Tuesday’s ride started out from the Riverview Middle School in Plymouth. Plymouth is a sleepy little German community about 15 miles due west of Sheboygan. The town welcomed the bikers with open arms and even put on a show Monday evening. The Junge Kamaradan, the only high school German band performed at the Plymouth City Park adjacent from the school. The performance was excellent and the kids and the audience really got into the mood with the songs they played.
Tuesday morning leaving Plymouth we headed due north towards Elkhart Lake and then took a turn to the east. Leaving Elkhart Lake we came across the handy work of the glaciers from years past as we pedaled up and down several hills. It was a very hilly five mil stretch until we came up to the first water stop at Trinity Lutheran Church.
From Trinity we started a slow downhill descent to Lake Michigan. We came to the intersection of county highway LS and headed north along the grounds of Whistling Straits golf course. Whistling Straits was a flurry of activity in preparation for next week’s PGA championship. You can’t see any of the golf course from the road, but parking lots where being mowed and a giant media center was set up in the field.
Just north of Whistling Straits is the community of Cleveland and the lovely Cleveland Hika Park beach. Normally this is a great place for a picnic, but unfortunately the algae bloom was in full swing and the place smelt terrible. The Veterans for Peace had a very nice rest area set up with food for sale and I had a chance to sample some aged gouda from the nearby Saxon dairy. The cheese had a very firm, nutty quality and I highly recommend it. North from Cleveland is Manitowoc.
The city of Manitowoc would be a great stop along the route for lunch, but I arrived in the city at 10:30 am, a little early for lunch. The route took us all the through town from south to north. Highlights along the route are the Cedar Crest dairy and the Manitowoc Maritime Museum. The last time I rode through Manitowoc I stopped at the Court House, a brewpub for lunch. Since court was not in session, I continued north through downtown and along the Maritime Trail to Two Rivers. On the trail I caught a refreshing breeze off the lake, the only respite from this very muggy day.
A stop at Kurtz’s deli and pub was in order for lunch. I arrived at 11:30am and the opportunity to get a beer out of their freshly cleaned tap lines. Kurtz’s features a long list of German and other import beers and has three flavors of Haacker Pschor on tap. Kurtz’s does not have a gril but serves soup, salad and hot and cold deli sandwiches. I had the Kurtz’s burger which is shaved roast beef served hot with cheese and a pickle. Cole slaw was on the side. This is a great bar with a great atmosphere and it really shows with their bustling lunch crowd.
From Two Rivers the route headed to Neshoto Beach and then turned north towards Point Beach State Park. Both beaches where open and many people where dipping in the lake to cool off from the humid mid 80’s day we where having.
Tuesday destination was Mishicot which is about 6 miles from Point Beach. The ride was hot with a slight climb up from the lake. I had a wheel sucker get on my tail and he drafted off of me those last five miles without returning the favor. Good thing I was still in a good mood from Kurtz’s, otherwise I’d probably do something passive agressive to him.
Mishicot welcomed us with open arms. The town is named after chief Mishicot of the Potawatomie tribe. We stayed at the high school and the entire town practically showed up to welcome us. We had food vendors selling snacks, two bands playing, activities, and even a bonfire (in 80 degree heat). The nearby Fox Hills retreat opened up their pool for swimming and a chamber of commerce ran a shuttle bus to take the riders to their small downtown area.
Tuesday was a hot and steamy 63 miles, but the beautiful hills out of Elkhart lake, the Lake Michigan scenery, and the hospitality of the community of Mishicot made it one of the best days on the tour.