About the Ride
West of the Village of Wilton will be an uphill climb for the two miles until Tunnel #2. Along the way you will cross one local road and a stream that is a tributary of the Kickapoo River. If your visit finds you in this area furing a wet season, watch for the waterfall on the north side of the trail a few dozen yards east of Tunnel #2. This becomes a small trickle during dry weather, but during the wet season it is an interesting site to see. Tunnel #2 is the same length as Tunnel #1 but with much different construction. Massive stone blocks mark both entrances where the surrounding rock is set back more than in Tunnel #1. The entrances to Tunnel #2 are the most photographed location along the trail because of the stone block construction. Along the north side of the trail and very near the east entrance to Tunnel #2, you will see the remnants of a landslide that occurred a few years back during a heavy spring rainstorm. Local authorities and volunteers shoveled the fallen earth and debris then shored up the earth to prevent similar occurances from happening in the future. Be sure to stop and read the trail signs while at the entrances to Tuneel #2 to learn about the history of this area. Because the earth is softer in this location, stone blocks line the interior for its entire length to support the tunnel. A unique feature of this tunnel is the indentations along the sides to allow the swithcmen to take shelter if they were caught in the tunnel as a train approached. Because of humidity and moisture dripping through the stone blocks, this is a we tunnel. Although some water drips on your head, it mostly runs alongside the trail in two small streams in the tunnel. As you walk through Tunnel #2 it is hard to believe that Highway 71 crosses overhead. Likewise, when driving on Highway 71 you see no signs of the trail beneath you.
The 4 mile ride west of Tunnel #2 to the Village of Norwalk is very plesand and slightly downhill. Marked by thick woods along both sides of the trail and beautiful hills to look at in the distance, it is a pleaure to bicycle ride on this section of the Elroy Sparta Trail. The trail runs alongside and crosses over Moore Creek. The trail also crosses several small roads before intersecting Highway 71 one more time before the trail ends up in downtown Norwalk.
The Elroy Sparta Trail between the Village of Wilton and the Village of Norwalk is 6 miles long. This section of the trail may be bicycled either directions, there is only a 39 foot drop in total elevations when traveling eastbound. From Wilton west to Tunnel #2 is a short uphill and from Tunnel #2 to Norwalk is a long downhill.
-Excerpt from "Elroy Sparta Trail Guidebook" by Bob Sobie avaliable for purchase at any of the trail heads.