Welcome to Friday Favorites!
Here we are again. I’m so glad you decided to return for my fourth segment in a tour around Door County. My first installment started our journey in southern Wisconsin. Once entering Door County we made stops at Renard’s Cheese, Door County Coffee & Tea Co as well as Wagon Trail Campground. Installment two took us to Seaquist Orchards Farm Market and Door County Ice Cream Factory. Today we are going to visit Peninsula State Park. Time to lather on the sunscreen, grab your sun glasses and slip on a good pair of walking shoes cause we are going to get some exercise.
Some of the most beautiful spots to enjoy Wisconsin’s natural beauty are in its state parks. Door County has five of them. There’s Newport State Park, Peninsula State Park, Potawatomi State Park, Rock Island State Park and Whitefish Dunes State Park. Potawatomi State Park is the only park we have yet to visit. Of the five state parks in Door County we have two favorites, Peninsula and Whitefish Dunes. Since we only have so much time today we will limit our tour to Peninsula State Park.
Peninsula State Park has so many things to offer. Watch this video for a tour.
Our favorite activities inside the park have been bicycling the trails, climbing Devil’s Tower and photographing the light house. We rented bicycles at Nor Dor Sport & Cyclery this summer. Their shop is located just outside the entrance to Peninsula State Park. Our first choice for bicycles was a pair of tandems. We thought it would be kind of fun to try them out. Before leaving the premises they ask you to take a test ride on the bike to make sure you can handle it. Gary and I both hopped on, Gary in front and me in the rear. We took a spin around a nearby parking lot. Maneuvering the tandem bicycle was not a challenge. My difficulty was the almost instantaneous wave of motion sickness that washed over me. Apparently my blocked view, because I was riding behind my husband, brought on the all-to-familiar feeling of nausea. This revelation brought about an immediate end to our cruise on a tandem bicycle. Katie and Luke took their turn at sampling a ride on the tandem as well. While their experience was not the same as ours they too opted to forgo tandem riding for individual bicycles. The kind gentlemen assisting us switched gears from our original choice to fitting us for regular bicycles. He wasted no time locating and adjusting a bicycle for each one of us.
Also included in our rental fee was the use of a bicycle helmet. Each of us grabbed a helmet from the multi-shelved storage cabinet, adjusted it to fit our own comfort level then went inside the bicycle shop to complete our registration process. After signing on the dotted line we left for our adventure.
All four of us made a few minor adjustments to our bicycles, then mounted the not-so-comfortable seat and set out for our nine mile whirlwind tour. Weaving throughout Peninsula State Park are numerous bike trails. Peninsula State Park is by no means flat. Our journey took us up, over and through varying degrees of elevation. Towering above us was a canopy of beautiful trees shielding us from the hot summer sun. As we pedaled and shifted our gears we were visually entertained by the beauty of the terrain as well as the variety of bicyclists sharing our path.
As always there are courteous participants and not-so-courteous ones. The polite bicyclists call out their intentions as they slide by on your left, ride single file and follow the signs marking the path. The no-so-polite bicyclists behave in the exact opposite manner. Those people are the ones that make sharing the path more difficult and challenging.
From start to finish we logged nine miles of exertion sprinkled with periods of joy and enthusiasm. All-in-all we had a wonderful adventure.
Climbing look-out-towers is not something I personally can do. I’ve made several attempts but have never been successful. Typically I can make it up a couple of flights of stairs before feeling the beginning stages of panic set in. Once my heart starts to race and my knees begin to shake it is time to abort my mission. As I begin my retreat my companions forge ahead. That is except for Luke. He usually doesn’t even try because he has the same problem I do, a fear of heights.
Once my feet are firmly planted back on earth I uncap my camera lens and begin shooting pictures of my husband and our daughter Katie. No sense missing a photo-op just because it’s from the ground up. My husband and daughter have always been successful at reaching the top of Devil’s Tower. I think I recall having a few pictures in my library taken by them, looking down at me.
Unless there’s some miracle that cures my phobia, reaching the top of Devil’s Tower and enjoying the spectacular view will be something I can only do in my dreams. For those that are unhindered by heights or the inability to climb many flights of stairs, to enjoy the accomplishment as well as the awesome views from above, I’m told, are well worth the effort.
Before we leave Peninsula State Park let me say there are so many more activities one can experience aside from bicycling and Devil’s Tower. There is swimming, boating, camping, hiking, to name a few. There is also a neat old light house that lends itself to photos. As many times as we have been to Peninsula State Park we always find something new to see and do.
By the way winter is also a great time to visit. We have had quite the spectacular display of ice chunks piled one on top of the other. Some of the towers were as tall as or even taller than we are.
This brings us to the end of yet another segment in my guided tour through Door County. With only one more section planned, our tour will end soon. Stay connected for the fifth and final edition.