Local Man Turns Author
Dave Keene, an avid motorcycle rider, never thought of himself as an author.
That changed two years ago.
“We had just gotten back from one of our rides, and someone said, ‘With all the back roads you travel, you should write a book about all the trips you do.’”
Those trips are now chronicled in a pocket-sized book “Crusin’ the Back Roads — Motorcycling in Wisconsin.”
The book outlines 12 motorcycle tours in west central and southwestern Wisconsin. All the routes can easily be traversed in a day with plenty of time to stop for the scenery, landmarks, restaurants, cheese factories and veterans memorials that Keene identifies.
The subject matter comes naturally to Keene, who lives in rural Warrens.
“I’ve been motorcycling for 35 years,” Keene said. “As soon as I got my license, I was on a motorcycle.”
Writing and researching the book took a considerable amount of work. He took notes using paper and pencil and later with a tape recorder. When he got home from a trip, he mapped it out.
“I had to make sure all my turns were right, figure out the mileage and estimate the times,” he said. “I’d run into gravel roads and have to re-route the maps.”
The book was published by his wife Jolene’s cousin, Bill Oakes, who owns Eagle Wing Publishing in Warrens. It was printed by Omnipress in Madison.
“It was super easy to talk to Bill,” Keene said. “Bill was so proactive and so positive about let’s go ahead and write it.”
Keene took most of the photos. Kim Pederson took the cover photo, and Keene’s daughter, Kelly Roose, took the back cover photo.
Keene’s favorite route is “The Magnificent Miles,” a 120-mile tour that takes riders to the Mississippi River and through the “Mindoro Cut”.
“You get a little bit of everything on that one,” he said.
His routes also send riders to the High Ground Veterans Memorial Park near Neillsville and the World War II Memorial in Arcadia. Fifty cents from each book sold is donated to veterans memorial projects.
Among his restaurant stops are The Blue Goose and Rockton Bar, both in Vernon County.
“I’m looking for mom and pop restaurants where the food is good and the people are friendly,” he said.
Keene has only scratched the surface of what’s to see in western Wisconsin. In the introduction, Keene tells readers to “keep an eye out for: Cruisin’ the Back Roads 2.”
“It was a great experience,” he said. “It was a fun job. I was on a motorcycle seeing beautiful scenery and meeting some great people.”
At a glance:
Book: Cruisin’ the Back Roads — Motocycling in Wisconsin
Author: Dave Keene
Outlets: CynCity, Tomah; Cranberry Country Mall, Tomah; Book Bog, Tomah; Berry Vine, Warrens; Warrens Mall, Warrens; Wisconsin Cranberry Discovery Center, Warrens; Rex Moseley's Fruit and Veg. Farm, Warrens; The Blue Goose, La Farge: The Rockton Bar, Rockton; Wild Things, Rockton; Old Country Cheese Factory, Cashton.
Original Link: http://lacrossetribune.com/tomahjournal/news/local/article_00f5f60e-7152-11e0-9568-001cc4c002e0.html