Reuniting in Cross Plains

Day 44, 12 miles, Cross Plains

The walk around Indian Lake is really pretty in the morning. There are some people out watching birds and walking their dogs.

The next section is road and I entertain myself by taking pictures of my shadow walking the pavement. I look at the map and see another interesting trail section. It’s a lollipop. Leave the road, follow the trail, loop around, take the same trail back.

“Walking the line… the line on my map… it weaves and meanders, it loops and does lollipops, it goes east, south, north. Following the line of the glaciation. I may not always understand its mysterious ways… a loop? A lollipop??? But follow it I do. To the very end.”

The loop goes through some pretty prairie with lots of wildflowers and also has a shady woods section which is a nice break from the sun.

It’s not windy today so I can keep using my umbrella and I don’t have to wear my sunshirt. It’s cooler this way. I do feel like a tour guide with the umbrella high above my head. Follow me please!

Another brief road walk brings me to the last bit of trail for the day. It’s another section where they’re restoring some of the old prairie. Private land owners partnered with the Ice Age Trail alliance and it’s really lovely. It’s called the Swamplovers preserve. That makes me smile.

The trail skirts the summit of the ridge but I climb up to have the better view. There is a picnic pavilion with tables up there free to use but the owners do reserve the right to use it for their own events. What a great way to manage the place. I stay up there a while stretching out on the picnic bench, writing some emails. Another hiker asks if I’m okay. Yes. Relaxing mode.

The down hill is nice and switchbacked and soon I’m walking to town. A private road allowing hiker traffic leads me to the town center and I take the direct route to the Ice Age Trail headquarters. I had been in contact with Melissa, the marketing director and get to meet other members of the staff. They’re all so nice!

I get the royal treatment. Lunch, shower, laundry and good company. I thoroughly enjoy it.

I hang out the rest of the afternoon since I’m waiting for Greenleaf to fly in to Madison! Yes! Team Green Apple will be reunited again. He finished his adventure in the Whites and is ready to tackle the rest of the Ice Age Trail with me. If only the flight will get a pilot so they can take off.

Melissa has graciously offered to pick him up from the airport and now I’m taking up her whole evening. We get some ice cream in Madison and walk around the lake shore. Because I needed to do more walking. Haha. It’s lovely and I talk her ear off.

Greenleaf finally gets in and we pick him up. Now it’s dark and we haven’t had dinner yet. Melissa suggest a quick pizza and saves the day! We pick up some fuel canisters for Greenleaf and head back to Cross Plains. After repacking we’re ready to head out to the tent site on the hill. Head lamps on and walk we do. Around 10:30 we’re finally at the tent site. We wander around trying to find a flat spot, it takes us a while in the dark. Eventually we find it and are down for the night!


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