Fabulous day of riding. Cross wind but sometimes behind on super flat tar cycle path along the river.
First 20ks through winelands and winding through cute villages. Mistook Ma for a rubbish bin. Sounds bad but there were a lot of twisty bits through villages and lost my follower . I look back all the time, but cos bike wobbles a lot I just look for huge yellow bag on back of her bike. Unfortunately the rubbish collection was that day and all bins for general rubbish are yellow. Thought one was Ma. Oops.
Ma getting very strong and had the cheek to pass me a few times.
We have been riding 14 or 15 kph but today was 17 kph. 75 k total to Mannheim.
Along the route today we passed a young couple of our age. She was on an e bike and he on high spec MTB. After 1km they put on electric turbocharger and passed us again. Did not want to be second to an Engelsman apparently.
Arrived in big city Mannheim. Imagine riding from Meyersdal to Randburg. Rode through big city ( I enjoy ) and suddenly ride single track through forest. Ma ran low on sugar and said we will never find a campsite here. But we did and are camped on Rhine.
Camp is run by another Commandant. She took us to our plek and said we must put tent to left of tree. My logic said we rest bikes to right of tree so we have space for rent erection. WRONG! Do not put bikes there, put to left of tree. OK my Commandant.
Hung washing on fence in retaliation .
Onwards to the source.
The last few days of riding have varied in weather from semi hot to cold and windy. Mostly not too bad for riding. The approach into Strasbourg was super duper on tarred, smooth forest cycle paths. See pic.
Ma needed a day or two off, getting crotchety, but v strong and keeps on trucking.
Overdosed on museums and restaurants. Last night was best food of trip in little quiet bar in a backstreet. Duck for Ma and lamb shank for me. Quite reasonable too. If we don’t stay in hotels, we get away with around Euro40 per day for camping food beer wine and sundry. Was expecting quite a bit more.
Tomorrow we leave Strasbourg and try and get through France as quick as possible. Hope to be in Switzerland in two days and the dreaded Alps to climb. Doubt whether we can do 70 k per day there. We shall see.
Currently resting in hotel emailing and watching Boule/Petanque on TV. Very exciting, will have to take extra blood pressure tabs as the game is nail-biting stuff. Ha ha! Some sports should be played and not watched.
Had two fabulous riding days with two vest weather and lovely sunshine. Mostly followed the old Rhine/Rhine canal along the Maginot line ( world war one ). Lots of pill boxes still there ( machine gun bunkers ).
Last night was quiet as Liverpool lost and all our campsite buddies were legless then fell asleep.
The heavens opened last night but our little orange house is looking after us well. Just a bitch packing a wet tent in the morning. Within one km we were in Switzerland, Basel and the Dutch and German cycle path signs dissolved to nothing. Got lost in Basel and lost half an hour getting back on track. After that it got worse and we lost track several times. Probably cost us an hour or two but rain was light and the sun came out as we put up tent in Waldshut, back in Germany.
France was also not great with cycle signs. I actually think they have a secret bunker in Paris where they watch video feed of all the cycle paths. When they spot an Englishman they remotely turn signs around.
Still we are making great progress and are about six or seven days ahead of plan. Just where I planned to be.
The hills started today and we had a couple of walkies, but to me it is a relief, the endless slight flat incline is a bit mind numbing. No wonder every one else does the down run. Still not seen one other rider going uphill!
Tomorrow we do a bit more Germany then back into Switzerland. 75 ks today but maybe only 60 tomorrow. Depends on Swiss cycle signs.