Tuesday, May 31, 2011
What The? May 30 2011
It was totally amazing to wake up this morning and look out the window and see the Mont Cassino. To see such a famous sight from your hotel window in the morning was really something else.
We were to have a group ride out of town as it was pretty confusing but some how it never happened. I stood around until well after the group ride was to leave and was the only one left so I pulled the plug and left.
A few Kms out of town I came up on the a small group of riders who had left earlier contemplating which way to go so I joined them in the decision to ride up the busy road. I called it the freeway but was corrected. It was just a busy road. About 15 kms up the road we pulled off the busy road into a little town called Belmonte Castello. The road was a shady lane with no cars and beautiful smooth pavement, but the road was over 11% grade. The busy road was less than 3%.
A few kms up the road we pulled into an amazing village where there was a farmers market. The town center was probably over a 1000 years old. I bought this huge bagel which had to be 10 inches across for a Euro. I shared it with the three riders I was with. Walking through the town center was just amazing.
I was riding with four other riders and we were having a lot of fun cruising along this country lane. It was a real pleasure not having cars honking their horns at you. There was no diesel buses passing you and blowing black diesel exhaust in your face. The pavement was the smoothest we have ridden on this tour. The road totally tree lined so we were in the shade most of the time. There were lots of curves and gentle rolling hills. The tail wind was a total bonus. The scenery was postcard perfect. All I can say is “WHAT THE??”
After lunch we continued down the road to a town called Capistrello. Our bike computers were off from the mornings missed road so we were not sure of where we were and I got talked into riding up this huge hill. It was about 7 kms up a 6% grade. At the top it was obvious we were in the wrong place and so we rode back down. This little misadventure cost us about 90 minutes. `
Back on the right road we still had one major climb to complete, so we found a fountain, filled our bottles and were back on the road. We rolled in close to last. However we didn’t miss supper which was great. It was my favourite – steak.
Tomorrow is Rome. I cannot believe that I am riding my bike into Rome. But then “All roads lead to Rome”