The CowaLUNGa routes have been expertly designed using safe, scenic roads with limited traffic. You’ll experience just the right combination of hills and flats to challenge the new rider and keep the experienced cyclist engaged. It’s the view from your saddle that makes the tour so enjoyable. From farms and lakes to small country towns, there is plenty to see. Ride at your own pace, enjoy the tastes of Wisconsin (lunch each day is on your own), and keep an eye out for those cows! Note: route is subject to change if road work or any conditions require a slight reroute.
All Cow riders depart as a mass start at 9:00 AM on Day 1 from the Gurnee Mills parking lot in Gurnee, Illinois, conveniently located just off I-94 — approximately 40 miles north of Chicago. An earlier start time is not feasible as it will not align with rest stop locations and restaurant schedule availability.
*New in 2023* Join us beginning on Day 2 for a 100-mile century ride departing from Conference Point Center in William’s Bay, Wisconsin. Riders depart as a mass start at 8:00 AM.
Please note that CowaLUNGa riders are required to wear helmets at all times on their bikes. NO HELMET, NO RIDE.
All ride options include:
- Fully supported route (bike, SAG, medical)
- Registration fee and small fundraising requirement (No registration fee for children 4 and under!)
- Event shirt
- Finisher’s medal
- Event photographer and digital photo access
- Free parking at the start line
- Bus ride for you and transportation for your bike back to the start line. If you would not like to wait for the bus, you are welcome to provide your own transportation and leave after check-in at the finish line.
- One, two, and three day riders are invited to bring their personal bag for transport on the gear truck.
GURNEE, ILLINOIS TO BRISTOL, WISCONSIN
Saturday, July 29, 2023 | 9:00 a.m. start – 12:00 p.m. return (approximately)
This is the perfect ride option if you want to be part of CowaLUNGa but are looking for a shorter distance. It’s also a great way to get the entire family involved! See our Child Rider Policy for more information.
Check-in begins at 7:00 a.m. in the Gurnee Mills parking lot H. Restrooms are available and you can register your vehicle for free parking for the duration of your ride. Bring your cheering section – family and friends are welcome. After a short program and send-off, all riders depart for Wisconsin at 9:00 a.m. as a mass start. Spectators can enjoy shopping at Gurnee Mills following the send-off.
Snacks and drinks are available at the finish line in Bristol. A bus for you and transportation for your bike will arrive back at Gurnee Mills at approximately 12:00 PM.
1 Day – 65 Miles
GURNEE, ILLINOIS TO WILLIAM’S BAY, WISCONSIN
Saturday, July 29, 2023 | 9:00 a.m. start – 8:00 p.m. return (approximately)
Cycle approximately 65 miles from Gurnee Mills through fully-supported rest stops in Bristol, Hebron, and into Conference Point Center, located in William’s Bay outside of Lake Geneva.
Check-in begins at 7:00 a.m. in Gurnee Mills Parking Lot H. Indoor restrooms are available, and you can register your vehicle for free parking for the duration of your ride. Bring your cheer section – family and friends are welcome! After a short program and send-off, all riders depart for Wisconsin at 9:00 a.m. as a mass start. Spectators can enjoy shopping at Gurnee Mills following the send-off.
Morning and afternoon rest stops with food and drink are available. Lunch is on your own at one of many recommended restaurants. Once you arrive at Conference Point, you can check-in and turn in your bike to be loaded, then hit the showers, grab a snack, or visit the on-site Ice Cream Shoppe. Dinner will be available from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. and after the Cow Gathering (a short program including the day’s highlights and a medal ceremony), you’ll board the bus to return to Gurnee Mills. Riders are invited to bring their personal bag for transport onto the gear truck.
2 Day – 130 Miles
GURNEE, ILLINOIS TO WHITEWATER, WISCONSIN
Saturday, July 29, 2023, 9:00 a.m. start – Sunday, July 30, 2023, 8:30 p.m. return (approximately)
After completing the first day ride (outlined above), dinner is available 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. and is followed by the Cow Gathering, a short program with the day’s highlights and a medal ceremony for riders who are departing for home. Before and after, you’ll have time to take a swim in William’s Bay, relax with other riders, enjoy board games, grab a snack from the on-site Ice Cream Shoppe, or even make the short walk to town if you’d like to enjoy a little night life. An evening option is to come together to enjoy a fireside gathering before bed. Sleep in beautiful lakeside cabins, such as Magill Hall, Retreat, Delap Lodge and others. Cabins are preassigned based on registration date, team size and status of Lung Health Champion. Teams are assigned to be in the same cabin. Cabins with a/c are assigned first.
Get back in the saddle! On your second day, breakfast is available. The route opens at 6:45 a.m. and covers approximately 65 miles (or 100 miles if you decide to take the Century Ride), through areas of the Kettle Moraine State Forest and rest stops in the town of Lyons and at Avant Cycle Café, formerly the LaGrange General Store. Lunch is on your own again and you’ll pedal onto the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater’s campus to end the day. Check-in is required at each day’s finish line, and you must be off the route by dinner time. The Day Two dinner is a highlight, featuring a short program and recognitions.
Thank you to the Whitewater Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Council for supporting CowaLUNGa and welcoming us to their city. Check out their Bicyclist’s Guide to Whitewater!
3 Day – 190 Miles
GURNEE, ILLINOIS TO HUBERTUS, WISCONSIN
Saturday, July 29, 2023, 9:00 a.m. start – Monday, July 31, 2023, 7:00 p.m. return (approximately)
Read 1 Day and 2 Day route descriptions above. In Whitewater on day two, spend the afternoon at the pool or on a massage table and enjoy a variety of activities after dinner including pool tables, ping pong, and bowling in the air-conditioned Rec Center. Share rider stories and enjoy an adult beverage at the late-night pizza party.
Overnight accommodations for night two are provided in the newly constructed air-conditioned dorm building on campus.
The third day’s route opens at 7:15 a.m. on Monday and is approximately 60 miles. In addition to two of the tour’s most challenging hills, you’ll want to stop in to visit a rider favorite, the Wholly Cow Frozen Custard shop in Delafield, and rest stops outside Ottawa and Stone Bank. Lunch is on your own. You’ll complete your successful CowaLUNGa journey riding into Camp Minikani in Hubertus, Wisconsin, where you can relax, buy raffle tickets and Cow souvenir items, cheer on other riders as they cross the finish line, and enjoy the celebration meal before departing for home.