Updated: Aug 18
on Sunday July 2st 2023 I left Innsbruck and headed over the Brennerpass, which was by far, the most exhausting uphill I've done so far. I remember how exhausting the two ascends to the Nordkap on the last 40km were last year, but this was one level above. Though all cyclists passing by, either on road-bikes or e-bikes were cheering me up, which in this situation helped.
The descend over the boarder of Italy was very beautiful and I was astonished by how well maintained the cycling path was. As it turned out, I was and, sort of, still am cycling the EV7, also known as "Sun Route", which starts in Alta, Norway (240km before the Nordkap) and ends in Malta, beeing probably one of the reasons why this cycling path was so well maintained.
The landscape was as always beautiful: the green Alps with snowy mountain tops, to the kilometer long grape fields in northern Italy. Getting closer to Verona, I witnessed the Alps actually getting less taller until they were no more and I entered the long and boring fields which I cycled through for 4 days to San Marino, before entering the Appinnenes near Bologna, heading to Florence.
Now I have to admit that I was afraid of the Alps, yet to my surprise I have to admit that the Appinnenes are way more exhausting then the Alps. Leaving the Appinnenes I also had bad luck, as my breaks did not break fully, so going downhill, my bike started getting faster and faster, which then led to my bike jumping around due to the numerous holes in the road. Afraid of an accident I climbed of my bike and started going downhill for almost 3 hours on foot with my bike in hands. Arriving in Florence the same evening I immediately headed for a bike-shop. Visitting the city for 2 days, I also got my bike back the last day and at first everything seemed alright, yet I was proven wrong the day after when I left Florence.
My breaks were doing their job to well, so my tire was not rolling properly and pushing the bike was getting harder and harder, it was more torture then fun. I only cycled with 12km/h and after 25km I went to another bike-store, unfortunately it only helped a bit, I managed to get to 15km/h but my tire was still no running smoothly. Beeing desperate and already tired, as I left 6 hours ago and only did 42km, I decided to take the train for 60km to Pisa, to arrive at time as I booked a bed in a youth hostel and I had to be on schedule to arrive on time in Rome to get my flight.
- We had local elections, and I had to go back to Luxembourg for lay down my oath on the inauguration, so I had to catch my flight back home. In the end this was quiet a journey as I spend 1,5 days in Luxemboug before flying back to Rome. -
Clearing this up, we shall continue with the journey from Pisa to Rome. I cycled with a sort of damaged bike for one day and on the second day in the morning, I went to a third bike-store, where eventually the mechanics could fix my bike and I was back on track to continue the journey flawlessly. After 1.820km and 19 days of cycling + 3 days of rest I then finally arrived in Rome.