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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Saturday, Nov. 29, 2014

Wed
Hi: 32
Lo: 23
Thu
Hi: 25
Lo: 14
Fri
Hi: 31
Lo: 29
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Beat the snow on a bike.
Beat the snow on a bike. (Photo: Jason McDowell)
How many of you "car plowed" your way out?
How many of you "car plowed" your way out? (Photo: Jason McDowell)
That snow pile in the back? That's a van.
That snow pile in the back? That's a van. (Photo: Jason McDowell)
Jeff Madson "kicking it hardcore in the snow, Kathy Ireland style."
Jeff Madson "kicking it hardcore in the snow, Kathy Ireland style." (Photo: Jason McDowell)
The lakefront is a bit windy, but Lincoln Memorial Drive is a bit empty.
The lakefront is a bit windy, but Lincoln Memorial Drive is a bit empty. (Photo: Jason McDowell)
Massive waves on the breakwater.
Massive waves on the breakwater. (Photo: Jason McDowell)
North and Farwell is a ghost town.
North and Farwell is a ghost town. (Photo: Jason McDowell)

Beat the snow by bicycle

Today was not so bad.

When I walked outside to start my trek to the office I saw my neighbor trying to "car plow" his way out of the driveway. With snow up to his door frame he gunned it into the embankment encasing our driveway where he promptly stopped. He spun his wheels for a few seconds, back and forth, and knew that he wasn’t going anywhere soon.

Meanwhile, I pulled my ride out of the snowbank, shook it off and pushed it to the street. I was going to ride my bike, a Bridgestone CB-1 mountain bike with fat fenders and studded tires, to work!

My street was decently plowed by this point (for a bike, anyway) with a car's-width all around me. What little snow there was remaining on the path was essentially hard packed and easy to tear into. As I continued, some of the roads got a little more hairy and the true side effects of the blizzard were starting to show. Snow was still piling and drifting in intersections and I had to keep a foot ready, just in case I felt a little too much slippage. Many intersections were still impassable by motor vehicles.

I passed by neighbors who were helping dig each other out and kids playing on top of Yellowstone quality mountains. Even though many folks were probably working the hardest they’ve worked all season everyone was still all smiles and waves.

I found I wasn’t the only one on my bike today. I met Jeff Madson, a state employee, on Lincoln Memorial Drive, and we shared part of the trip together. While city offices were closed to the public, employees were still required to show up.

"I chose to ride this girl's bike today, just in case I had to take a fall," he noted, pointing to the sloping top tube on his Kathy Ireland Huffy. I agreed with the choice, remembering some of the painful falls I had taken early in my winter cycling career. "It’s kinda nice to have the entire Lincoln Memorial Drive to ourselves today."

Soon we parted and I wondered if Gov. Walker would appreciate Madson’s cost-saving measures. I tur…

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