Ponferrada - Vuelta a Iberia - CycleBlaze

September 30, 2019

Ponferrada

Taking stock (continued)

Unfortunately, we took stock too soon.  There’s more.

         6.  And on day fourteen, we lost one of our Garmin devices.

This one is the worst of the lot, and completely baffling.  We know that we had both of the, last night, because Rachael loaded tomorrow’s planned day ride from Ponferrada onto them at our hotel in Vigo.  We didn’t use them for navigation today on our way to the train, but it was gone when we arrived in Ponferrada.  So, it was left in the hotel (we checked and they didn’t find it but will look again); or it fell out of a bag somehow between the two hotels - in a cafe, on the train?  Nothing makes sense.

It could be anywhere, so if you see us please let us know.  It looks like this:

If you’re traveling in NW Spain, please keep an eye out for our little friend. We’d like him back.
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In the meantime, one of us will use the other device, and one of us will use a phone.  We’re experimenting with using the RideWithGPS app on the phone, and will see if we can find a handlebar mount for it at a store here.  Most people don’t use such a heavy-handed approach to navigation anyway, so on the bright side this forces us into trying something new.

Am I forgetting anything?  Oh, yes.  There’s this:

         7.  Rachael thinks she’s getting a sore throat.

On to Castilla y Leon

But other than that, things are going great!  Our plan is working well, and at the end of the day we’re in Astorga, having dinner at our restaurant’s hotel in Ponferrada.its on the margin of a beautiful small square facing the baroque 17th century town hall:

Astorga’s town hall. We’ll get a better look in the morning, if I don’t lose my camera before then.
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It’s a beautiful evening, and we feel immediately at home here.  With this evening’s balmy conditions, the square feels like it could be late fall someplace in southern France.  The weather looks perfect in the coming days - sunny, in the high sixties - and we can look forward to some fine rides as long as our health permits.

Getting here was easy.  Our train didn’t depart until 2:35; so in the morning Rachael went for a walk while I stayed in the room until checkout; and then moved on to the hotel’s cafeteria to catch up on the blog, until it closed for midday break at 1; and then moved back to the hotel lobby until Rachael returned and we biked over to the train station.

So, lots of possibilities here: our GPS could be in our hotel room; the hotel’s cafeteria, lobby, or garage; the train station cafeteria; or on the train.

On the train! I don’t see the GPS here though. Do you?
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Leaving green Galicia. The clouds disappeared soon after leaving the coast.
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In Castillo y Leon. It definitely feels like we’ve entered a different region of Spain. More arid, rugged, different architecture, more scarcely populated.
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In the Ponferrada station watching our train move on, possibly with our GPS INSIDE.
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We arrive in Ponferrada at a bit before 8 PM, after a five hour ride involving I believe 39 stops along the way.  It’s only a half mile from our hotel, the Hotel Aroi Bierzo Plaza; but it takes us about a half hour to get there because we first navigate to the Hotel Aroi Ponferrada, having selected the wrong hotel from the list.  On finding we were not expected there, we navigated to the correct hotel this time, but via the wrong mode - walking, which annoyingly took us up a series of steep cobblestone streets ending in a thankfully short staircase.

Whatever.  We’re here, celebrating our arrival in a new province over a fine meal corned with chestnut tiramisu.

Approaching our hotel through the back door. Next time we’ll remember to put our GPS setting on biking rather than walking mode.
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Rachael’s morning constitutional

Lastly, since Rachael’s morning walk in Vigo was the only real activity today, let’s look at the photos she brought back.  As usual I’m not captioning them because I don’t know what she went.  Maybe she’ll come along and fill in the blanks some day.  Or not.  No pressure, Rocky.

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Steve Miller/GrampiesShe took this one for the trees, of course.
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Steve Miller/GrampiesActually, she did. She claims not to have noticed these two or the woman I cropped out. Or so she says.
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2 months ago
Rachael AndersonTo Steve Miller/GrampiesYou bet! I was sorry to see the runners get in the way.
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2 months ago
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Jen GrumbySorry about the GPS, camera, and rain jacket!

But so great that the end-point hotel came through and offered to reimburse the shipping charges.

Hope Rachael's sore throat does not turn into a cold .. here's to better days ahead!
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Jen GrumbyIsn’t that something? It’s the GPS that really perplexes us. We don’t have a clue on that one. We’re doing fine though. Rachael found a good coat for an amazing 8 euros. I have an extra camera anyway; and we found a handlebar mount for my cell phone for 10 euros, so we’re functional and not out much in the short run. And, we are both doing passable today and had a great loop ride out of Ponferrada. So we’re fine - I’m just a whiner.
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2 months ago
Suzanne GibsonGreat pics, Rachael. No need for captions, good pictures speak for themselves.
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2 months ago
Rachael AndersonTo Suzanne GibsonThanks! I really appreciate your support.
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2 months ago
Gregory GarceauIrony: When the device that is designed to keep you from getting lost gets lost itself.
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Gregory GarceauYuk. Thanks for helping us to see the bright side in this.
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2 months ago
Ron SuchanekThat damn Garmin clearly got bad advice from the GBO and took flight at the first opportunity. You just can't trust accessories these days.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Ron SuchanekThe GBO! Oh, the poor little guy. I put him on airplane mode for the flight to keep him silent, and then forgot about him. He’s probably been silently screaming in frustration for a week.
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1 month ago