#RoadsFromRome Day 9 - Forests, Valleys, Big Climbs.

I remember planning today's route; I was in a rather romantic / masochistic frame of mind. I selected the smallest twisty roads I could find on the map. The result... a tough but beautiful day.

From my hill top camp the road descended for several miles, before beginning to climb. I reached the summit of that hill, descended, and went straight into the next climb. This pattern repeated itself, time and time again.

Each climb was unique, with some twisting singletrack roads, and technical swooping descents. None of the climbs were especially big, certainly no higher than 600 metres. The speed crippling thing was the volume of them, and their unrelenting presence.

A particular highlight was the descent down into the Mosel valley. The wide open river is flanked on both sides by steep slopes lined with vines. Of course, there was a substantial climb to get back out of it... Beauty and the Beast.

I got caught out by the Sunday supermarket closures today, so was digging deep into my remaining 'emergency rations', and munched my way through numerous Veloforte bars, cereal bars, and salted nuts. I stopped twice for coffee and cake, but even the majority of the bakeries seemed to have closed.

By 18:30 I had reached the intended end point for the day, but given my bonus miles yesterday I decided to push on and make the 230 kilometres that was on the card as today's distance. I eventually set up camp in an orchard at 20:00, somewhere near Köln.

Dinner was my emergency noodles and a Fori bar, with some nice fresh rye bread from one of the bakeries. Very glad I carried those all this way.

Tomorrow is just 180 kilometres, and it is quite literally all downhill. Bring on The Netherlands!


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