July 31, 2003
Oak Leaf Trail, former Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee interurban line
Beginning Mileage: 1043.3
Ending Mileage: 1050.5
Total Miles Traveled: 7.2
Today was a much better day for bike riding. I even put in a full day at work! Marque from work came with me. We started out at his house (1), went north on Howell Avenue to Manitoba Street (Avenue?), and entered the Oak Leaf Trail at the Dead End (2).
The trail starts out at a very flat profile, until Drexel Avenue (3), where there was once a railroad overpass, but it had been taken out a few years back when Drexel Avenue was reconstructed. So, we had to go down a hill to cross Drexel Avenue, and then back uphill to continue on the trail. The same situation occurred at Forest Hill Avenue and Puetz Road. Between Forest Hill and Puetz (4), some of the fill must have been "recycled" elsewhere, as this segment has somewhat of a rolling profile.
South of Puetz Road, the trail crosses a subdivision road, then swings west and follows the Oak Creek Parkway to Shepard Avenue. Here, a short spur branches off to a middle or elementary school (5). At Shepard Avenue, the trail follows an older path down to near Hwy. 100, then proceeds east toward the Ryan Road dead-end and joins Ryan Road (6) for about a half-mile. The trail then rejoins the former North Shore right-of-way, but only for 1/4 mile before the trail dead-ends!