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2019 July 10 to 13, Germany - Mosel River

We continue down the Mosel


View 2019 Adventure - Germany, Malta, Italy & Indonesia on Cindy Bruin's travel map.

WEDNESDAY 10TH JULY 2019 (DAY 19)

BIKE DAY 9 (BERNKASTEL-KUES TO BULLAY)

We both woke before the 8.30am alarm. Nice to have had a sleep in a bed in a building! Small pleasures when your tenting it, heh. I stepped out onto our balcony to assess the weather situation. Although the air temp was a little cool still, the very blue sky looked very promising. We dressed and headed to the breakfast room where we ate a ridiculous amount of food. Bread, rolls, cheeses and cold meats, coffee and tea filled our bellies to the max. Greedily we wanted to get our moneys worth and certainly did. And (sorry Surridges) yes, we did steal some cake to have for our morning tea on the river.

After breakfast we carried our panniers downstairs, removed the bikes from the garage and loaded them up for another day. I returned upstairs to return the keys and pay our bill. 68 euros for the room and breakfast plus 1.50euros each city tax. So, a bit more expensive than our camping costs, but well worth the comfortable warm night, and with the early checkin yesterday I think we got our moneys worth from this accommodation.
It was about 10.30am when we started to ride, and it turned out to be a perfect day for riding. The sun was out, but not too warm, the temp was up but not too hot and there was no head wind. And today the path was almost completely smooth, with just a few bumps caused by tree roots. A good riding day.

I’m not sure if it was because we were well rested or because of the filling breakfast we had eaten but we seemed to be riding at a pretty good speed today. Unfortunately, my gps mapper decided not to log our ride for the first 35 minutes so our first 8km were not logged. We gained a day with yesterday ride and today it looked like we were going to do the same. The track was fairly crowded again today, with lots of day trippers and cyclo travellers like us, going in both directions. We saw some of the same riders we passed or past us yesterday. Almost all the riders are, I would guess over 50, with about 70% in the over 60’s closer to 70 years age group. Granted a lot of these older folk are on e-bikes (electric), and we are the only ones I have seen on an ungeared bike. So, I don’t feel bad when we are overtaken by someone on an electric bike. Anyway, we seem to catch them on the flat, but they then pass us when we are pushing our laden bikes up a small hill/incline. Path hoggers coming towards us on a narrow part of the path, caused me to stop suddenly and with Lyn right behind me she had to stop suddenly too. A young boy following too closely behind her did not stop and crashed straight into the back of Lyn’s bike. Lucky no one was hurt and no damage to either bikes.

We stopped a couple of times for a break and a little snack (the stolen cake) but had no need for lunch as we were still full of breakfast.
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Again, the scenery was very pretty with steep vineyards to accompany us along the way. There is more river traffic now than we have seen earlier. A few private pleasure crafts, ferries travelling from town to town, as well as big long river cruisers.

We stopped in the town of Zell at about 2pm, wanting to ask the tourist office where we might be able to buy some gas for our cooker. We are not completely out but should start looking so we are not left with empty cans. They advised best place is camping grounds or try supermarket – not really much help as I already thought of them. Since we had stopped, I decided it was a good time to have a cold beer and we sat with a 2-euro radler purchased from a riverside kiosk. I remember from my last visit along this river they are much cheaper than cafes/restaurants to buy a beer from.
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Our stop for the night was less than 6km further along the river and we were there in no time. Found the campground, which is directly on the river, we given a pitch, set up camp then rode to local supermarket for dinner supplies. As the weather is still warm, we did not want to have a hot cooked meal, instead settled for a smoked fish – which costs a ridiculous 2.10 euros, would pay triple that in OZ, straw chips and cold egg salad. Of course, we also purchased a couple of radler beers to have back at camp.
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Hungry by 6, we ate earlier than usual due to no lunch, I guess. Showered, and now in tent at 8.27pm waiting for it to get dark. Haha, that won’t be for another 1 ½ hours at least, but somehow, I don’t think we will last that long. Just hope the temperature does not drop too much as it’s cold in the tent.

Another big ride today clocking up about 48km, but an easy ride I must admit. Lyn and I were just discussing today, that it’s amazing we have not been sore at all from the bike riding. Considering we had no training for this ride, we have had no soreness or muscle fatigue. Sure, we are tired at the end of the day, its now 8.39pm and I think Lyn has already crashed here next to me in the tent, but no stiff legs at all. Not bad for a couple of old birds!

I saw a big (about 1 meter long) snake cross the bike path this afternoon. Much bigger than the 2 little one we have previously encountered.

DISTANCE RODE TODAY 48KM
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BAREN CAMP – BULLARY 25 EUROS, TOILETS with paper, HOT SHOWERS, no power

THURSDAY 11TH JULY 2019 (DAY 20)

BIKE DAY 10 (BULLAY TO COCHEM)

Last night was the warmest night we have had in the tent!

Looked out the tent this morning at about 8.30am and did not like what I saw. Cloudy sky again, but this one looked like it was going to be wet. After such a glorious day yesterday, today turned out to be our worst so far.

We managed to have breakfast, pack up the tent dry and load the bikes before any moisture got to them. However, 10 minutes into our ride it started to spit lightly, then it got a little harder and then a little harder and a little more. The light spit turned into a constant drizzle, not a pour down, but definitely constant precipitation. I guess we were lucky in the fact there was no wind, so it was not too cold.
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We made the decision that we would push on to our nights stop and then get a room for the night as there was no way we would be camping in the wet. Our goal was Cochem which was about a 30km ride. We really had nowhere to wait out the rain and no point getting a room where we were as we were already on our way and semi damp. We rode a good path today and had it been sunny it would have been another fantastic ride, but one thing we can’t control is the weather.
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We made a few stops along the way when the rain got a little heavier but mostly just pedalled through the light rain.

We reached Cochem at about 1.30pm and went straight to the tourist office to get assistance with finding a room. They had a help yourself method with a big board listing available accomodation with a free phone to use to contact them, only thing was there were no prices listed. I was able to get onto the towns free internet and found us a place on booking.com which was just out of the main part of town and a good price at 65 euros including breakfast. Cochem is a touristy little place and all the accomodation in the centre were over 100 euros per night and not offering breakfast, so we were willing to ride 1km back the way we came into town for the saving.
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We had to wait as checkin was not until 3pm and the hotel was all locked up. The owners arrived at about 20 past and we were shown to our room. No view this time, obviously the cheaper rooms are not facing the river, but we didn’t care. We took off our wet rain ponchos and damp clothes and put on the white fluffy robes that were included in our room. This was luxury.

Ironically, about 30 minutes after we checked in, looking out the window we could see blue sky and the rain had stopped and the weather looked like it was clearing. Bad luck, we are in this lovely warm room now and we are here for the night.

I was happy to note that later on when we walked back into town for dinner at about 6.30pm there was a light showering of rain so it would have been shit if we were in the tent tonight. Bad news is this weather is forecast for next 3 days!

Anyway, we had a bit of a walk around town, had a pre-dinner ice cream cone, then found a place to have schnitzel for dinner. Had a 3-course meal for 14.99 euros each (bargain) and shared a ½ litre carafe of rose for 10 euros. I can tell you we needed the short walk back to the hotel; we have not eaten so much since our big breakfast the other morning in Bernkastel-Kues.
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So, hoping tomorrow is a better day than today. We won’t be leaving here early as we have breakfast included with the hotel room and our next destination is only about 20km. We need sunshine as we need to wash clothes and get them dry. Lol
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DISTANCE RODE TODAY 29.78km
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WEINHOTEL COCHEM 63.05euros – twin room, private bathroom across the hall, good buffet breakfast incl

FRIDAY 12TH JULY 2019 (DAY 21)

BIKE DAY 11 (COCHEM TO MOSELKERN)

It was nice to sleep inside, but the beds were like blocks of cement compared to our airbeds. But it was warm, and we had a nice breakfast. The manager advised us that the bike path on the other side of town was closed due to road works and that we would need to go over the bridge and catch a ferry back to the other side. Which is exactly what we did.
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It was easy riding again, track along the Mosel is very good and flat, its only the wind that we need to contend with.

We didn’t have far to go today. Our overnight stop in Moselkern is the best location for us to walk to Burg Eltz (castle), and we rode into the camping ground before midday. It looked a bit like the people from Hicksville were running the place, but they turned out to be the nicest we have come across on our trip.

As we were shown to our patch of grass, a German lady sitting in the annex of her caravan yelled out to us in German, ‘best get that tent up very fast, its about to piss down rain!’ And unfortunately, true to her word, nature opened up the skies as soon as we had the tent up. It was not very heavy rain and I was confident that our belongings stashed inside would stay dry. There was not much we could do except sit around under the cover of the café and wait for the rain to stop. Which it did, but it wasn’t finished yet.

Because we were here so early, it would be possible for us to do the walk to the castle today instead of walking there tomorrow forcing us to stay another night. The rain had eased a little, so we set off on the walk through the forest, it was only 4.4km to the castle. About 10 minutes into our walk the heavens opened, and it poured down. We already had on our trusty Ikea rain ponchos and tried to shelter under trees, but this was the heaviest rain we had encountered the whole trip. My first thought was of the tent and hoping it was keeping everything dry inside.

I said to Lyn, you wanna keep going in the rain or turn back and sit in the rain near the tent? We were about as wet as we were going to get, which was not very wet the Ikea ponchos do a pretty good job, so we decided to carry on to the castle. Turns out this was a very good idea. 15 minutes later the rain stopped, and the sun came out. By the time we arrived at the castle it was quite sunny, and we were having regrets about not bringing our sunglasses.
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We walked around the 12th century castle, sat in the sunshine and ate our sandwich picnic lunch, even sat in the sun and had a coffee and shared a piece of cake. We started the walk back, marvelling at the change of weather and glad we had continued on.
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We reached the village of Moselkern and as it was still dry, I suggested we just go for a walk through, it was not very big.
large_DSCN8931.JPGAbout 2 minutes from the campsite the heavens opened again, and we quickly put our ponchos back on. Reaching the camp, I could see there was a dip in the top of the tent, this meant that water was pooling, and this is when water starts to leak. It was really coming down now, but I had no choice but to go and rescue the tent. It was just a matter of pulling the guide ropes a little tighter to make the fly tauter so the water flowed off and did not pool. It’s a good tent and will not leak if set up properly.

We sat and waited out the downpour, then when Lyn went to check the damage, only her sleeping bag was slightly wet. The lovely (although a bit odd) lady manager offered to put it in the dryer and dry the sleeping bag. Then some other caravan dwellers helped us to relocate the tent to a dryer patch of grass. Out came a tarp to put under the tent, a woman handed us a roll of kitchen paper towel to mop up any dampness inside the tent. And all this was done with limited common language. These people were wonderful.

When this was all sorted, we asked for a glass of wine and were served a lovely wine that came from the managers vineyard. It was very drinkable and at just 1.50 euros per glass lucky we didn’t drink ourselves to sleep.

The rain managed to stay away long enough for us to cook some dinner and have showers and crawl into the tent, which was dry inside. Moments after laying down we could hear the patter of rain on the nylon of the tent, but it did not get heavy enough for us to worry about during the night.

DISTANCE RODE TODAY 18.78km
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MOSELKERN CAMPING 12euros – toilets with paper, 1 euro hot showers, no power

SATURDAY 13TH JULY 2019 (DAY 22)

BIKE DAY 12 (MOSELKERN TO BRAUBACH)

Amazingly enough, it was dry in the morning and we had camp breakfast. We packed everything up and the tent was surprisingly dry. Not quite sure where we are heading today, lol. I was wanting to find an apartment somewhere that we can stop for a few days our of the crap weather. Couldn’t seem to find anywhere so we were riding a little blind, not knowing where we were going to stop.

The weather held out at least and it did not rain. The only thing we did know about finding accommodation is that we desperately needed a washing machine. Because of the crap weather we have been having we have not been able to do our daily washing. We are now on day 4 with only 2 changes of clothes, you do the math.
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The bike path for the end of the Mosel was good as usual. It’s a lovely part of Germany and I am sorry we had the weather that did not do it justice. At least it has been easy pedalling.

We rode into Koblenz and decided to go to the tourist office to see if they could maybe help with finding accommodation. They were about as helpful as tits on a bull, gave me an accommodation book that was completely in German. Thanks. And they did not even have wifi for us to look on the internet. Advised we go over to the shopping centre as there is wifi there. So, we did and still I did not have any luck. Being a rather large town the accommodation here was out of our price range so we decided to ride out and try and sort something out later.

So, we turn right and are now riding alongside the Rhine River. This is our third and final river of this bike trip. We have been alongside the Saar River, then the Mosel River and now the Rhine River.

We ride for a bit longer and decide we will have to camp tonight. Stop at supermarket for dinner supplies we head to Braubach camping and hope they have a washing machine. It is still early enough in the day that we will be able to do a must needed wash of clothes and hang them out to dry.
We are given the only patch of dirt in the whole grassy campground and advised the washing machine costs 3.50 euro per load. Good enough, I put up the tent in the dirt as Lyn organizes the washing, this is after we both strip off the dirties, we are wearing.

Before long all our wardrobes are hanging on the fence of the camp, drying!

We cook dinner as the campground fills up and takes away our view of the castle on the hill.

Been a funny day today, but we are dry and will have clean clothes to wear tomorrow so all good.

DISTANCE RODE TODAY 49.95KM
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UFERWEISE CAMP BRAUBACH 10 EURO – toilets with paper, 1 euro hot showers, no power, 3.50 euro for washing machine

Posted by Cindy Bruin 13:57 Archived in Germany

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Our Grandaughter is in Fulda for 6 mths - I send some of your wonderful photos on to her - thank you for sharing.

by JUDITH ILES

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