7/17 – today we start a nice, flat 18 mike walk on a Rails to Trails multi-use path along the Sugar River, that the Ice Age Trail shares with the Sugar River Trail. We will break this walk into two days, camping out overnight, as the only town enroute (Monticello) does not have any lodgings. The young and strong would do this walk in one day, but I am the old and not-so-strong, and I want to test out the healing of my foot.
We encountered a retiree bicycling group from Madison, and the riders walked with us a while and took our picture. They hadn’t encountered hikers on their bike trail before!
We have food for the journey, but the map doesn’t indicate a place to refill our drinking water today. A challenge! Jim has been carrying his water filter, and today will be his first chance to use it. By mid afternoon, we were hot and thirsty, so at the next bridge, Jim scooped up some Sugar River and squeezed it through the filter to refill our canteens. The Sugar River is not sweet, but the water was very welcome. We each carry two quarts of water (adding 5 lbs. to our packs) plus Jim fills a collapsible water container with another two quarts for supper and breakfast during our last water stop of the day.
As you can see by Jim’s fashionable outfit, the mosquitoes were out in full force today. Not only did we need our net suits plus Deet, we had to zip the suits all the way up to our necks. Walking along like this makes me feel like an astronaut in a space suit, viewing the world from a distance. Eating reminds me of watching the females in Muslim countries eat wearing their veils. You can do it, but it’s no fun… Joggers and walkers stopped to ask where they could get suits like ours. Answer: Amazon!
7/18 – in the morning we broke camp and walked the last 5 miles to New Glarus.