Friday, 18 May 2012

19 May Stage 37 Izmir - Selcuk

Dep 9.45    Arr  3.30    Dist  80.6 km      Total  3717.7 km

I opened the blinds to a nice sunny morning with not a cloud in view so the cape was relegated to the bottom of the bag. I had a look at the route and noticed that Kusadasi was actually a bit out of the way and I could save myself a bit of time by finding somewhere on or nearer to the main road. That place was Selcuk which is quite small but the internet showed any number of cheap guest houses there so that became the new plan. I didn't know if breakfast was included but wasn't really bothered. I just wanted to get going. I had had a serious look at the way out of Izmir and it wasn't going to be easy. Ironically, it was much the same as the dolmus ride I had had yesterday which was a stroke of luck in a way but a real nuisance in another way because of the busy nature of the roads.

I stuck to the inside lane and used the footpath whenever I could although it was very uneven and very slow. Safety was all important and I still had a couple of near-ish misses as cars and vans went across me as they turned off the main road. I had read the route quite well though and, after an hour and a half of nervous riding, I made it out of this sprawling and very busy city into the country and a nice smooth wide hard shoulder. Progress was steady. I called at a petrol station and got some of these fantastic Turkish biscuits for breakfast. I ate a packet straight away and placed the other packet opened in the bar bag for my ten minute treat which reduced to every 5 minutes and then less for some unknown reason. The small towns rolled by and I was 20km or so from Selcuk when it clouded over and the wind got up. I got a bit wet and the last hour was slow progress but I arrived in the town and slowed down looking for a place to stay as I neared the centre. As I crawled along a car stopped in front of me and a man stepped out and asked 'Are you looking for a nice place to stay?' I said I was and he proceeded to tell me, in perfect English, about his place which was 600m back and a bit off the road. It sounded right and I followed him there - and I am here now actually, where I am writing this chapter in the sunshine of his garden while waiting for the FIG gang to contact me for my latest guest appearance. I'm having a Turkish tea but will soon be having a beer or two and Falcus will be cooking me a fish with the trimmings as I watch the Championship play-off and then the Champions League final in his bar if I can stay awake long enough. Nothing yet from Terry and the FIG fundraising event.

Today's track


  1. Hi Tom I was thinking which route you intend to take down from Mugla? The main road goes down a very steep cliff with hair pin bends but there is an alternative. You will see a left hand turn to Ula, just on the outskirts of Mugla, and that takes you down a back road to the coast road. Plus Ula is a time warp place that has most bicycles per head of population in the whole country - many of them vintage monsters I'm sure you would enjoy seeing. The road from Ula meets main road to Fethiye before Koycegiz. Pat

  2. Thanks for that Pat

    I will certainly be looking at the route on my day off in Mugla.

    All the best


  3. Hi Tom,
    Hayton Associates have been avidly tracking your progress. We bet you have lots more stories to tell. Nearly sleeping in your own bed, what a luxury. Will you meeting up with the lads for a few beers and getting the guitar out for a few songs, have you thought about adding the push bike song to the set list! By the time you get back we may have moved, yes the for sale sign is up.
    Will catch up soon.

    Ian & Marie