Day 10 - Palladio to Palio: First 100km day ever - No More Taxi Drivers - CycleBlaze

January 25, 2015

Day 10 - Palladio to Palio: First 100km day ever

It was pouring rain when I set out this morning. I wanted to stay in bed, particularly after last night's interrupted sleep, but I have another long day ahead. Palladio on a Sunday morning was marked by competing religions; first the call to prayer, then church bells, then singing at another church.

The first 15km were flat and I passed some lagoons with lots of waterfowl. Then it was slow going to Xanthi, what must have been a gradual uphill for 20km. I wasn't impressed when I saw the sign for Thessaloniki--showing I was only 20km closer after riding for 45km so far today!

It rained off and on until early afternoon again. Then that gave way to sweat and sunburn. The scenery, along with the weather, improved after Xanthi, with hills to the right of the road, but I was too tired to really enjoy it, at least until I reached the sea, and had water on one side, trees and rock on the other, and the winter afternoon sun giving it all that glow when I looked behind me.

Unfortunately, that was about when the shoulder disappeared and traffic increased, with many blind curves--and the sun in drivers' eyes. I started looking for campsites, but didn't see anything I could get the bike to, as the coast was quite built up and the forested parts were on steep terrain.

I finally found a church and asked the priest if I could camp there. He seemed amused by my request, but gave me a kitchen room on the lower level. Set up my mattress on the table. Fancy digs tonight. The place was right on the water, so I enjoyed a nice sunset and the sound of waves. The rain started again after dark.

I wish I didn't have to hurry across Greece, as there's some neat stuff to see here. And it would have been nice to stop and dry out my tent in the afternoon sun. But I need to minimize my time here in order to maximize my time in the rest of Schengen. Ninety days isn't enough for everything I want to see in Europe!

I don't know why the map shows 114km. I only went 100km.

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Today's ride: 101 km (63 miles)
Total: 538 km (334 miles)

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