The Trailhead Inn Resort in Preston is recommended. Clean and sufficiently appointed. We didn't get in until 22:00, missing the grass track race and registration. Even the hotel office was closed and our key was in a note taped to the room door.
Decent breakfast but nothing special, after which we lost track of time a bit and I had to urge the Handy to trim his toenails later and omygawd, we gotta be to Spring valley in about 20 minutes to check in! We rolled into our parking spot on the edge of town with maybe 7 minutes to spare, so I grabbed our waivers, left Handy at the car to get ready, and rolled into town to get our numbers. As I laid my hand on the door of the community center, the megaphone dude barked:
"One minute to registration closing! One minute left!"
I think I got the last pair of numbers before the start.
Handy and I worked our way up at the front, sang Happy Birthday with the crowd, and we were off.
He hung on my wheel all day, frequently asking me to check pace. In retrospect, maybe that wasn't such a bad thing. This was the Almanzo where the horses ran with the riders, but we missed that.
It was Trout Festival back in Preston.
The water crossing was great.
We had fun.
Dinner at a decent pizza place in Fountain (the Village Square of Fountain) with good pie after. Quick tour of the former jail behind the butcher shop now a slaughterhouse. Then the drive home.
I drove to the Wisco border, and we switched drivers and I got coffee at a c-store in LaCrosse. Handy drove to Castle Rock where we switched again, which was good because he was out right after we got underway. The Prius had a CD player, but the only disk I could find was a badly scratched Rush album.
So we got home on caffeine, Limelight, Tom Sawyer, about half of Red Barchetta that ended in garble and Handy's occasional half-awake attempts at conversation. We made it, though I wouldn't say I was perky. Pulled into my driveway just after midnight and I managed to stay awake through my daughter's dance recital the next day. So, success.
Pictures over that-away.