12 August 2014: Chippewa Falls to Black River Falls to Prairie du Sac to Petunia to the end of the road
On which I don’t think of the Wizard of Oz
After breakfast at Avalon Hotel and Conference Center, we hit the road. J. had been wanting to stop in Black River Falls, which is named for a dam. After passing vintage train cars we arrived at Molly’s Rude Awakening, then located in a colorful garage, but they were in the midst of a move to a new location. We pulled into a parking space designated for hippies — more for a VW bus than a gray Toyota Corolla. Because of the transition, Molly’s was walk-up/drive-through only, but the ice cream was good.
Now all that was left was another detour to Prairie du Sac and Blue Spoon Café. We arrived at about 1:30 p.m. or so and dragged ourselves away maybe an hour or so later — it was so hard to leave. After a quick drive through town to look for a post office, it was really time to leave.
Thanks to construction at the Wisconsin-Illinois border, progress was very slow before and after the Turtle Creek rest area in South Beloit. It was so slow that we wondered if our new plan would be thwarted — to stop at the Hyde Park Animal Hospital to pick up Petunia a day earlier than planned. Just as it was looking highly unlikely, traffic opened up, and we made it to the hospital by 6:20 p.m. or so, nearly 12 (very) full days after starting out on this long, yet short northern adventure.