Love this photo of Mike on one of our ‘training rides’ for the tour – up to Sallion
Our second Swiss cycle tour approaches. With a very good weather window we have decided to drive up to Obergoms and then make our way over the Furka and Gotthard Passes before heading down the Tremola to Airolo. The highlight of the tour is the Tremola. The Gotthard Pass is part of the continental divide in Europe separating the Rhine which drains into the North Sea and the Ticino which eventually drains into the Adriatic. The Tremola is Switzerlands longest memorial to road construction. On its most spectacular section the cobbled road climbs 300m via 24 switchbacks (each with its own name) over a distance of 4km. There are 37 bends in total! It was originally constructed between 1827 and 1832, and reconstructed in 1951.
Anyway we had decided to pass for the moment on our cycle tour of the Jura area and instead head up to Obervald and complete part of Route 3. See the link to Swiss mobile which is very helpful to plan routes. .https://www.schweizmobil.ch/en/cycling-in-switzerland/route-03.html
This morning was a little worrying as my bike had started clicking after Mike put (excellent) new tyres on it at the weekend. We thought a good clean of the chain would sort it out, alas, the clicking remained. So Mike took it down to our friendly bike shop, where Justin who gave us a couple of new tyre spanner’s the other day, agreed to have a look at it. Quickly decided that the spokes were the problem and tightened them all up a fraction.
Car all packed and time to go. Beautiful drive up to Obergoms, sat on a rock in a field to have our picnic lunch at Geschinen where we often start our XC Skiing. Very different in the summer! Then made our way to Hotel Alpenhof in Oberwald. Have not stayed there before but a couple of years back came and had a light lunch where the owners (very young) daughter helped serve us. Lovely day and coming here bought back those memories.
Our plan was for a relaxing cycle in the valley, however when I got on my bike the clicking was back. We decided to head down to the bus stop where we will get the post bus up to Gletsch tomorrow and check it out. Fortunately there was a bike repair shop opposite and so we asked the owner if he would have a quick look at it. He gave the spokes another tighten and aligned the back wheel a bit and adjusted my back disc brake. Gave me the opportunity to look in the sale rack for a pressie! Bike that felt like new and a lovely new cycle shirt and I was a happy bunny.
We carried on with our cycle down the valley on the paths we normally XC Ski on. The golf course looked really pretty. We made our way back to our lunch spot and sat in deckchairs enjoying the sunshine and views whilst sipping a tasty ginger beer (from Hospental where we will pass through tomorrow) – that is until a bird pooed in Mikes fortunately he had drunk most of it by then.
More equipment worries on the way back to our hotel as Mikes gears were not shifting properly. Managed to sort them (at least I hope so) and we had a lovely cycle back to the hotel. Sat on our veranda having a beer in the afternoon sun, until it got to hot and we had to retreat into the shade of our room
A really nice place to stay, good shower, comfy rooms and excellent location. Dinner was very nice I had a large chicken salad and mike went for pork in a mushroom cream sauce with rotti. We spoilt ourselves with cheesecake for desert along with a coffee – which was a mistake as I struggled to get to sleep later. Although can I blame the coffee or general anxiety about our ride tomorrow? Let’s hope that we can manage – after all its only the Iserables loop times 2.5!