We headed off as a threesome again today (with David) all prepared for the wet weather. It had been raining and the air was damp and crisp. From our hotel in Neuhausen we descended to the river following the paved cycle path to Schauffhausen (3.2 km) which is a nice old town on the River Rhine.
We followed the river for some distance on the road rejoining the cycle track just after Busingen AM Hochrhein. For the next 11 km there was a significant portion of cinder pathway parallel to the river and also through agricultural farm land and forests. Given the wet weather this ensured that our bikes, backsides and lower backs were nicely covered in light coloured dirt.
We made the first of our many border crossings on a cycle path leaving Switzerland and entering Germany near a cowshed. No fuss, bother or ado.
We passed by Diessenhofen (13.4 km) and Hemishofen (19.5 km).
We the rode through a nice old arch into the centre of Stein AM Rhein, a very pretty and ornate German village. As we were already a bit cold and wet we briefly thought about stopping for a coffee but decided it was a bit too early.
We followed a railway line fairly parallel for some distance on the cycle path before leaving it to enter Steckborn (34.3 km). Shortly thereafter I slipped on the road whilst crossing to the cycle path falling, adding more bruises to my growing collection and removing some skin. I was a bit sore a shaken but think my main concern was ” is my bike ok??”
Having already crossed back into Switzerland we entered Germany again at the 49.4 km mark.
We arrived in Konstanz at the 52 km point and negotiated our way through heading to the ferry to cross Lake Constance. It is a short 15 minute crossing. Enough time to have a coffee, toilet break and try and dry your Knicks under the hand dryer in the bathroom!!
Once in Meersburg we were playing dodge with hundreds upon hundreds of tourists, on wet cobblestones to boot. We decided to have lunch but needed to find somewhere that may be sympathetic to three wet and dirty cyclists. We located an Italian styled pub and there was initial consternation with the waiter but the boss man came out and showed us where we could sit!
None of us were sure what country we were in having crossed borders multiple time in only a few hours, and having just crossed Lake Constance by ferry. So David asked the waiter ” excuse me, what country are we in?” We all had a good laugh as Australia is such a vast country that most of us do not get to experience multiple countries in one day.
The answer was Germany – good answer as we could pay in Euro rather than our limited and precious Swiss francs.
While we waited for our lunch I wandered out to the foreshore attracted by a pole with gargoyles. An artist with a dark sense of humour I suspect ( I have not photographed the odder ones…). But these couple took my fancy.
Vineyards up the hill on the foreshore.
This is just as we departed Meersburg.
It started to rain again on and off which made riding quite slippery. As it is autumn here, the deciduous trees have started to shed their leaves which in places densely litter the ground along with what we think are chestnut husks.
We were quite slow and careful with turns and descents not wishing to have any more spills. The alps beckon and we need to stay uninjured.
We rode through more towns and villages including Hagnau (61.0 km), Immenstaad (64.9 km) and Friedrichschafen (74.4 km) home to the Zeppelin museum.
This is the view across the lake at this point with storm clouds brewing again.
We had the option of shooting out to Lindau Island but given the inclement weather erred against it.
Pricing through a series of apple orchards we came across a small food establishment with a beer garden so we opted to have an ice cream and seek shelter hoping the rain that had just recommended would soon pass.
We were very pleased to ride into Bregenz and rock up to our hotel at 2.45 pm. We were the first in and were able to strip off and enjoy a nice warmshower and wash our clothes.
At the time of writing our friend Gibbo is yet to arrive. Not always the best at following route instructions he turned left when he got off the ferry ( instead of right) and ended up around 110km off route and in Switzerland somewhere. The van was despatched to retrieve him. I hope he has remembered it is his wife’s birthday today and that Australia is 8 hours ahead of us otherwise his troubles may not have ended!! Happy birthday Anita!!!