The Danube: Vienna, Austria, to Passau, Germany.

DSCN3750Tuesday, 30 May – The expected front came through during the night, while I was translating in the hostel. With beautiful sunshine and a full extra day available, I decided to take a quick ride out to the Schönbrunn Palace to visit the gardens. Daniel had recommended that to me after coming back from the Vienna Philharmonic concert there last week. Continue reading

The Danube: Vienna

IMG_20170523_181735Wednesday, the 24th of May, I returned to the Danube River. Hütteldorf was a cute village, with a very old church just outside the Youth Hostel, but I was ready for the big city. After packing, I rolled easily down the side streets and along the bike paths by the Wien River from Hütteldorf to the Favoriten district in the southern part of Vienna. IMG_20170523_184003 Continue reading

Danube Detour: Eisenstadt to the Vienna Woods

IMG_20170520_185716Saturday, the 20th of May, the forecast called for stiff headwinds and colder temperatures, so I was not sure how long the day’s ride would take. Only 67 km, but riding uphill 400 m into the wind had me worried. Rain was supposed to start after dark, so I was sure that I could have my campsite pitched and ready in time, regardless of how slowly I rode.
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Danube Detour: Bratislava to Eisenstadt

DSCN3595Tuesday morning, the 16th of May, I rose early, excited to be on my way again. Crossing to the right bank of the bank of the Danube, I quickly found myself in Austria on a dedicated bicycle path that led south into the fertile floodplain. The wind was out of the southwest. Had it been any stronger, it might have posed a problem from the outset. But the air was warm, and the day was sunny. I revelled in the fresh air and the smooth pavement leading me among the wind farms. Below the turbines, immense fields stretched to the horizon. I recognized corn and rapeseed, but not most of the other crops. This early in the spring, it all looks like a lawn that needs mowing. Continue reading

Breaking Out 2021: the Cumberland Gap

IMG_20210505_164810Natural Tunnel State Park, Thursday the 6th of May. I woke at dawn and dozed until 08:30. The Duty Ranger I had spoken to on the phone showed up while I was breaking camp. Perhaps because they are so happy to be vaccinated and able to talk to people, the rangers were very sociable. He told me that I could pay at the Park Office on the way out, which was more convenient than finding the station in the Lovers’ Leap campground. Continue reading

Breaking Out 2021: Beyond the Blue Ridge

On Monday, the 26th of April, I broke camp at the Indian Heritage RV Park in mid morning. It was sunny and not as cold as the day before. As I started into the hills away from Martinsville, the headwinds from the west were moderate, but steady. I needed my lowest gear twice, an augury of what lay ahead. Continue reading

Breaking Out 2021: Southside Virginia

cp-image-01The week after receiving my first dose of the Moderna vaccine against COVID-19, I rode to Chippokes Plantation State Park (see: https://freewheelingfreelancer.com/2021/03/20/breaking-out-2021-chippokes-plantation-state-park/). Continue reading

The Danube: Gyo̎r to Bratislava

dscn3601.jpgAfter two days in Gyo̎r, I set out on the 12th for Bratislava. There was a steady northwest wind all day, but it was not as strong as earlier. North of Gyo̎r, I found myself riding through tidy suburbs with single-family dwellings, set in the middle of vast fields of various crops. The plants were all short, and different bright shades of springtime green – except for the rapeseed (brassica napus), blooming in blinding yellow. Continue reading

The Danube: Budapest to Gyo̎r

Monday, the 8th of May, a heavy overcast made sunglasses unnecessary as I hauled my bicycle from the basement and my five bags from the room. By shuffling things around on Sunday evening, I managed to get more weight moved aft on the bike. OsmAnd software led me easily up the left bank of the Danube and over the great river into Buda. The sky cleared as I crossed the bridge.  Continue reading

Breaking Out 2021: Chippokes Plantation State Park

cp-image-01On Monday, 8 March 2021, I wheeled my loaded bicycle into the lift and went down to the street. Glorious, blazing sunshine in a cloudless sky, the temperature in the low teens (°C). The weather forecast was as close to ideal as it could get for the first day on the road since the Pandemic Pedalling of 2020. Although a headwind was forecast for both days of my outing, it proved to be almost a dead calm. Continue reading