On The Left: Day 22 - Bamlach to Walshut - Get It While It Lasts... A Big Loop Through Europe 2017 - CycleBlaze

August 29, 2017

On The Left: Day 22 - Bamlach to Walshut

We were back in familiar territory for most of today, both from a recent perspective and historically.

When we checked out the map this morning we realized that we were just across the Rhine from Seirentz, the lovely town with the Auberge we stayed at five nights ago. Also, today’s ride, and the next two or three days would be a bit of a retrace of part of our 2013 Rhine source to sea trip.

Back then we rode the Swiss and French side of the river and missed most of the German side (where it’s shared). We decided to expand our horizons on this trip and ride on the left side through Germany!
Once again we got an early start and were pedaling away in the cool early morning. We also discovered that the little store at the campground was open early and even had chocolate milk! Yeah!

It was perfect riding in the morning. Beautiful paths along the Rhine down into Basel. Given that the German part of Basel is quite industrial it was surprisingly pleasant cycling. They do a great job of keeping industrial sites contained, clean and well maintained.

Once through Basel we were riding along the relatively narrow and steep banked Rhine dotted with classic looking German and Swiss towns on either side of the river.

Both K and I remarked that this was much more picturesque and dramatic river scenery (for us at least) than the Loire. At several points the river became quite narrow, and fast flowing, with beautiful old bridges (some classic wood covered) connecting the Swiss and German towns on either side. We rode over most of them, just to touch down in Switzerland, because we could.

Not much to add about today. Bike tourer numbers are back on the upswing as we are getting the Rhine folks now. It got pretty hot again in the afternoon but we had most of our mileage behind us by then.

We pulled into a nice campground in Waldshut in the late afternoon and got set up and cleaned up. Sounds perfect, but not quite … campground rant coming … German campgrounds seem to following the NA trend of ‘pay for everything’. The camp fee wasn’t bad, but not cheap (around 18 euro’s), but you had to pay a Euro for a 4 minute shower (the shower / toilet facilities were impeccable though). You also had to pay for internet! This is a first world rant, and somewhat hypocritical, but it really irks me to have to pay for that at your ‘accommodation’. As regular readers will have picked up, K and I don’t have a problem dropping 100 + Euro’s on a really good meal, but 3 euro’s for internet …. That’s where I draw the line!

Speaking of dinner, the town of Waldshut is on top of a VERY steep bank above the campground while the town of Koblenz (swiss) is just across a bridge from the camp. There was a very nice bar and restaurant at the camp but we decided to go to Koblenz to have dinner in Switzerland (just because we could). Big mistake. There was one Gausthaus open, we are the only customers, and the food was decent. However it was shockingly expensive for what we got and the service bordered on surly. We’ve not had this experience before in Switzerland. The upside is that it made us feel even better about deciding to ride the German side on this trip!
One last thing, the bikes were equally creamy smooth today!

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Song of the Day:

Sofa by Frank Zappa …. Fell asleep listening to this (for me) classic. It’s as close as I come to listening to Wagnerian Opera (FZ style)

Swans on the Rhine
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Basel in the mid morning
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Some really beautiful riding today along the Rhine
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Laufenberg Germany on the north bank
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Laufenberg Switzerland on the south bank
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Today's ride: 91 km (57 miles)
Total: 1,591 km (988 miles)

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