366km down: 5,859km to go.
Unlike when I got to Russia my phone did not automatically reset when we got to Estonia but I did not realize this. Walli had not bought an alarm so I told her that I would wake her up at 6 – so unfortunately the next morning I woke her up at what I thought was 6 but it was actually 5!
Our first night of camping last night, at Lainela Camp – it was also the first night of rain, but I managed to stay dry. Thankfully the rain had stopped in the morning, we packed the tent and gear and set off. The day was a bit overcast and quite mild. Some of the riders complained about the wind but to a Wellingtonian it was just a mild breeze. The first 20k was on a dirt road, we slipped and slid over this. My legs just did not want to bike ride after the gravel we turned onto the highway for 5k which was a bit of a worry with the really large trucks, however we quickly turned off onto country roads again. I was really struggling to keep up with up with Daphne and Shirley and convinced them to go on without me. Nothing worse than feeling like you are holding people back and they are not enjoying riding. I caught them up just before lunch as they had stopped. At this point I was seriously doubting my ability to complete the ride. I set off from the lunch stop before them, thinking they would soon catch up with (and then overtake) me but suddenly my legs had come right and I ended up catching up with the group in front.
We rode the rest of the day through woods – kilometre after kilometre, with the occasional scattering of quaint little houses. It would not have been surprising to see Hansel and Gretel walking through the woods or Red Riding Hood and the Wolf. At one stage going through the woods we came to a clearing and it was right by the sea, there were heaps of boulders and hundreds of white swans sitting on them.
The gradient was a gradual downhill the rest of the day with a glorious downhill at the end (thankfully did not have to climb back up this the next day, which I thought we might as it was just before the camp, but the road carried on past the camp). When we got to the camp we were able to rent a bunk room each instead of having to tent. This gave us the added bonus of being able to dry our tents out in our rooms.
Food so far:
Muesli or porridge with or without banana, dark rye bread with spreads tea or coffee (have started drinking coffee instead of tea first thing in the morning as the tea water is always lukewarm).
Sandwiches, spreads, cheese, meat, tuna, fruit
Fresh salmon steaks with noodles and salad
Chicken thighs charred and simmered with rice, celery root, cabbage and carrot stir fry.