A snowy Mickelson Trail Trek in South Dakota

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How's this for a way to finish a three-day bike tour in mid-September?

Snow greeted the 435 cyclists on the final day of the 109-mile Mickelson Trail Trek last weekend, reminding them that the Black Hills of South Dakota can offer blustery weather while the rest of us are enjoying late summer temperatures.

This was the 9th year for the bicycle tour that uses the 114-mile George S. Mickelson Trail that runs between Edgemont and Deadwood in southwestern South Dakota.

A rail-to-trail project completed in 1998, the Mickelson Trail passes over 100 converted railroad bridges and through 4 tunnels on its route through the Black Hills. In 2004 it was a runner-up for Best Bike-Riding Trail in Midwest Living magazine.

Cyclists from 30 states and Canada participated in this year's bike tour, which was based in Custer for two nights and Rochford for the third.

John Papendick, sports editor of the Aberdeen American News, published his three-day diary of the Mickelson Trail Trek.  It sounds like he suffered on the hills, enjoyed the food at the rest stops, and endured the snow.

The 2007 Trail Trek — the 10th anniversary — is scheduled for Sept. 14-16. Online registration is available in November.

If you're planning to ride it alone, you'll need a trail pass. Also, here's a map for the Mickelson Trail.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.bikingbis.com/2006/09/22/a-snowy-mickelson-trail-trek-in-south-dakota/

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