Saturday, April 4, 2009

"Lidice, Czech Rep" My First Bike Tour 5/4/09 Day 262

Day 262 (Slide show) (Video)
Early in the week I wasn't sure about where to go on my first ride but the weather was definitely getting better and I needed to make up my mind. I had a few ideas in mind but the place I liked most was a village called Lidice. This week is going to be great. I have been waiting for a long time to ride in the Czech Rep. and now I'm a bit nervous about it. I've done all my preparations thoroughly so I'm planning on making it on Wednesday.
The route I have planed will be about 145km with one night camping out. One of the concerns I have are the markings and signs they use here to designate the trails. They are very bad. I decided to go out on a scouting mission on Tuesday to ride a portion of the route to check it out. It is a good thing I did. The trail signs were easy to miss if they were there at all. It was a good riding day and I had gone about 40km when I crashed and injured my elbow and hip. As usual a car swiped me. This gave me an extra day though because I was very sore on Wednesday. One more day to rest up was good and it was a foggy, cool day anyway. Thursday was a perfect day, sunny but cool. I was out of the door by 10am and heading for the metro. I decided to reverse the route after my scouting mission on Tuesday.
I have an appointment at CS Cargo to check on my crate. I want to make sure it is still there and in good shape, I will need it come July. The weight on my bike, Renee is her name, is about 65 lbs. I've had more before, this is just a one night trip.
As I got on the metro I had two Czech guys asking me about Renee and where I was going. It was funny because one guy did the translation for the other, they didn't know each other. The appointment as CS Cargo went well, my crate is in good shape. My new friend Pavel has been keeping an eye on it for me.
When I left I wasn't done the road but a mile when I missed the turn. I doubled back and found that I needed to take a dirt road. No wonder. This would be the first of many dirt roads, trails or paths I would find. I made Lidice around 6pm which was a bit sooner then I expected. The ride was very nice and a lot of fun. The different villages were very interesting and I only got a little lost. It was a great decision to reverse the route because the ride today was flat for the most part. Now tomorrow I will be able to have a downhill day.
After touring around the very large grounds here at this monument I stopped for a snack at the memorial area. This place is very large and impressive. It is a lot more then I expected. The story here is quite sad. It's a good place to visit.
Its around 8pm and I'm sitting by a beautiful little pond were there are these large Carp jumping everywhere. Its starting to get a bit cold though. I rode around for about an hour until I found this place. The memorial park is quite large and I didn't want to camp in it, so I'm about a 1/4 mile away. This is a nice camp spot and I just had dinner.
It sure was hard to sleep in the hammock last night. I like to sleep on my side and be able to move from side to side. Can't do that in this thing. I'll get used to it. The Hennessy Hammock is perfect for bike touring because of the weight and it keeps you off the muddy ground. Someday I will have to put it on the ground though, I'm sure I'll get stuck without any trees.

This place by the lake has been a good spot. I was up at 6am and in bad need of some coffee. Instead of making any I decided to pack up and head to the village. Only 20 min.

I should be able to find some there I hope. Just as I got to the village area I realized that nobody was up yet. I turned towards the Memorial and there was some folks with some coffee. These were people that rune the gift shop, real nice. One lady spoke some strange form of English but I could get it. She told me several of the stories of the place. The whole thing is a bit depressing. I'm glad I came to see it but I can't believe what people will do to others when they get crazy like this. In the museum they had a film about the place so I stayed to watch it. Sad stuff.

Well I'm off down the road, heading for my flat. I'm glad I switched directions so I could have the downhill today. I made a few route changes but nothing major. In one spot I was on a dirt hiking trail, this was suppose to be a bike trail according to the map. By 3pm I was at the river waiting for the ferry. My Renee is almost to big for this little boat. The Skipper who was dressed in a little Navy suit, was amazed how heavy she was. I made it though and was home by 5pm.

This has been a great first trip and I'm ready for another. I will spend the next few days repairing a few things and pick up some supplies before the next one.

This weather is suppose to be good for another week which is great. I'll leave next Wednesday for the another one.

Note: Fix the bike computer.

Trip Count (est.)

Trip Distance 92.00 KM

Total Time 6:43 HR

Average Speed 15.96

Max Speed 44.89 KM

Trip Climb 976 M

Total Weight 81 LBS

I returned on Friday and while recovering the weather kept improving. On Saturday I went for a ride on Betsy to the city. Its my first time to wear shorts since Greece. Some friends wanted to meet at a “Beer Garden” which was opening for the first time this year.

There are several “Beer Gardens” here that are in the larger parks. They are nice spots and a good place to hang out in the good weather.

The only thing I forgot was my Stripen water filter. I have plenty of water though.
Last note, my bike computer battery failed so I don't have any good mileage numbers. Damn.

Special Note: Don't plan on just having one beer. It's impossible, the Czech beer is easy to drink.