Day 18 Strasbourg to Herbolzheim Wed 09/08/06
I thought it was going to be a bit of a nightmare getting out of Strasbourg, but despite the initial roadworks and diversions, it proved to be a doddle. I discovered a previously unknown to me European cycle path from Strasbourg to Offenbourg, which was a bit of a bonus, as it meant that i missed all the major roads and of course their traffic. I decided it would be too early to stop in Offenbourg, so i carried on instead to Herbolzheim. I like Germany so far. There are good cycle cum farm tracks which run parallel to the roads, its been flat, and oh, the shops don't shut for lunch! I cycled past lots of fields of corn on the cob again, and temptation became too much, so I had to lift one. And very nice it tasted too. After setting up camp, I popped down to the local supermarket, and the German equivalent of the Tour de France went by (Tour de Deutchsland??), so I stopped and watched with the waving locals, a few of whom I got talking too. So far, the Germans seem more open than the French. Also, every French house had shutters on the windows, and in Germany they don't.
Day 19 Herbolzheim to Freiburg Thursday 10/08/06
The day started off well, and I made good time towards Freiburg. It all began to go wrong on the outskirts of the city, however. The road that I needed to take suddenly decided to not allow bicycles on it, so I had to find cycle paths and quiet roads which weren't on any map that I had, all the while trying to keep track of where the main road was so that I was going in the right direction. At one point, I had no choice but to go onto the road, which made all the other motorists extremely happy, as it gave them an excuse to use their car and lorry horns. Then, just as I headed off onto a mission to find a quieter road running in roughly the same direction, the heavens opened. And I mean really opened. It was like somebody was pouring the sea out of the sky. I have possibly been wetter when swimming, but I doubt it. Drenched, and with no idea where I was or which direction I should go in, I found a river that had a cycle path, and decided to follow it… Well, it had to go somewhere, right? And bizarrely, it did. I found a signpost for a campsite, followed it, and set up camp in the lesser of twelve puddles. After consulting a couple of maps, it appeared I was in roughly the right direction, so no worries mate! On a separate note, I logged onto the internet and checked out www.warofempires.com as the current age was coming to an end. I logged in under my name of Darth Cupid (don't ask!), and boosted myself up to number 8 before I had to go. I'd passed my account over to one of my clan buddys to play for me, and hopefully he logged on later and got me even higher before the game finished. I really don't understand why I am still competitive over something I handed over to a friend 3 weeks earlier, but there we are. JUST LET IT GO!!!
Day 20 Freiburg to Donnaueschingen Friday 11/08/06
I think the words ‘super challenging' may be an understatement of the days cycling. I had to climb so much. So much. Again, there were sections of main road I couldn't travel on, and I had to find minor roads and pathways which weren't on my maps. And more climbing. My legs ached and I was tired. I booked into a hotel for the night, and then considered that as I'd just cycled over the backbone of the black forest mountains, I hadn't done too badly.
Day 21 Donnaueschingen to Hausen Im Tal Sat 12/08/06