Day 13 Week 3 Day 14
Wed, 15. Mar 2023

Day 14 - from Pontremoli to Berceto

Windy, very windy. And the first day that I'm not just going up sometimes steep hills, but a proper pass. Not a giant, but not too easy. I got myself some candy and a banana and started. And well, while I was biking already two weeks, I was clearly not fit enough yet to just rush it.

Lucky me though, it was serpentines. And serpentines are a pleasing. One can set easy goals and has natural resting points. And what I accepted in the last few days was, I can push if it is too steep. There's no shame in that, specially when the load is heavy. And that's what I did. Slowly, but steady, I moved up.

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EuroVelo 5 - cycling the Passo della Cisa
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Looking back at the pictures, it was still quite early spring. Actually even winter. But I was wearing some long biking pants, so neither wind nor cold was a problem. And I really enjoyed it. I assume many people prefer straight roads, but I do love a bit of exhaust and pain. Pushing myself a bit and getting a sense of accomplishment. It was quite a bit of fun and the road was very empty. Hardly any cars and only one road cyclist. And he was one of my favourites. Elderly guy, a good 70 years old, with a yellow bike trikot, clearly pretty vintage. He went down, while I went up. Me, in my slight arrogance, thought, easy. Everybody can go down. I changed my mind completely though, when our paths crossed again at the peak. While I was slugging up, he went down and up. We had a little chat and he said that he's doing that every day, for quite some time already. Chapeau! Older people on non e-bikes quickly become my heroes on the trip.

Eventually I reached the peak. I had hoped for a nice coffee and a sweet treat. But everything was closed. And man, that wind was cold. I took some pictures and decided to continue, maybe I would find some food in Berceto. And then I saw them. It was very unexpected. I thought I was seeing a fata morgana. But I wasn't. Far far away, the Alps. The guy I mentioned earlier confirmed it. So much excitement for me, it felt like the first milestone was reached.

The way down was cold. Like bitterly cold. And I was set for Berceto, even when I'd be passing my accommodation and had to return. I was so hungry. But Berceto was closed, the whole town. Nothing. I decided to go even further, Google Maps had highlighted a restaurant that looked really good. But once I arrived, it was closed as well. They were on vacation. Very hungry I biked to the pub I'd be staying, even though it was not check in time yet. But I was warmly greeted and the host even prepared some food for me. Thank god!

EuroVelo 5 - on top of the Cisa Pass
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EuroVelo 5 - Passo della Cisa
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View from the Bed and Breakfast Le Spine, near Berceto
Mood: happy :)