Friday, July 4, 2008

Over Hill and Dale

Day 33 Resita to Băile Herculane

Breakfast in the hotel Semenic wasn’t the gourmet delight of other hotels, but John our cook brought out the Muscili and we filled up and were off. The ride started with a 25 km hill climb into the Carpathian Mountains, which as you know was home to Count Dracula. Being early morning he wasn’t out. However the scenery was out in full force. One minute there would breath taking vistas, the next into thick forests with a lovely green canopy over the road.

I was glad we had an early start (7:00 Am) as it was 17 C when we started with a totally cloudless day. The road was great and there were only a few rough patches where they were doing road work. Riding steadily for three hours we had covered 45 km and were at lunch. We passed though only one town, Anina, it was the only place where I have seen any communist symbols. The sign to the town was beautifully cared for and displayed on it was the crossed hammers.

After lunch was all down hill and Jim, Joco and I cruised the 40 kms to a special snack break that was set up for us. It was a great spread of fresh fruit. There seems to be a lot of locally grown fresh fruit in the area, which is very in-expensive. We wolfed it down as the temperature was now in the 30’s C.

The last 43 kms to our hotel was more down hill except for the “short cut”. The “short cut” was this local road which cut about 10 km off the route. It was 2 kms up this impossibly steep hill and 2 kms down. The kicker however is that it was a poured concrete road that was so broken up and caved in that riding was a major challenge. On the down hill there was a section, which was just concrete rubble, so Jim and I walked it.

Less than one km from the hotel Jim picked up a wire in his tire and got a flat. So rather than change it in the sweltering heat we pumped it up and Jim rode in. Tomorrow is rest day so Jim can fix his tire. I am going to look for water bottle cages. The rough roads have broken two of my three cages.

I need to get out and do a run as I am going to wind up at home without doing any running. I will have to worry about that some other time as I am NOT setting the alarm.

I have been on some pretty rides before, however at the moment I just can’t think when. It was a totally wonderful 128 kms.

Thanks for your visit to my blog and thanks your thoughts.



Bob Wemer said...

Hi Terry,

Sounds like your tour is full of excitement - both good and bad, I didn't hear of anyone losing their billfold on our tour but we did have people injured. I believe that there were 16 hospital admittances all together with most of them being from the food poisoning. At the wind turbine site near Palm Springs, the crosswinds threw one bike and rider over his wife's crashing them both. They had to drop out of the tour.

I think that the winds were the hardest part of our tour this year. Out West, we had horrendous head and cross winds day after day. However, the last week of the East was almost all light tailwinds which was a great relief.

Kim and I went for a 25 miles tandem ride yesterday morning. My bike arrived home (by UPS) about noon so I'm putting it back together now.

I'm enjoying your experiences.

Best Wishes,

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear the Count didn't get you! Water bottle cages support a fair bit of weight when the water bottles are full; almost a kilogram, so on rough roads, I guess they really get pounded.

Thanks for the blog.

Ken C.