Day 19: Cow Tales

Date: June 14th, 2019

Miles Traveled: 37 (+ an 83 mile ferry ride)

Weather: Mostly cloudy. Cool

Physical Status: Good.

TL;DR: Ferries are fun… especially when you feel as if you’re going to go overboard if you don’t hold onto something. 😉

Today was a relatively relaxed day. Since my ferry ride across Lake Michigan was scheduled for 4:45pm and the dock was just 37 miles away (yes, just 37 miles away), I slept in and ordered my ferry ticket before dressing for the day’s ride.

After having breakfast with my previous hosts, Jim and Geneva, at 10:30am, I rode 10 miles with Jim along U.S. State Bicycle Route (USSBR) #35 before we parted ways. With a strong southern wind at our backs, we cruised through rolling hills and passed by a number of marinas and forests with houses dotting each side of the highway. It was a great day to go for a bike ride.

For the next 27 miles, I continued along USSBR #35 along rural and suburban roads, over a drawbridge, past a flooded road, and eventually to the Muskegon, Michigan, my destination for the day:

Since I arrived an hour before the suggested ferry arrival time (4:00pm), I explored a small candy shop in town who had a variety of candies, fudge, and ice cream available:

…but since I’m a cheap bastard and everything was $4.99/lb and up, I ended up just getting 3 Cow Tales for a dollar:

Why “Cow Tales” instead of “Cow Tails”? Your guess is as good as mine.


After arriving at the ferry terminal, I retrieved my tickets and pushed my bike up alongside the queue of cars waiting to file into the ferry.

While standing around with normal people for 30min beside my totally inconspicuous loaded bike, I briefly chatted with a nice lady who was just coming back from an annual birding conference held in Michigan. She offered to take a picture of me and, thus, I stood there, not knowing what to do with myself:

Magazine cover worthy? I think so.


10 minutes later, one the crew members checked my tickets and I proceeded to roll my bike up a ramp and into the ferry.

After attempting to figure out how to secure my bike using the provided tightening straps, getting the strap stuck, and trying to unravel the mess I created for 20min, I hit the “fuck it” button, locked my bike to the metal rack, propped up the kickstand, and called it a day.

I mean, does this even look like a user friendly contraption to you?

a) No, no it doesn’t.

b) Qué?

c) No, Quinn, you’re just dumb.

If you chose answers a, b, or c, you are correct.

As the ferry began to accelerate out of the terminal, I walked up to the passenger deck and chilled for a bit before going up to the top deck.

Let me start by saying the top deck was intense.

After perilously shifting from side to side on the passenger deck like a person whose blood-alcohol is three times the legal limit, I climbed the stairs leading up to the top deck and proceeded to be blasted by what felt like 30 or 40 mph winds as the boat rocked from side to side.

As I stood there, clutching onto the railing for dear life, only one thought came across my mind: “I should go sailing more often“.

It was pretty awesome:


After about 2.5 hours on the ferry, I arrived in Milwaukee at around 7:15pm (Central Time).

I made it to a different time zone! Yay!

As the ferry slowly proppeled itself towards the Milwaukee terminal, myself and the other passengers enjoyed some nice views of the city and the Lake Michigan coastline:


After riding off of the ferry and pedalling not even a tenth of a mile, I suddenly heard someone call my name from afar.


I looked toward the direction of the sound and saw a bicyclist waving at me as he caught up. It was my host for the night, Robert.

Robert was a retired, older man living in a small flat with his dog, Brownie. How can I describe Robert…

He was just a really cool, chill dude.

After biking back to his place, we went out to dinner at a local Mexican place and talked about his recent bike tour to France and a number of other topics.

Although Robert offered to let me stay and extra night and attend the annual Fat Tire Tour of Milwaukee, a 15-20 mile bar crawl in which 300+ bike enthusiasts and beer aficionados descend upon the town of Milwaukee and ride to different breweries in town, I had to depart the following day to keep with my schedule.


Tomorrow, I’ll be riding 70 miles from southern Milwaukee, to Deerfield, Wisconsin, where I’ll be staying with a couple named Brett and Doug.

Until next time!

11 thoughts on “Day 19: Cow Tales

  1. Well, that certainly looks like Lake Michigan weather! Still loving your posts, Quinn. Wish you could have stayed for the bike & beer fete. I can just imagine the pile ups! Keep pedaling!


  2. Hello…friend of your Mom’s (college)…enjoying your posts and vicariously the trip. I’m confused on the dates. The blog has the date 6/14 on it and say day 19. As I write this, it’s 6/19. Am I behind or misunderstanding?


    1. Hey Michael, totally understandable. I’m actually about 5 days behind on behind on blog posts at the moment, due to lack of time and energy to write consistently.


      1. So if I read that correctly, your actually further along the trip? Meaning (Saturday 6/22) today I read your blog from the botanical gardens near Madison Wisconsin, but actually today you are in Red Wing Minnesota or near there (as per the Where’s Quinn map)?


      2. Yup! That’s correct. I’ve been trying to post everyday to catch up, but it’s surprisingly difficult to do so while also seeing the sights, contacting future hosts, eating, sleeping, finding WiFi, etc.

        I suspect once I get out to South Dakota, I’ll be able to do so. *knocks furiously on wood*


  3. Another good post.
    I love the west coast of MI it is the western most part of EDT.
    You can play golf until 10 pm.
    When on the ferry. Did you think of the Edmund Fitzgerald?
    A ship that sank on Lake MI.
    Mark McCullough went to Hope college in Holland MI.
    On to Wi your 5th state.
    Btw you were the talk of the party at Aunt Gerry & Uncle Chris. I heard you called in.


  4. Is there a map of your route so we can see where you are going real time? Michigan and Wisconsin are my fav places. Maybe you can get some cheese curds or New Glarus Spotted Cow (beer). People in WI are very proud of it.


  5. Hey Quinn, your posts are 4 days behind! Step it up! 😉 … jk you rock. Of course you have a place to crash in Seattle, when you get here. Hoping to bike along with you if possible at some point. Be safe, George

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 1 person

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