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Summer Evening Bike Rides in Iola

If you haven’t been on your bicycle for a while, now is a good time to start. Members of the Heartland Bike Club will be hosting Monday and Wednesday night bike rides of lightly traveled back roads in the Iola-Scandinavia this summer, beginning May 5.

The rides will start at 6 p.m. from the carving of Vidar Of Iola on State Street and Chet Krause Drive. (If you are driving a vehicle to the starting point, please park in the parking lot to the east of the carving.)

The rides will range from 15 to 30 miles and will take bikers through lesser-traveled back roads in the area. Short loops through the countryside will bring bikers back to the starting point in case of time restraints and/or physical limitations. Local bikers who know the area will also lead a faster-paced group, if required.

Biking pace ranges from 12-22 miles per hour, depending on who shows up. The rides have a no-drop policy. All bikers must wear biking helmets. Bikers are also encouraged to have water bottles to replenish lost fluids while biking.

“This part of the state – and especially this northwestern part of Waupaca County – has some of the best biking roads in Wisconsin,” said Iola biker Greg Loescher, a member of the Heartland Bike Club, which has members primarily from the Stevens Point area but also Iola, Amherst and Waupaca. “Whenever I have hosted a ride for our club, the bikers are just amazed at how beautiful and quiet the roads are around here.

“Area residents who primarily drive on the county trunks or main state highways will be equally impressed by touring the area on a bicycle,” he pointed out. "Plus, there are lots of old silos, barns, great natural features and wildlife to be seen."

The rides will not just be social. Participants will also learn about bicycle maintenance, riding techniques, pacing, nutrition and schedules of other bike rides in the area and with the Heartland Bike Club.

For more information, contact Greg Loescher at 715-445-2456 or e-mail him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Or visit "Bike Iola! on Facebook. For more information on the Heatland Bike Club and its weekend and weekly ride scheudles in Portage and Waupaca counties, go tot he club's website at www.heartlandclub.org