The Chichaqua Valley Trail is a converted rail-trail traveling twenty-six miles through several small Iowa communities, forested corridor, and open farmland. The concrete/ asphalt trail changes to crushed gravel north of Mingo. South of Berwick cyclists can connect with the High Trestle Trail, Neal Smith Trail or Heart of Iowa Nature Trail via Ankeny or pedal to Pleasant Hill and Altoona.
Fred and Doris* were going to spend the morning together. What would they do? If he could pick, Fred would spend his free time fishing, but he knows how much Doris likes riding her bicycle so he graciously offered to go on a ride.
To the Chichaqua Valley Trail they went. They began their ride at the fantastic trailhead in Bondurant. Right away Doris (because she's so very observant) noticed something new. It was sidewalk art by Chris Vance inside the picnic area. Doris was happy to discover something cool and new.
Wearing attire that would make "serious" cyclists cringe, the duo headed out on the trail. Fred asked Doris if she would like to ride a loop around Lake Petocka. He explained how this lake was stocked with trout in the spring. Doris then understood why he wanted to pedal around the lake. Fred's always scouting for the next fishing spot.
Their ride out-n-back to Valeria was a peaceful and pretty one. Doris teased Fred about his loud brakes. Fred teased Doris about the amount of random stuff stowed away in her handlebar bag.
Wooly caterpillars were spotted on the trail. Doris reminded Fred how folklore says the wider the middle brown section the milder winter will be. Fred was happy to see lots of wide middle brown sections.
East of the trail at NE 82nd street Fred and Doris noticed something they hadn't seen before. It was an deck overlook next to Santiego Creek. Doris was happy to discover something cool and old.
Returning to Bondurant, Doris asked Fred if he would like to get lunch at Brickstreet Street Market and Cafe. She explained they have the best tenderloin sandwich in Iowa. Fred then understood why she wanted to ride the Chichaqua. Doris is always scouting great places to eat along the bike trail.
After lunch it was time to head back home. Fred and Doris were tired. They were full. But, most of all they were happy. Happy to spend a morning together out on the bike trail.
*My nickname for my husband and I. We're "uncool" cyclists who embrace our "fredness". Learn more about what makes someone a Fred or Doris here.