David Freeze: Making good headway, ready for the final week

Published 12:05 am Monday, July 17, 2017

Editor’s note: Salisbury native David Freeze is cycling from Anacortes, Washington, to Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Post is chronicling each day of his ride. Contact him at david.freeze@ctc.net.

This morning was absolutely beautiful on Leach Lake in Walker, Minnesota. The fishermen were coming in to launch their boats and the water was calm as could be as daylight came. Leach Lake is huge, giving one the same feeling of looking out on one of the Great Lakes. My evening at the Lakeview Inn had been short but very restful, but it was time to go.

Surprisingly, I found lots of hills to climb this morning as I continued to follow Minnesota 200. Whipholt was a little resort community with very tightly packed vacation homes overlooking the lake. Nobody was up except one walker as I rode through and checked it out.

About 20 miles later was the very interesting town of Remer, lauded as “Home of Bigfoot.” They have a festival in July that includes storytelling and Bigfoot calling. The town itself is brightly painted and well kept up. I missed the festival by a little over a week. I did spot a Bigfoot standing in a field as I left town.

The next town was Hill City, making me think that it was either located at a higher elevation or had a bunch of hills around it. There were some hills around but the Hill name came from Hill Lake, close to the middle of town.

Then I kept riding into Jacobson and found the Mississippi River flowing through town, just about 100 miles downstream from Lake Itasca where its source is located. In Jacobson, the water is at least 60 feet wide and has a strong current. The town likes its association with America’s most famous river.

Minnesota 200 ended and I turned onto US 2, the highway I spent so much time with back in Idaho and Montana. The road was a little worse for wear as it neared the town of Floodwood, where I am spending the night after 88 miles into an east wind of varying degrees. Some of it was hardly noticeable but the last nine miles had some bite to it.

With that, I am positioned about 43 miles from Duluth and plan to go there directly tomorrow morning. Lake Superior, the fifth of my Great Lakes, touches Duluth, which has several bike shops. I want to get some photos of the lake and maybe dip my front tire, but that’s not required. Lake Superior is just a bonus for this adventure, not the goal of it. At least a few bike supplies should get me in shape for the ride to Green Bay that actually will begin tomorrow afternoon.

I occasionally list the sponsors who have helped make this ride happen. One of them is the Men on Missions group at First Baptist Church in China Grove. One of their most skilled members and one of the biggest fans of my bike adventures, Bradley Eagle, had a heart attack last night and passed away this morning. Bradley will be fondly remembered as wearing a Route 66 shirt and hat as he celebrated last year’s ride at Farmer’s Day, but of course he will be greatly missed by those of us who knew him for so much more. As I have mentioned before, Sunday mornings on the bike usually include a good round of hymn singing, just as they did today, but this time with tears in my eyes. I bet Bradley got to see today’s ride up close.

I’m excited about tomorrow’s ride and figuring out how to make my way into Wisconsin to add state number 45. There are about 400 miles left to go and likely some fun along the way. I will be back with more details on what to expect tomorrow. I am so glad that you folks are riding along!

See more from David Freeze