Bikepacking Overnighter Bliss: Blue Mounds

Don’t you yearn for a day when you can just get out the door and bike somewhere to spend a night away from ordinary life?

That epic trip across the Scottish Highland or that picture-perfect route across the Alps are surely dreamy, but they take a lot of effort to plan, don’t materialize very often, and cost a good chunk of money. Overnighters close to home can be just as fulfilling.

Truth be told, besides needing some time away from it all, I also wanted to test a new camping stove (MSR Pocket Rocket 2). That served as a good excuse to go camping. The best part? I did it on a Friday after work.

See, I’m just a regular dude with a day job and big dreams, like anyone else out there.

I loaded my bike with everything I needed the night before. This way, I wouldn’t waste time in the morning getting things ready. All I had to do was hop on my bike and take off. I set out on my normal commute to work (10 miles) with a fully-loaded bike.

Saddle bag, frame bag, and the works seemed a little overkill at first, after all, I was only going to work. But the extra load turned the daily commute into something different. Even though I’ve cycled this very same route countless times, it felt like I was accomplishing something.

3 pm ticked by. Awesome. Time to save my work, shut down the computer, change back into my riding clothes, and head out the door again. This time, I was biking to Blue Mounds State Park, 17 miles from my office. The plan was to get to the campground before dark to set up camp, stroll into town to get a hold of some beers, other sundries, and get back to camp to chill. Conveniently enough, the town of Blue Mounds is less than a mile away from the campsite where I was spending the night. Easy.

Beer in hand, everything is up to par at camp. I’m off the clock. All I have to worry about is if my tent is taut enough for my liking. Tending to the fire is more soul-warming than sifting through my inbox.

Robocallers can’t catch me here.

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