Thursday, 19 April 2012

19 April. Stage 10 Lowenstein - Aalen

Dep 8.50 Arr. 18.00 Dist 95.1 km. Total. 1054 km

I woke up at 6.20 feeling ok but for some reason I turned over and slept again till 8.10. I had breakfast in bed, ie, tent, some kind of oaty type muesli with milk and P&O sugar, quite nice actually. I was a bit apprehensive about the day's ride with no target and in unchartered territory.

I went to reception to hand back my wristband and asked the lady if she had a map of the area. A man appeared and gave me a map with all the local cycle routes on. When I told him my destination he looked at me like most people have done so far, a mixture of disbelief and what looks to me like admiration but is probably something else. He then suggested Aalen. He said it was quite a tough route but all other ways would be as well and this was quite direct. He said he does it himself in 8 or 9 hrs and he looked quite fit. which was ominous to say the least.

The way out of Lowenstein was uphill for about 5km which is a similar length of climb to Saddleworth but not as steep. Thankfully, the rest was generally flat, following a river valley. The road was quiet but occasionally a huge articulated lorry would come along. There were another three nasty climbs and the customary headwind now and then which wasn't strong but I felt it. I got to a busier road and made decent progress as I got closer to Aalen. The kindle informed me there was a hostel in Aalen but it was a remote area and stuff was very slow coming through. Also, my phone was very low on power. I eventually found the place and here I am now, nearly caught up again, blogging on my phone, which isn't easy. I've had my tea which was a bit weird but pleasant and filling.

It was quite a difficult day and I was very tired at times. I stopped and rested 4 or 5 times and seemed to be thirsty all the time and that's without beer last night! The destination tomorrow is Neuburg an der Donau so then I will meet another great river which will then be my companion for most of the way to Turkey.

Today's Route

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