EAA museum. We stopped at the halfway point, a cemetery by Waukau with some big trees to shield us from the rain, and had a quick snack and drink. Eating a Clif bar by gravestones from the 1860s was kind of spooky. Back on the road we quickly covered the last 11 miles and arrived at the museum.

The airfield next to the museum was loaded with planes. Monday is the start of the annual EAA Airventure and something like 10,000 planes were coming in for the week-long air show. I bet the control tower is a very busy place. We parked our bikes in front of the museum and left everything to dry in the blowing wind. The museum was great and we saw more different kinds of aircraft than I’ve ever seen in one place before, especially the homemade aircraft.

When the rain finally stopped for the day we left to get a bite to eat. Then we stopped by the mall to get a gift for our Warmshowers hosts. On the way to the mall we saw the Goodwill store had a huge bicycle sale going on. The bikes almost filled the parking lot. I was waiting outside the mall for Kathy when a woman rode up on a Huffy bike. She saw my Spokane cycling cap.

“Spokane? I’m from Spokane.” And that’s how I met Diane Rudnick, who I learned later has an interesting story of her own. She and her husband had flown in for the air show. She and some friends bought bikes at Goodwill to use to get around the air show during the week. We took each others photos and she took our retired business card so she could check out our blog.

With the rain gone and the skies clearing there were now so many small aircraft in the sky. Most of them were following the same pattern so I assume they were coming in to land. We headed out to Al and Sharon’s house, only four miles away, where we were warmly welcomed. We stored our bikes in the garage and took over one of the spare bedrooms. Al has toured many times since he was a teen and we shared many stories during the evening before we called it a night. When I told Al about the bike sale at the Goodwill, he laughed and said they do that every year. Lots of people here for the show buy the bikes and then leave them or donate them back.

Kathy – Regardless of Google Maps saying it was a flat ride, today’s 39 miles was a day of rolling hills.  Lucky all the hills were gradual rather than short and steep.  I must be continuing to get stronger with the passing days because the hills really didn’t bother me.  We got wet today, not as wet as yesterday but plenty wet. The temps were in the mid 70’s and the rain and mist kept it a cool ride.  So much better than the 100+ degree weather a few weeks ago. The strong headwinds are still not my favorite though.

We saw lots of gorgeous country side today with the rolling hills and farmlands with scattered trees. We tried the Wisconsin cheese curds yesterday and the bratwursts today.  I guess tomorrow will be the beer and then according to the locals we have our Wisconsin bases covered. 🙂  I was not a fan of eating a protein bar and have a few swigs of water in the cemetery under a tree as it rained. Hank pulled in and I followed.  We only stayed there about 5 – 10 minutes before I was ready to go.  Little things like this cemetery reminded me again to be safe on the roads.  I said a quick prayer for the family members of those deceased and we moved on. The EAA Museum was pretty cool and seeing all the planes flying in was super cool as you would often see 4 – 5 planes flying next to each other.  It was unusual to see the all planes flying so close to each other and it looked like they would hit each other.  Arriving at Al and Sharron’s place, our Warm Showers host was a good end to the day.  We showered and talked with them for hours.  They are really nice people and we very much appreciate their hospitality.

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  1. Nina Shephard FSPA July 22, 2018 at 9:04 am

    I’m glad you finally got to taste cheese curds. I just couldn’t explain what they are!


    1. I learned from Ken that it’s best to eat them when they are first pulled out.


  2. What is a Warmshower host? I didn’t see an explanation of that and I have been following your blog since June 6.


    1. – It connects bike travelers with people who volunteer to host them. Amenities vary with the host.


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