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Well negotiations over the signs and funding seem to be going well. The highway department is willing to help out in a big way by helping to put up signs and let us have used posts where needed before having to purchase more. I also spoke with Dick Miller, our Chairman of the County Board, today and he doesn't see any problem combining the grants to pay for the increased costs associated with the larger signs. He is putting me on the agenda for the Executive Finance Committee meeting on May 4th to discuss this whole situation. My plan at this time is to sign as many loops as possible until we run out of money and then if we still need more go out and find it. I'll have a new quote on the signs soon and that will answer quite a few questions that I have. ...

This mornings meeting with the Trempealeau County Highway Committee went very well. I did my homework and had some packets prepared for everyone with notes highlighted. What came out of it is that we will be using customized signs permitted by the MUTCD, which is a document that tells you what signs to use and where to place them, which are also much larger than the ones I had designed so will be much more expensive. I haven't gotten the quotes needed to know exactly how much more it is going to cost but at least this way I won't have to worry about ever having to change them out unless stolen, wore out, or damaged. There is a possibility that I will have to move the money from the grant to make mountain bike paths into the funds for the sign project. This is unfortunate but if we spend the money wisely and do a good job at it I'm certain that we will find the resources at a later date for the mountain bike paths. In fact, I'm not certain at this point if that will be enough to sign the entire trail system but I will cross that bridge when I get to it. The final decisions have been postponed until a meeting on the 27th but overall I feel confident that everything will work just fine. One suggestion from Walter Ordway was that it would be cool if we could put the names of the loops up somewhere on the trails so we will be placing the green bicycle destination signs up along the state highways as shown in the bottom picture.

I think the biggest difference between what I was designing and what the MUTCD has as requirements is that I had mainly the perspective from bicyclists on the roads and the MUTCD is more concerned with motorists. With this in mind visibility is the name of the game so the signs are much bigger. That should make the trails safer to travel on bike and the turns easier to see.

I am really excited to get to work putting these signs up and it seems as though that date is getting closer and closer.
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Yeah, its so nice to be in the paper for something positive :) ...

I'm not sure why everything comes out blue but here is the article that came out in the Trempealeau County Times this week talking about the sign project.

I'm not sure why everything comes out blue but here is the article that came out in the Trempealeau County Times this week talking about the sign project. ...

I just got this new map in for the newest loop, Loop #18. You would take Hwy 53 North out of Whitehall to Co Hwy D and go North for the best ride. You need to be heading south on Witt hill to get the best experience :) ...

Okay everybody keep your fingers crossed! I'm headed into the Parks Committee meeting tonight to discuss using Petrik Park as our first mountain bike trail system here in Trempealeau County. Its rather flat so this will be more of the obstacle and structure based riding. I put together a little montage of some ideas to show to the board. Hopefully they take the bait and we can start making some solid plans for construction. You'd think with a grant like we got for creating new trails that places would be lining up for us to spend the money on but alas money doesn't solve every problem & usually creates its own kinds of new problems. But if everything goes well we should be in good shape to start construction either late this year or early next. I'll let you know how it all turns out tomorrow. ...

On a more positive note; we are going to the Trempealeau County Highway Department meeting on the 14th for hopefully the last big meeting regarding the bike sign project. We are hoping to get permission to use our own unique signs on the county back roads and township roads and be able to put them up on existing sign posts. If this all goes through next week it will be time to place the first order! Its been a lot more work than I initially thought it would be to put these signs up but it will all pay off in the end. I planning on signing a new loop from Whitehall to Pleasantville first, a nice 18.75 mile route that has two bluffs to climb, approximately 1100ft of elevation and it has one of the sweetest downhills in the whole county; Witt Hill Rd, a long sweeping turn into a total straight downhill drop with perfect visibility for about 3/4 mile into a T intersection. I hit 48.2 mph the other day on the trial run and it was awesome! You have to try it! Next we will be signing Loops 1 & 2 as that is the area most effected by the CAPX2020 lines, which is where the $30,000 grant to put the signs came from. It would be nice to get Loop #4 done in time for the Ashley Persuite of the Arts race on August 8th. I'll be posting more as I find out the details as to when the signs will be going up. ...

Boy this looks like a lot of fun! We're looking forward to creating some trails here in Trempealeau County! ...

Some fine riding at Levis Mound today!

How does one go about becoming part of your group. ...

Trempealeau Trails Bicycle Association changed their profile picture. ...

Very similar to what we're working on :) ...

How great is this, a sign especially designed for my yard, by the city of Stillwater no less!

The signage project is still moving forward. I'm still working on getting all of the i's dotted and the t's crossed as far as what signs can be placed where and what color they can be. I'll be meeting with the county again this week to get some final approvals and then I still have to meet with several townships to get the necessary permissions to use their existing sign posts before ordering all of the materials. I'm hoping in the next couple weeks to be able to make the first order for signs to be put up early this spring. Hopefully we can get 3 or 4 loops done this spring before the bicycling season really gets kicked off. ...

Walter is still missing and they have been out searching as best as they can in the weather. They are waiting for the pond to completely freeze over to allow them to drill holes in the ice and use side scanning sonar to locate targets. Walter was always fashionably late to everything so this all makes perfect sense if you know him :)

I will keep you posted as things happen. We are planning a memorial service the first weekend in June in Soldier, IA.
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