Day 4: Bad Salzschlirf to Bebra - Wertheim and Beyond - CycleBlaze

August 23, 2021

Day 4: Bad Salzschlirf to Bebra

No hurry today as rain is predicted for the whole day. It will be no use to get an early start. So I spend some time getting my journal up to date and we are finally ready at 10:00. Our stay in Haus Maria was interesting. Our host is running the hotel in the fourth generation. A picture on the wall in the dining room showed his great grandparents and his grandmother as a young girl. But the hotel has seen better days and I wonder what will happen when the present owner no longer keeps the place running. 

I have no hopes today of reaching our destination dry. While we load our bikes a fine but very wet drizzle starts. I have my rain jacket in easy reach and have it on before we start. False alarm, the drizzle stops and off with the rain jacket. But the day remains very grey and the wind, a headwind, picks up in the course of the afternoon.

The excellent rail-trail we are on crosses back and forth across the meandering Schlitz.

Beautiful countryside of eastern Hesse
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Rail trail
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The original railroad bridge
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We encounter obstacles, not unsurmountable
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We follow the Schlitz to the Fulda and are again in the Fulda Valley.

The Fulda
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Valley of the Fulda
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In Bad Hersfeld we leave our bike route and ride through the old town, almost all of which is barred to motorized traffic. Even on a cool and cloudy Monday, the streets are busy and the outdoor cafes full. We stop for a coffee, too, but prefer to sit inside. For the first time we are asked to show proof of vaccination when we enter the cafe and hand sanitizer is at the entrance. It is taken for granted that you wear a mask when indoors before you are at your table. The case numbers are climbing.

The City Hall in Bad Hersfeld
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Konrad Zuse, inventor of the first computer, was a citizen of Bad Hersfeld.
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The remaining 15 km from Bad Hersfeld to Bebra aren't very attractive. Our route follows a busy road on sidewalks as we leave the town and then we have several kilometers next to a highway, but on a separate bike path. Actually, I am impressed that they managed to carve out a bike path next to the highway and that you can get from A to B safely, even if it isn't always scenic.

There aren't many cars in this shot but actually the highway was very busy.
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Approaching Bebra, I keep wondering where is the town. First we pass some farm houses, and my app says 500 meters to the hotel. Then 250 meters and there are some commercial buildings, and then the hotel. It feels like we are in the middle of nowhere, but I think there isn't too much to Bebra. It's a major railroad convergence point and I imagine for this reason it was heavily bombed in the war, leaving little original substance.

On Mondays many restaurants are closed but the hotel can recommend an Indian-Italian resaurant just down the road. Janos explains to me what the two cuisines have in common - they both start with 'I'. We go for the Indian fare and it is very good.

Although the weather left something to be desired and we had some roads that weren't that attractive, all in all it was a good day on the bike. And it was indeed a miracle that in spite of the dire predictions, it never rained.

The view from our room - we are no longer on the Romantic Road
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Today's ride: 53 km (33 miles)
Total: 211 km (131 miles)

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Rachael AndersonGlad to hear you didn’t get rain. We also got lucky on the weather and even saw some sun.
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