Day 76 - Jindrichuv Hradec to Trebic: Be careful what you wish for - No More Taxi Drivers - CycleBlaze

April 1, 2015

Day 76 - Jindrichuv Hradec to Trebic: Be careful what you wish for

[Note: I'm writing this from memory a few days late, seems my note-taking was a bit sub-par. My journal for this day consists of a date, a distance, and the word 'Ugh'.]

I woke up to see snow on roofs, but as the wind had subsided a bit (that turned out to be very temporary) and I could see blue sky, I decided not to take the train. Which was probably a wise choice as a quick internet search suggested I would have to take a bus and two trains and go through Prague to get to Brno from here.

The main square in Jindrichuv Hradec was very pretty and I wish I had a photo, but the lighting was all wrong and there was also a busload of Japanese tourists in my way. The small lake was also very pretty. The views from the many hills I had to climb were also very pretty, forests and green farmland. The square in Telc was very pretty and had no tourists. One thing was not pretty. As I was inching up a hill just outside a village, the wind kindly blew a terrible stench at me. I've biked past plenty of stinky fields, and they're generally no big deal, but this was far worse than any of them. It was so bad that breathing only through my mouth was ineffective--I was actually gagging my way up the hill. I tried holding my breath, but that only made me stop pedalling, thus making my situation worse in the long run.

By 10:00, the wind was blowing as hard as it did yesterday. Fortunately, the really windy parts weren't accompanied by rain. Unfortunately, they were accompanied by snow.

In a rare instance of good timing, I had ducked into a bus shelter to eat lunch about 30 seconds before a burst of snow started. There were no seats in the shelter, but it was blocking most of the wind, so I happily ate my lunch and unhappily watched the snow pile up all over my bike and gear, as well as the ground. This was bad because it meant the temperature was low enough that the snow might start accumulating on the road, and, even worse, that I might get ice on my rims. That turned out to be no problem, and the snow cloud passed after fifteen or twenty minutes, but of course I was subjected to several more snow clouds during the day.

I was following the recommended bike routes to Brno, but at some point near the end of the day, I missed a turn and only discovered it 4km down the road. There was absolutely no way I was going to go back, so I continued to the main road and followed that for a while, pulling off the road whenever something big drove by in either direction. The wind was pushing me off the road, not into traffic, so this was manageable for a few kilometres. I then turned onto a side road and tried to find a way into Trebic, which was not on the itinerary a couple hours earlier.

I spotted a bike route that was heading in the right direction and looked shorter than the road route. So I followed it up a rocky track and along a field, where it became a grassy, muddy, slippery track and I had to push the bike. I followed this down and then up again, into a forest, up a steep hill, and to a junction, where the signpost informed me the bike route continued in the direction I did not want to go. I abandoned the bike route and found the road again, noting the shortcut had saved me zero distance and cost me at least half an hour.

I made it to Trebic without further incident--in fact, the road by the river was nice and I even got a driving school student stuck behind me because they were too timid to pass--and took a room at a hotel with an elevator.

Another mentally and physically exhausting day. And more wind in the forecast tomorrow.

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Sheltering in the bus shelter
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The back edge of the worst snow, followed by cheerful blue sky
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I wish I had a 'before' photo. Then I would know what hazard the sign was warning me about.
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Today's ride: 92 km (57 miles)
Total: 3,620 km (2,248 miles)

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