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"America's­ Little Switzerland" Weekend (Oktoberfest!)

  • Sep 28, 2013 · 8:00 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

Join us for a fun Oktoberfest weekend outing, Saturday, September 28th and Sunday, September 29th, in New Glarus, the center of "America's Little Switzerland", a unique and authentic Swiss community in southern Wisconsin.

There will be something for everyone this weekend, with both trail rides and road rides.

New Glarus has a quaint downtown area with shopping and dining, the Swiss Historical Village and Museum, the New Glarus Brewery, which even has tours, a winery, and nearby cheese factories with tours.

Each day, we will have a group breakfast, then head out for a bike ride. Afternoon activities after our bike rides include swimming in the pool, touring the town and relaxing at the motel.  Each evening, we will have a group dinner.

New Glarus is celebrating their Oktoberfest this weekend, with many activities and events planned in the afternoon and evening all weekend in downtown New Glarus.

Click here for photos from last year's ride.

Trail Rides

We will ride the Sugar River State Trail and the Badger State Trail this weekend.  Both trails have a crushed limestone surface and are suitable for hybrid bikes or road bikes with wider tires.  All rides include a lunch stop and several other rest stops along the way.

Saturday: Sugar River State Trail (Options for 12, 32 or 46 miles)

The Sugar River State Trail runs in the valley of the Sugar River and is very flat.  The length of the entire trail is 23 miles (one way), which will take you over a replica covered bridge to Brodhead.  The shorter routes take you on out-and-back trips to Monticello and Albany.  We'll stop for lunch in Brodhead and take several breaks along the way.

Sunday: Badger State Trail (20 miles)

The Badger State Trail is on a former rail grade and is very flat.  This trail takes us through the 1,200-foot-long Stewart Tunnel and on to the town of Belleville where we'll stop for lunch before returning to New Glarus.  You'll need to have a headlight for your bicycle or bring a flashlight to make your way through the tunnel.

Road Rides

Three unique and very challenging road rides are planned for the weekend.  Think "Swiss Alps" because each day's road ride will offer mile-after-mile of rolling hills and several very challenging hills as well.  (Click HERE for elevation profiles.)  All rides include a lunch stop and several other rest stops along the way.

Friday: Trolling to Mount Horeb (Options for 40 or 62 miles)

For those who wish to arrive early for the weekend, Friday afternoon's ride takes us to Mount Horeb, known as Troll Capital of the World.  The 62-mile ride is an extension of the 40-mile ride to Mount Horeb and goes past Blue Mounds State Park.

Saturday: Yellowstone Lake State Park (Options for 24 or 68 miles)

Saturday's ride is extremely challenging with continuous rolling hills.  The longer route includes a stop at Yellowstone Lake State Park.

Sunday: Down By The Lazy River (Options for 38 or 61 miles)

Sunday's road ride weaves back-and-forth over the Sugar River several times, where you may switch over to the Sugar River State Trail if you wish.  The 38-mile route goes to Albany and the 61-mile route also goes to Brodhead.

New Glarus and Verona Accommodations

The New Glarus website lists 2 motels, several B&B's and a primitive campground.  The 2 motels are:

These motels are probably already sold-out due to the demand for Oktoberfest weekend.  I suggest getting on their waiting lists, but also reserving a motel in Verona to make sure you have a room in case you don't clear the waiting list.  Suggested accommodations in Verona include:

* * * Due to this being Oktoberfest weekend, it is strongly recommended that reservations be made ASAP for your lodging for the course of your stay. * * * 

On Friday, plan to arrive at 10:30 AM.  We will push-off promptly at 11:00 AM.

On Saturday and Sunday, plan to arrive by 8:00 AM. We will push-off promptly at 8:30 AM.

An email will be sent to everyone who RSVPs with further specific plans for each day.

Trail Pass Information

Note: A Wisconsin state trail pass is required to ride on these trails. There are many places in New Glarus where you may purchase a trail pass if needed.

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  • Michelle

    Good ride, Ron and Louisa were good hosts. Ron was about 45 mins late on Friday but we still had plenty of time to do 40 miles of hilly riding.

    October 2, 2013

  • Keith

    Nice route today Ron.

    September 28, 2013

  • Joe H.


    September 28, 2013

  • Nancy

    see you on Sunday only I'm getting a late start here on Sat morn

    September 28, 2013

  • Karey

    Sorry, I can no longer attend the ride on Sunday. Have fun!

    September 25, 2013

  • Ron

    For the trail riders, Brodhead will be celebrating their AutumnFest on Saturday in their downtown square, with a Chili Contest, Vendors, Hay Rides, Music, Food & More!

    September 25, 2013

  • linda

    Can I get the trail info route off line? I will not be there in time to start with the group.

    September 23, 2013

    • Ron

      Linda, the links to the trail maps are in the ride description above. Just click and you'll get the trail info.

      September 23, 2013

  • Dorene D.

    contact the Chamber in New Glarus if you want to camp
    per the New Glarus Oktoberfest Facebook page:
    "We now have camping available for Oktoberfest! Contact the Chamber at[masked] or [masked]"

    1 · September 23, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Looks great! Won't be able to now - having out of town visitor. Ride on!

    September 22, 2013

  • Primavera

    anyone open to sharing camping spot saturday and possibly carpooling? milwaukee/tosa area here

    September 9, 2013

  • Donna

    Is anyone riding on Sunday? I'd like to figure how to meet up with you.

    September 7, 2013

    • Ron

      A few days before the weekend, I'll send an email with detailed plans for the weekend, including the breakfast and meeting locations.

      September 7, 2013

  • Michelle

    We reserved a group camping spot at Yellowstone.

    August 1, 2013

    • Donna

      Is this a group site? Can I camp at it on Saturday night?

      September 7, 2013

  • Donna

    I can go on Sunday's ride.

    September 7, 2013

  • Joe H.

    The Friday and Saturday road rides look fun!

    August 17, 2013

  • James P D.

    Camping at Yellowstone Lake - Will join for the rides

    August 3, 2013

  • Elizabeth R.

    Trolling on Friday sounds great!

    July 30, 2013

  • linda

    Coming from Chicago. Anyone need a ride on the way up?

    July 15, 2013

  • Bernie

    I will make the Saturday but won't be able to make Sunday.

    March 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Strong maybe

    March 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Looks great!

    March 16, 2013

  • Kent W

    Sounds great! Unfortunately, with my current injury situation, there's no way I can commit to this right now...

    March 16, 2013

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