Vegadeo to Cudillero. Spain

What I looked at most of the day today

The view from my room tonight

I rode 57 miles today and climbed 2500 feet. It was not an easy ride, largely because of the wind, in fact it was harder than yesterdays ride. I had hope that the wind would be less of a problem once I headed east along the Atlantic, but this was actually the slowest day I've ridden in a long time. My average speed was 8.6 mph, so it took me six and a half hours to cover 57 miles. Hard riding, almost all of it on the drops, head down into the wind - at 10 to 15 mph with some gust above 30 mph - and most of it, uphill. I now think the wind here makes 1 km of riding equivalent to 1 mile of riding without the wind.

Looking south from a viaduct

Looking north from the same viaduct

I got discouraged early on today, but my attitude improved after I stopped for coffee about an hour into the ride ;-}. I had a pastry that I bought (for .25 Euro cents) at a supermarket last night, for breakfast this morning, but no caffeine. When I got some caffeine, my mood improved. Although there is nothing great about riding hard without making much progress, and while having to fight the wind almost constantly for control of the bike, this kind of riding does beat some alternatives, e.g. it could be raining! It also helped that, when I did get the opportunity to look up today, the scenery was quite nice. If I'm going to suffer, I should at least be rewarded with nice views!

Riding today required 'great courage.' At least that is what I was told by a French speaking fellow on Cape Breton as I rode the north coast of Nova Scotia under similar conditions. I also heard that compliment from a French man as I ground up a very long hill north of Carcasone after a very long day of riding. Today, I often thought I was simply crazy to keep going, but, at the same time, I enjoyed the idea that I could keep going. Still, since this hotel is located right by a train stop. I may try to catch a train to Oviedo and then try to train hop my way east. There are limits to my crazyness.

Approaching a long viaduct

The wind warning before the viaduct

Each end of the long viaducts had a winsock

The best views, and some of the hardest riding of the day, were on viaducts. This is truly a spectacular road. It is crossing deep (up to 400 feet) valleys on beautiful viaducts. These viaduct have railing at the side to prevent bicyclists and pedestrians from being blown off by the high winds ;-}. I walked most of one - about a third of a mile - because I could not keep my bike under control at 4 or 5 mph in crosswinds gust to 40 mph ;-{. I rode most of another, similar viaduct because there was no traffic in my lane and I was going a bit downhill on that one. It is easier to handle the hard wind gusts at 15 mph and when I had a whole lane as well as a good shoulder. I stopped for the night right after that viaduct because I saw a hotel that looked like it had a great view. It does and it is reasonably priced. The drawback is no supper - the restaurant doesn't open till 9 PM - standard Spainsh supper hour - and the snack bar is very limited. I also don't expect any breakfast, although I forgot to ask.

I stopped for lunch at a restaurant a few miles east of Navia. It was basically a Spanish truck stop restaurant. I stopped because you could hardly see the building for all the cars and trucks parked around it. It featured amazingly fast service - lunch only took half an hour - amid controlled chaos as they served a three course lunch to hundreds of people between 1 PM and 3:30 PM in a place that seated less than 50 people. It was good, and it was fun ;-}! I had a noodle soup, a large piece of fish - around here a piece of fish is hacked lengthwise from the fish and includes the spine and bones. This fish was about half a foot tall and four inches wide, and my section was about 2 inched long. It was cooked with potatoes and some other vegies and quite good. I picked flan for desert today. I drank red wine - two glasses - and water with gas - good stuff - with my meal. The cost was 8 Euro. That was just before the construction started.

Another big issue today was several long stretches of construction.
You haven't lived until you've fought your way uphill into a strong wind in the middle of major road construction!

That didn't look like fun, and it wasn't!.

It was a hard ride today. It would have been hard without the wind. It would have been hard without the many miles of construction. It was really hard with the strong wind, the hills, and lots of construction. The wind is the worst part becasue it simply wears you done. The hills going up have downhills. The construction ends (and unfortunately starts again and again). The wind is alway there, beating agaist you, roaring in your ears, fighting for control of your bike, and, as yesterday, making me stop and dig out my second knee warmer for my bad knee.

I made the mistake of packing it at the bottom of a pannier and I ended up having to partially empty both panniers on the highway shoulder in the strong wind, with even stronger windblasts for passing trucks. I don't think I lost anything in the process, but I did have to go after some stuff that blew away!.

Last night was good. I got to bed at 10 PM and didn't get up till 8:40. My body is adapting to this hard riding routine, but it needs lots of sleep. I managed to get on the road by about 9:30 and rode till about 6:30 PM. I was planning to ride for another half hour or so, to get in roughly 100 km, but this place was too pretty to pass up. It really isn't too impressive as a place to stay, but the view is incredible. I hope I can get a good nights sleep here dispite the restaurant noise which should last from roughly 9 PM till midnight.

Aview of the cove where I'm staying from the viaduct that crosses it

Another beautiful cove a few miles west of here

This beautiful country, but hard country to bicycle tour. When I searched the web for ride reports on this coast, I didn't find any. Now I know why ;-}!

Previous Page Next Page