Rain stops play

It’s raining, no cycling for us today. Can you hear Kim cheering?

The year we came here for Christmas, we spent some time in the small town of Daun and bought a wooden Christmas decoration from a lovely little department store. It is one of only a few items at home that Kim has put her name in the event of divorce proceedings! The store is still there and full of things you didn’t know you needed, a great place to browse while it’s raining heavily outside.
From there we tried to find Hit Markt for John’s supermarket hit…… sorry about the pun. You would not have thought it could be so hard but the satnav packed up and the phones had limited internet access. Tempers were frayed and many circular miles were driven to find a supermarket which had been within 500m at one point. John spent a happy 30 minutes pottering around looking at German Dinkel biscuits before we decided to drive back to the Mosel for some wine tasting.

We headed towards Koblenz and stopped at Klotten to admire the neatly planted vineyards which appear to be mainly on the South slope. Obviously more research is required to understand why or if we’ve just made that up,

We’ve not had great weather today but the rain stopped long enough for us to have beer overlooking the Mosel before venturing into a small shop for a wine tasting. Our latest favourite is a dry Rivaner and the Beetle has a boot full.

We have an early start for Dunkirk tomorrow so no more from us other than to say, we understand the Tour de France started in Germany today. If you see a couple of Bromptons taking part, please be clear it isn’t us!

55 kilometres and counting….

Photos have been added to yesterday’s instalment.

Today started early, for us. If we were to cycle 55kms from Daun to Bernkastel-Kues, we had to be in Bernkastel by 10 to take the bus up to Daun – there was no way Kim could be persuaded to do the round trip, particularly as one way is all uphill.

We were parked in Bernkastel by 9:45, we’d paid for three days parking and found out where to get the bus from, how smug were we feeling? The bus journey takes 2 hours mainly because the driver has to get out and load more bikes onto the trailer he’s towing. Negotiating a bus and trailer round hairpin bends deserves a medal!

The cycle route, Maar Mosel Radweg, starts from a disused railway station in Daun and goes along the old track to Wittlich before following the Maar river down to the Mosel.

Helpfully, the cycle route has the distance written on it in 0.5km intervals. This is fantastic when you’re on a downhill section and kms fly by. However, the first 2-3 km from Daun are uphill and knowing you have another 40+km to go is not helpful. We arrived at Wittlich, for lunch, just before 3 and having cycled 35km. We then discovered it was another 20 to Bernkastel!! By the time we reached the Mosel bottoms were sore and we’d been caught in a couple of torrential downpours. Luckily after each one, the sun came out and we dried off nicely before getting soaked again. We couldn’t help but be impressed by Schloss Lieser as we cycled past. It was built for the Puricelli family in 1880s and has its own Wikipedia page…

Finally, 6.5 hours after we’d left, the castle at Bernkastel came into view. We’d last visited when we spent Christmas here with Ken and Diane. We couldn’t remember what had possessed us to walk all the way up but think it was probably Ken and Matthew egging each other on. Kim did remember that Diane gave up at the cafe halfway up and settled down for a coffee while the rest of us carried on!