Day 9: Joulumae to Mazsalaca – 118k

794km down: 5,431km to go.

Thankfully although the weather forecast had said rain all day there was no rain when we set off. We had a good flat and gentle climb once again through forest. The rain played games with us all day – the sun would come out then the sky would go dark and the rain would spit, we would stop and put on our wet weather gear then the sun would come out and so on ……. All day must have changed 6 or 7 times!

We went through the border to Latvia at 43k – no border control, just the Estonia flag and the Latvia sign together. Immediately though the condition of the road deteriorated!

Mostly the ride was flatish with a few steady climbs, 10k before lunch it was a dirt road again but not too bad. When we got to the lunch stop we were joined by a drunk elderly Latvian man on a bike who had a long conversation with us.

After lunch we continued the “rain versus sun and changing clothes” game. We saw another storks nest, but in this one 3 young fledgings were practicing flying. They were rising up and down on the nest but not actually going anywhere.

The ride seemed to stretch on and on today, I was very pleased to get to the last turn off the main road – unfortunately it was my old friend a gravel road again for 6k. This was really dreadful – the bike wheels kept losing traction, a number of people came off and it seemed to take forever. Finally turned into the camping ground which is very nice.

Today was also meant to be a tent day but convinced Shirley, Walli and Daphne to come in with me on our own villa at 11euro each – a bargain with its own toilet and shower – and no tent to pack away again in the morning, or rain to worry about overnight.

Tomorrow the weather forecast is rain but thankfully we have 95k to Rigga and we have a rest day the next day to look forward to.  I am refusing to think about how the only way out of here is back along the same horrid 6k stretch of soft dirt!

Categories: Cycling trip | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Day 9: Joulumae to Mazsalaca – 118k

  1. David

    TK – You seem to be getting soft in your old age! Where is that colonial pioneering spirit? And you have tackled the off-road bit in Makara. Attention to the working surface.

  2. Karen

    Hmmmmm…………conversation with a drunk elderly Latvian man on a bicycle……………the mind truly boggles!!!!!!!

  3. suzanne

    Did the drunken cyclist sing for some sandwiches? I bet you’re glad you chose the better off road tyres, given the gravel and potholes! sounds like the canteens are as hazardous as the highways tho xxx

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