Mission Dairy Queen

Day 3 of the ride started like most, with Justin being the first to rise and get the coffee going. Justin usually makes his delicious Swedish pancakes one morning of every CEM 900, but unfortunately this year in his haste to pack the RV he forgot to bring the proper ingredients. A quick decision was made for Kyle to grab some pancake mix while he was getting his bike fixed, and apparently the only pancake mix sold at Trader Joe’s is whole wheat fortified with protein. While this may seem like a better pancake to fill bellies for an endurance ride, Justin was more concerned about serving an inferior tasting product. Everyone complimented how good the syrup tasted, but not much about the pancakes other than “these will be better for us.”

It was already getting quite hot and muggy and being the final day of group one’s ride, everyone wanted to get going. All three riders departed together just before 9 am, leaving Matt to prepare the RV for group two’s arrival. The ride was an out and back from the campsite and was relatively uneventful, other than the fact the trail was considerably busier than the previous two days. We did stop at a lovely park in Peterson which had a covered picnic area and a few random well spigots sticking out the ground. We were going through massive amounts of water and our bottles needed a refill. Luckily the spigots were in working order, and we were able to fill with some pristine spring water from the aquifers of southeast Minnesota. We discussed stopping at the Aroma Pie shop in Whalen on our return leg, as the lettering on their building proclaims, “World Famous Pies.” Any proclamation like that needs to be put to committee review! Our discussion was short however, as our goal was to get back to the RV in time to pack up and stop at Dairy Queen on the way home for burgers and ice cream. A belly full of pie might throw off our desire for a Full Meal Deal. We decided the next time our ride takes us to the Root River Trail, we will be stopping for pie, hopefully ala mode!  

The riders finished their return leg riding together, and there was not the usual hooting and hollering upon completion, as we were all too hot! We just wanted cool beverages and watermelon. Matt had done a fine job getting the RV all set for the next group, and we were able to pack and depart the campground in relatively short order. To our amazement and disappointment, all three Dairy Queens in Rochester did not serve full grill items, so our wait time was extended until we could reach Byron, MN. What a fine example of a small-town Dairy Queen! The food was hot, and the Blizzards were served so hard it was difficult to even spoon it out. We met some lovely towns folks, who after hearing about our ride, told us about the wonderful pies that are served in Whalen. This was all the reassurance we needed to know we must stop next time for pie. To that we were back on the road, headed north to the Twin Cities and back to our busy lives.

Though difficult and strenuous at times, it was another fantastic and rewarding CEM 900, and we’re looking forward to next year. A special thanks to support driver Matt, who takes much better care of us than he really needs to, despite us riders constantly giving him a hard time. He always just laughs and says, “hey it’s for the kids.”