June 16, 2016
Get your motor runnin’ and head out on the byway
Posted by: Jennifer
Western Wisconsin, also known as the Driftless Region, has some of the best and most scenic 2-lane roads for bikers – yes, motorcycle riders. Driftless Destinations of Western Wisconsin has routes all mapped out for bikers with suggested stops all along the way.
The topography of the Driftless Region was never softened by glaciers moving through the area. That means that the landscape is truly striking in the way valleys were cut by cold-water streams and how the forested hills rise above those valleys. You can also see prairies and vast grasslands on some of the routes. There are also lookouts noted where the views are just awesome.
There are six routes all mapped out with starting points in La Crosse, Black River, Hillsboro, Onalaska, Tomah, and Sparta. The routes range from 104 miles to 219 miles and averaging about 3 hours if just ride. But there are so many things to see and experiences to engage in that each ride can turn into a day-long touring event!
The Sparta route runs through the towns of Norwalk, Ontario, Rockton, La Farge, Viola, Viroqua, Genoa, La Crosse and back to Sparta. One of the sites or destinations along the way is Wildcat Mountain State Park where one biker noted “nice curves on Highway 33”. Traveling on to La Farge , stop at Wild Things where you can purchase a fur cap for winter or a sheepskin seat cover for your bike. Ease on down the road to Viola where you will find S&S Cycle. The company is now 55 years old and is world famous for producing v-twin high performance parts for motorcycles. Travel on the Viroqua and have lunch at Dave’s Pizza ro stop at the farmers’ market if you happen to be visiting on a Saturday. You can learn a bit about water transportation when you arrive in Genoa and see the Lock & Dam #8 on the Mississippi River. From Genoa, you will travel north to La Crosse – the biggest city on the route. Three “must see” stops in La Crosse are: Grandad Bluff, Hixon House, and Pearl Street Brewery. Then it’s back to Sparta to wet your whistle at the Southside Saloon and make plans for the next day’s tour of Sparta’s museums and historic sights.
Each of the six routes of the Driftless Destinations of Western Wisconsin has lots of special experiences. Spend three or four days and enjoy the great hospitality, special places, and beautiful landscape of the Driftless Region.