A late start today due to me not waking up till twenty past eight, the hostel was as quiet as a morgue. I paid my €25 dues and started to load the bike up. When horrors I noticed a rear spoke had snapped 🙁 the wheel still span OK if a bit wobbly, I made a mental note to steer clear of tracks today.
The local panaderia made a delicious breakfast for €3 🙂 So I set of at 9.37 with a view of doing the 100 miles to Valencia, well I had 3,000 feet of vertical descent in my favour so I thought.
First mistake of the day was finding myself UNDER the bridge I was supposed to be crossing, a very fine bridge too. I started climbing on the deserted N234 road when suddenly the programmed Strava route told me to do an abrupt left turn down a track 🙁 and then down a steep 15% descent on loose gravel 🙁 this was then followed by 4 miles of track riding through a forest with only runners looking on bemused. An abrupt left turn up a very steep slope took me onto the old railway line. Followed by amazing viaducts, cuttings, embankments & tunnels. Must have cost a fortune to built in 1907! Even more amazing is a modern railway line runs parallel for most of the way with its own tunnels & cuttings.
All the time I was ascending upto 4,000 feet on rough ground equals slow going, suddenly Valencia seemed a long way away 🙁 I suspect using Strava for route creation is not sp good in areas of high MTB usage 🙁 The downhill stretch of the line is even more amazing with gradients unheard of in UK railways. Just before Masias I rejoined the N234 and proceeded to bomb down the hills at high pace 🙂
Just before Alger I left the N234, hopped across the tracks of the new railway and rejoined the Via Verde, (I could see a hill coming up). rejoining the N234 before Torres Torres.
It was starting to get late so I got booking.com to find the cheapest and most local place. They gave me the €25 a night Complejo Touristico La Pinada with its 25 metre outdoor pool etc. (water is about 20deg according to my white fingers after 8 lengths). Problem is there is no evening meal as such so it’s a Tortilla for me.
So the ‘easy’ descent turned into a 3,931 feet of ascent as well 🙁 and 83.7 miles according to Strava
The pictures on dropbox here
My heartrate is reaching new highs: