September 11, 2019: Prague to Kamenice - Praha to Wien Greenway Tour (Tour 19) - 2019 🇨🇿 🇦🇹 - CycleBlaze

September 11, 2019

September 11, 2019: Prague to Kamenice

Hotel: Hotel Valnovka, €48

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Though tired in the morning, my fear of stomach issues from last night had passed so I was really relieved that I would be able to ride today. I had checked and there are trains that follow the route but that isn't why I'm here.

We snacked on our goodies then carried our bikes and gear down the stairs shortly after 7 am. The morning was crisp and clear and the city was starting to come awake. The bikes were loaded, we dropped the keys at the hotel next door, then let the gps do its work. In a roundabout kind of way it got us to the road along the river, so there we were cycling past the Charles Bridge. Cool or what?

Like we did the last time, we stayed on the sidewalk, which is what other cyclists were also doing so I figure the path is a dual sidewalk and bike path. The cobblestones were fairly bumpy so we took our time and kept a decent pace. I really like the route along the river. For a while you can see Prague Castle then the city becomes less touristic though still interesting. There were quite a few cyclists on their way into the city, most of whom were on mountain bikes. We had to keep our wits about us or risk running into other cyclists.

After about eight km our route turned away from the river and headed up and inland. Much of the route followed municipal parkland and was truly really beautiful. I couldn't believe we were still in the city. On numerous occasions I thought we must have been out of the city but then we would emerge from thick forests into residential areas with huge complexes of apartment blocks holding, I'm sure, thousands of people in each one.

I had to really keep my eye on the gps becuse the route turned quite often as it meandered along local paths gradually away from the city. It must have taken about two hours for us to finally clear the city. Now we were into rolling pastoral land along quiet country roads that were usually lined on both sides with maple and apple trees. There was traffic, but usually the roads were quiet. I think that this was planned - cycle routes were set up to use roads not used that much. Every now and then we would be brought back to reality when the route would cross over a freeway clogged with fast moving cars. I preferred our route. The other interesting part of the routing is that quite often the towns were missed. Gradually we went through some towns. These towns had some old buildings but for the most part they seemed to be towns that have exploded as people from the city commute in to work. This is the curse of humanity these days. Too many people everywhere.

A few times we stopped to pick apples and pears from the roadside trees but generally just kept pedaling along at a steady pace so as not to strain my back, knees or legs. This approach seemed to work and I had no problems as I geared up and down the hills. At one point MA's bike was giving her squeak-grief so I backtracked about a km downhill to a bike shop for some lubricant to try to stop the incessant squeaking in her saddle. Plus, earlier on, MAs chain broke a second time (the first time was on a ride back home during the summer) so I picked up a couple more spare chain links since I used the only one I had.

The last ten to fifteen km were reminiscent of the cycling four years ago in an area just west of here by about 20 km. It was rather hilly. Thankfully, it was not as difficult as around Slapy, but still there were some fairly long climbs. I must have done enough training in advance, though. I geared down and was slow, but I hardly had to walk up any of the hills.

As we approached Kamenice, I was starting to get tired and was slowing down. The last few km were uphill which was a bit disheartening, but finally, there was our hotel at the top of a hill. And it looked nice. I came ahead in and the owner told me to bring the bikes right into the room - always a relief when I know they will be safe with me. The elevator made bringing them up to the second floor a breeze, and then I went to the on-premises restaurant for a beer as I journalized.

A short while later we went for lunch of chicken/veggies/fries and beef/rice/gravy. It was ok but that's about all.

Both zonked, the day ended around 5:30 pm! That is even early for me!

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Today's ride: 45 km (28 miles)
Total: 61 km (38 miles)

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