Day 91 - Kwidzyn to Gdansk: From the Bosphorus to the Baltic! No, wait, I still have a few weeks left. - No More Taxi Drivers - CycleBlaze

April 16, 2015

Day 91 - Kwidzyn to Gdansk: From the Bosphorus to the Baltic! No, wait, I still have a few weeks left.

The wind was a huge factor today. With all the roads being busier than they were on previous days, it was a tense ride. And slow, too slow. Going 9 km/hr at times is not conducive to a 110 km day. But I had decided to take the detour to Malbork Castle.

I had to ride on a national road for the last few kilometres into Malbork, but it went quickly because the wind was mostly behind me. On the way out, I had to ride that same road, into the wind--with enough crosswind to cause a major problem around the plentiful traffic--for three times the distance. I passed a touring cyclist going into Malbork and hoped he didn't have to come back this way. Okay, if I'm honest, I kind of hoped I wasn't going to be the only one who had to be on that road in a headwind...

I decided it was too dangerous to ride on the road, and switched to riding beside the road, which was a semi-viable option for once. Then I decided it was better to ride on the road and switched back. I did this a few times, averaging 10 km/hr. Then, suddenly, a paved shoulder! My speed increased increased to 11.5 km/hr: I was making real progress now!

A bit later in the afternoon, I was still biking slowly into the wind when an oncoming car drove by, the driver leaning on the horn. As there was nobody else near, it was clearly directed at me--but I was riding at the side of the road, what was the problem? As he got closer, I saw the driver was waving at me. He wasn't angry or annoyed, he just wanted to say hi. Not quite how the rest of the world says hi. Polish drivers really don't try to be jerks, the problem is sheer incompetence, poor judgment (Slovaks were bad like this, too), as if they don't have to pass a test to get their licence. For some reason this isn't a source of comfort.

The road into Gdansk wasn't too bad, even though there was a long built-up area. There were often bike paths, and the last 10 km into the city featured a truck-free road. But I was really, really tired when I finally arrived. I think I'm going to spend the next two days not moving. Then the next three weeks constantly moving.

See what I mean? Even the wind isn't entertaining anymore. There's nothing left to say. Take a look at my Gdansk photos, then come back after I'm finished with Poland. I don't mind. You might miss something interesting, like a boar encounter, but you likely won't.

I think I accidentally took this one when I noticed the wind was blowing my bike over again
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In this context, this word translates as "cobbled road paved over and patched half a dozen times." It's interesting how I can usually tell when I'm riding on paved-over cobbles, even when there aren't potholes revealing the cobbles.
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Malbork tower, now a pub
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Malbork castle from the outside
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This makes me really want to buy a top hat.
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Today's ride: 112 km (70 miles)
Total: 4,507 km (2,799 miles)

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